Union College invites applications and nominations for the position of Head of Special Collections and Archives. Founded in 1795 and located in Schenectady, NY, Union is a highly-selective liberal arts college with accredited programs in engineering. The collections and archives reflect the long and distinctive history of the college, its faculty and alumni. Union College is the first college chartered by the New York State Board of Regents and is one of the oldest colleges in the United States. The collections include rare books to support the curriculum including artists’ books, significant works of American and British literature and important works on the history of science and early technology. The collection also includes the complete set of Audubon’s Birds of America that was purchased from John James Audubon. The manuscript collection includes the papers of alumni such as John Bigelow and William James Stillman as well as records that document the history and life of the College and region, including the papers of General Electric scientists such as E.F.W. Alexanderson. The successful candidate will formulate and advance a vision for the College’s and Schaffer Library’s rare books, manuscripts and archive collections that supports the College’s educational mission: to provide students with the analytic and reflective abilities needed to become engaged, innovative, and ethical contributors to an increasingly diverse, global, and technologically complex society.
The Head of Special Collections and Archives is a key member of the Schaffer Library’s leadership team, reporting to the College Librarian. The leadership team meets regularly to discuss and act on policy, budgetary, and other administrative matters affecting the role of cultural resources in support of the College’s strategic plan. The Head serves on campus liaison committees related to the library, alumni relations, and the curriculum. In addition, the Head will advise and assist the College Librarian as needed.
The Head of Special Collections and Archives has primary responsibility for:
• Developing and sustaining a vision for Special Collections and Archives that supports the Library’s overall mission and vision as well as the College’s mission and vision.
• Contributing to Library strategic planning, service development, and assessment.
• Planning and executing a program to integrate special collections and archives into the curriculum.
• Developing programs and services to acquire, process, digitize, curate and provide access to special collections and archives.
• Making rare books, manuscripts and archive collections accessible to the campus community and broader scholarly community.
• Providing hands-on learning experiences for students in the use of primary sources.
• Partnering with campus stakeholders to develop innovative ways to use the collections to enhance alumni relations and communication.
• Collaborating with library staff on exhibitions, publications, website development, and other projects.
• Managing the department operating budget
• Supervising 1 FTE and student assistants
• Master's degree accredited by the American Library Association with coursework in archives
• 3-5 years of progressively responsible experience in planning, managing and processing archival collections
• Demonstrated commitment to integrating special collections and archives into the curriculum and making the collections accessible to a broad public by way of new and innovative strategies
• Experience working effectively with collectors and donors.
• Excellent written communication skills and public speaking skills
• Experience effectively leading a department and managing budgets, projects, and staff.
• Successful grant writing and experience developing assessment programs
• Demonstrated ability to work in a collegial and collaborative environment.
Review of applications will begin November 25, 2013 and will continue until the position is filled.
Union College - 16 months ago