Assistant Professor – Jazz/Theory

Virginia Commonwealth University School of the Arts (VCUarts) Department of Music


This full-time, 9-month position is at the rank of Assistant Professor, is non-tenure eligible (term), and begins August 16, 2023.


Application Deadline: Review of applications begins Friday, January 6, 2023 and continues until the position is filled. For best consideration, applications are due by Friday, January 6, 2023.


The Opportunity:


The VCUarts Department of Music ( seeks an Assistant Professor of jazz and music theory with a collaborative and community-driven approach to performing and teaching, and a passion for and knowledge of training the next generation of musicians.


This is a non-tenure eligible (term) faculty position. Term faculty are eligible for promotion in academic rank, and are valued for their academic, professional, and creative practice/scholarly contributions in their specific area of expertise. The primary responsibilities of this opportunity are teaching so we seek to hire faculty who stand out with respect to effectiveness in teaching and engagement with students.


VCUarts Department of Music:


The mission of the VCUarts Department of Music is to educate musicians to shape the stage, the classroom and the world. With 22 full-time faculty and more than 45 part-time instructors, the Department has deep ties to the community, including multiple partnerships with educational and professional arts organizations throughout the region. Approximately 230 students choose to major in music, with many other students from throughout the university taking courses and participating in ensembles.


Major Responsibilities:


This position is a 9-month term faculty position in the Department of Music with an academic rank of Assistant Professor. Responsibilities may include leading a jazz ensemble, teaching jazz arranging, teaching jazz instrumental or vocal applied lessons, teaching in one or more theory/aural skills courses, and teaching Jazz Improvisation. Course assignments could change based on student needs and will be determined in consultation with the Chair. Additional duties include providing administrative and artistic support for the jazz program, serving on committees, developing and executing recruitment initiatives, and initiating community engagement opportunities in line with the department’s values. Candidates with evidence of collaborative and interdisciplinary research and experience in and commitment to working in a diverse and inclusive environment are strongly encouraged to apply.


The faculty member is expected to: provide leadership by mentoring students; foster collaborative curriculum and research through diverse and innovative repertoire, projects, and concert experiences; promote the efforts of the department of music through public performances in the university and throughout the community; demonstrate through research, teaching, and/or public engagement the richness of diversity in the learning experience; and generate national and international academic, community and industry partnerships. In support of the department’s strong commitment to diversity, the faculty member is expected to contribute to initiatives that contribute to a meaningful arts education accessible to underrepresented or disadvantaged groups and foster a welcoming, equitable, and inclusive learning environment for all students.


Creative research is not a primary expectation for this non-tenure eligible position. It is expected that the faculty member will demonstrate excellence through teaching and will maintain a scholarly body of knowledge within the discipline. The department will support the faculty member’s professional development, as appropriate and within available resources, to ensure ongoing mastery of the discipline as it relates to performing arts and the program’s curriculum. Professional development activities will be consistent with a

support the mission and initiatives of the department, school and university. The department will also support creative research at an appropriate annual level, though teaching will constitute the majority of the faculty member’s responsibilities.


As a member of a community-oriented, tight-knit department and School, the faculty member will provide service such as directing and assisting with student, department, and school-wide initiatives; providing artistic and administrative support for the jazz program; working in concert with department activities; developing and executing recruitment initiatives; fostering community engagement opportunities; and serving on department/School/University committees. Other responsibilities may be assigned by the Chair or university administration.





  • Master’s degree in music at the time of hire
  • 3-5 Years of Successful Teaching Experience
  • Demonstrated excellence as a jazz performer and improviser
  • Demonstrated excellence in teaching musicianship courses
  • Demonstrated experience working in and fostering a diverse faculty, staff, and student environment or commitment to do so as a faculty member at VCU



  • Evidence of collaborative and interdisciplinary teaching
  • Successful student recruitment initiatives
  • Experience in the commercial music industry Application Instructions:

Virginia Commonwealth University is committed to organizational diversity, equity and inclusion – an environment where all can thrive in their pursuit of excellence. VCUarts strongly encourages applications from all racial, ethnic, gender, and social identities.


Applicants are requested to submit a Statement of Contributions to Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion (typically between 150-300 words) providing your career aspirations and contributions toward promoting diversity, equity, and inclusion. Through this statement, you can share how your lived experiences, and academic and professional activities will impact your contribution to VCU’s mission of promoting equity and inclusion.

Note: Examples include working with others to further the goals of equity and inclusion; leading in any capacity that tangibly promotes an environment where diversity is welcomed, fostered, and celebrated; creative activity, research and scholarship that promotes equity and parity; teaching and mentoring students, and/or engaging with faculty and/or staff from traditionally underrepresented groups to create a positive and successful organizational experience. For additional guidance on writing a Statement of Contributions to Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion:


In addition, the following documents should submitted online via the VCU Jobs Website to the attention of Justin Alexander, search committee Chair:

  • A Letter of Interest that conveys relevant academic and professional experience and describes experiences and/or professional service that inform a collaborative and community-engaged approach to jazz and music theory
  • Teaching Philosophy
  • Current CV
  • A list of three current references including names, addresses, phone numbers, and email addresses

(references will not be contacted prior to applicant’s approval)

  • Please do not send audio or video recordings currently



Only electronic applications submitted via the VCU Jobs Website will be accepted. For best consideration, completed applications are due by Friday, January 6, 2023. Questions about the VCU Jobs Website application process should be directed to Tasia Robinson, Assistant Director of Human Resources for VCUarts, at




Ranked by US News & World Report as a top-five arts and design school, VCUarts ( includes over 3,000 undergraduate and graduate students with nationally recognized programs in design, visual and performing arts, and has an annual budget of $38 million and an endowment of more than $13.5 million.

Students are taught by over 175 full-time teaching and research faculty members and the school is supported by over 60 staff members that assist in daily processes. The School includes two campuses; one in Richmond and one in Doha, Qatar. The Richmond campus is located on the university’s 75-acre Monroe Park campus situated in the city’s historic Fan District. Ultimately, the work of the School of the Arts extends globally with partnerships throughout the world and across fields as diverse as the humanities, health care and business.


Virginia Commonwealth University is committed to providing accessible and equitable living, learning and working environments free from discrimination and harassment based on race, color, religion, national or ethnic origin, age, sex (including pregnancy), political affiliation, veteran status, genetic information, sexual orientation, gender identity, gender expression or disability.