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Head of School, Sport and Recreation

Auckland University of Technology – Faculty of Health and Environmental Sciences

  • Lead AUT's world-ranked School of Sport and Recreation
  • Utilise your authentic partnership-driven academic leadership and innovation skills
  • 5-year fixed-term appointment, based at AUT's North Campus in Auckland

As one of the world's top 50 young universities and New Zealand's newest, Auckland University of Technology (AUT) is a university of opportunity where all students with talent and potential have the chance to succeed. We are a socially-driven university with equity and excellence central to our purpose and actions, and we offer a stimulating teaching and research environment with strong connections to government, business, and industry. AUT has more than 27,000 students and over 4,000 staff based primarily at our three Auckland teaching campuses.

AUT's exceptional School of Sport and Recreation/Te Kura Hākinakina is a leader in its field with a long heritage of developing innovate and creative programmes and supporting sporting endeavour through scientific investigation. The school is ranked 41st in the world (QS World University Rankings 2023) and is the top-ranked human movement and sport sciences school in New Zealand. Part of AUT's largest faculty (Health and Environmental Sciences/Te Ara Hauora Pūtaiao), collaboration and partnership underpin everything we do and students connect extensively with industry and community groups through our extraordinary range of partner organisations. Our academics produce world-leading research and our teaching is industry-informed, we have a strong focus on Māori and Pacific people and well-established kaupapa and values, and are supported by outstanding facilities. We teach across all AUT's campuses and operate AUT Millennium - our world class sports training and research facility.

Please ensure to review the candidate information handbook available for this appointment (this includes detail on the Faculty, School, AUT, the position description and more).

Become the new Head of our School of Sport and Recreation!

We are seeking a Head of School to provide outstanding academic, administrative and people leadership to the School of Sport and Recreation. You will work closely with our incoming Faculty Dean and play a critical part in achieving the strategic objectives of AUT, the Faculty and the School. You will be comfortable communicating with different groups from diverse disciplines and will lead a team of approximately 75 (FTE) deeply committed and resilient School staff. The School is currently in a strong position. You will continue the progress made, whilst embracing space for your creativity of thinking and academic innovation to enable the School to move to the next level as we tackle societal challenges with a trans-disciplinary lens.

Key focus areas include:

  • Lead further development of a School culture focused on excellence, innovation and equity in teaching, research, service, industry and community outreach, and other academic contributions.
  • Advocate for the School and realise it's potential for an increased external profile and brand, both domestic and international.
  • Increase School alignment and participation with University and Faculty strategic objectives, while driving greater interdisciplinary thinking and collaborations.
  • Ensure higher levels of student retention whilst increasing the School's international and domestic student enrolments.  

You will be recognised as a culturally capable leader who values diversity, works inclusively, and allows and champions creativity, flexibility and innovation whilst being humble and principled. You will be able to lead the School on the next steps of its Te Tiriti o Waitangi journey and you will display attributes of inclusiveness, empathy, trustworthiness, confidence and kindness. Your ability to listen, connect, collaborate, communicate and influence will be critical - as will be your strong respect for others coupled with an open and engaging attitude that is flexible to changing requirements. A resolute, robust and positive attitude is essential.

Applications and Selection Criteria

We welcome applications from senior academics of high standing with significant senior academic leadership and staff management experience. Along with your full CV, please ensure to submit a) a cover letter which explains why this particular role (and AUT) is of interest, and b) a statement addressing how your experience aligns with the key selection criteria we're seeking below:

  1. A distinguished record of academic achievement suitable for appointment preferably as a Professor or Associate Professor; or an outstanding track record of research, innovation and contribution outside the university sector.
  2. Demonstrated successful experience at appropriate leadership and people management levels within an academic environment and/or organisations of relevance to sport science and academia. Please highlight relevant interdisciplinary contributions.
  3. A brief summary of successes leading administrative innovations and impact, curriculum development and/or research growth.
  4. Demonstrated success increasing student enrolments (or customers/client base if outside academia)
  5. Capability to lead the School on an authentic and robust Te Tiriti o Waitangi journey and to advance Māori and Pacific students, staff, and community outcomes. A champion for equity.
  6. Significant experience leading key strategic change with evidence of strategic leadership outcomes demonstrating an excellent understanding of cultural, operational, and organisational change management.
  7. Outstanding resilience, interpersonal, negotiation and diplomacy skills, combined with a coaching and consultative approach to leadership.
  8. Applicants are welcome to add further comments they may feel of relevance.

Further Information:

  • Start Date: As soon as possible (to be agreed with the appointee).
  • Term: The successful candidate will secure a 5-year term as Head of School.
  • Salary: Commensurate with relevant experience and skills and aligned with the appropriate step in AUT's academic pay scales (Associate Professors: $137,341 - $159,008; Professors: $150,340 - $193,678). An additional special responsibilities allowance is also paid.
  • Referees: Applicants should also provide names, contact details and clarification of relationship for at least three potential referees. Referees will not be contacted without the prior consent of the applicant.
  • Enquiries: Please contact Mike Wood, AUT Executive Recruitment Partner - mike.wood@aut.ac.nz

Advertising closes: Sunday, 21 January 2024 at 11.55pm. We expect interviews to take place mid/late February 2024.

Please note: AUT will be closed for summer operations from 15 December - 7 January and enquiries will not be replied to over this period.

Reference: 87410

At AUT we strive to be a place where people love to work and learn. We are committed to te Tiriti, excellence and inclusivity and aspire to be the University of choice for Māori and Pacific communities. We welcome people of all ethnicities, genders, sexual orientations, religious and political beliefs, socio-economic situations and accessibility needs.

Please note that all applications must be submitted through the online application process. For further information, please send us an enquiry here or call 921 9499. Please note we are happy to answer your questions but we do not accept applications by email. You will need to apply through the standard registration process.

Location: Auckland - New Zealand
Salary: NZ$137,341 to NZ$193,678
£67,241.60 to £94,823.97 converted salary*
Hours: Full Time
Contract Type: Fixed-Term/Contract
Placed On: 24th November 2023
Closes: 21st January 2024
Job Ref: 87410
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