Assistant Director and Head, Research and Education

The Virginia Commonwealth University Libraries invites applications and nominations for the position of Assistant Director and Head, Research and Education for the VCU Health Sciences Library. The Assistant Director and Head, Research and Education will provide innovative, collaborative leadership and overall management and administration of the Research and Education department, including the VCU Medical Center Health and Wellness Library, and lead efforts to develop and deliver programming and outreach for the Health Sciences Library. The department consists of six faculty liaison librarians, the Health and Wellness Librarian, two staff members, and several student and hourly employees supporting both locations. In the absence of the Associate Dean and Director, the Assistant Director and Head is responsible for the Health Sciences Library. The successful candidate will join an exceptionally talented, culturally and academically diverse community.

Located in culturally diverse, historic, and dynamic Richmond, Virginia, convenient to the beauty of the Blue Ridge Mountains and the recreation destinations of the Atlantic Ocean and the Chesapeake Bay, Virginia Commonwealth University is one of Virginia's largest universities and among the nation's leading research institutions. VCU Libraries, one of Virginia’s outstanding research library systems, advances the University’s teaching, research, service, and patient care mission with comprehensive digital and print collections and nationally recognized innovation in its facilities, advanced media and technology resources for its community. In February 2018, the Association of College and Research Libraries recognized VCU Libraries with the ACRL Excellence in Academic Libraries Award. In 2020, the Health Sciences Library received the Medical Library Association’s Research Advancement in Health Sciences Librarianship Award.

Diversity and Inclusion

VCU’s commitment to diversity is one of the institution’s unique strengths. Our student body is one of the most diverse in Virginia in terms of race and ethnicity and socioeconomic status, and one of the four themes of our Quest 2028 Strategic Plan is “Diversity driving excellence.” The United States Department of Education has designated VCU as a minority serving institution effective July 1, 2022. VCU is committed to building an increasingly diverse faculty and leadership team, and is actively engaged in partnerships with diverse communities in the Richmond metro area. VCU Libraries is purposeful in our efforts to advance diversity and inclusion and expects that the Assistant Director and Head, Research and Education will be a leader in fostering a welcoming atmosphere for all members of the VCU community. The successful candidate will receive support for research, service, and professional development and will have ample opportunity to pursue diversity and inclusion related opportunities in those areas.


Reporting to the Associate Dean, VCU Libraries and Director, VCU Health Sciences Library, the Assistant Director and Head, Research and Education will lead the Research and Education department in developing, promoting, and delivering knowledge-based support to programs on the Medical College of Virginia (MCV) Campus, the primary health sciences campus for VCU, through a faculty liaison librarian model, enabling University members and external partners to locate, access, and organize information using the most appropriate tools. Additionally, the Assistant Director and Head oversees programming for the Health Sciences Library, operations of the VCU Medical Center Health and Wellness Library, and leads the Health Sciences Library in the absence of the Associate Dean and Director. Internally, the Assistant Director and Head is expected to develop and sustain relationships that advance the VCU Libraries’ mission; externally, the Assistant Director and Head is expected to lead outreach programming efforts to local communities.

This position is an essential member of the Health Sciences divisional leadership team and is expected to play an integral role in the success of division-wide operations and collaborative initiatives. As a member of VCU Libraries Management Council, the Assistant Director and Head will work with colleagues to advance the strategic initiatives of the Libraries.

The Assistant Director and Head, Research and Education is expected to be active professionally and to contribute to developments in the field. Faculty with the VCU Libraries are evaluated and promoted on the basis of job performance, scholarship, and service. Health Sciences Library faculty librarians are encouraged to pursue and maintain membership in the Academy of Health Information Professionals (AHIP).



  • ALA-accredited graduate degree or accredited graduate degree in another appropriate discipline.
  • Experience as a liaison/subject specialist or comparable experience in a comprehensive academic health sciences or research library with demonstrated knowledge of accessing and effectively using health sciences resources (i.e., PubMed, Web of Science), including the use of these resources in systematic reviews and other types of evidence synthesis.
  • Progressively responsible experience, including supervising, coaching, and mentoring health sciences librarians or staff in an academic health sciences or research library.
  • Demonstrated experience working in and fostering a diverse faculty, staff, and student environment or commitment to do so as a faculty member at VCU.
  • Candidates need not meet preferred qualifications to be fully considered. We value many individual and unique skills that would strengthen the VCU Libraries and our teams.


  • Knowledge about emerging trends, issues, standards, and best practices in academic health sciences librarianship.
  • Experience teaching graduate and professional students, as well as knowledge of adult learning theory and health sciences professional education.
  • Experience writing and administering grants.
  • Ability to adeptly use technology in administrative and learning environments
  • Ability to work independently while being effective in a highly collaborative environment.
  • Demonstrated service orientation and the ability to build and sustain relationships.
  • Demonstrated ability to communicate effectively, both verbally and in writing.
  • Ability to meet deadlines and manage competing priorities under pressure.
  • Flexibility and adaptability for work in an evolving, fast-paced environment.

Salary: Salary commensurate with experience, not less than $90,000 annually. This is a full-time, non-tenured faculty position. 12-month faculty benefits apply, including 24 vacation days annually and choice of retirement and annuity plans. Relocation assistance is available. Librarians are provided a generous professional development allowance. For more information about benefits, see the Faculty Benefits page.

Interviews: Initial interviews will be conducted virtually. We anticipate inviting finalists to campus.

Learn about the position in an online information session

We are hosting virtual information sessions for interested applicants in advance of the January 10, 2024 review date. Please consider joining one of these sessions to learn more about the position, meet the supervisor, Teresa L. Knott, and get answers to your questions about the position.

Join one of our info sessions via Zoom:

  • January 4, 2024 - 1:30-2:30 pm Eastern
  • January 12, 2024 - 3:00-4:00 pm Eastern

The attendee list for each Zoom session will be hidden, and those asking questions may do so anonymously. Live captioning will be provided. To attend a session, please complete the confidential form to receive a Zoom link.

Questions? Please contact Teresa L. Knott at

Virginia Commonwealth University and the VCU Libraries

As one of only 64 public universities with academic medical centers to be designated by the Carnegie Foundation as “Community Engaged” with “Very High Research Activity,” Virginia Commonwealth University ranks among Virginia’s largest research universities, enrolling over 28,000 students. Located in the heart of Richmond, VCU offers 44 doctoral, 64 masters, 3 professional, and 66 baccalaureate degree programs. Thirty-four of VCU's graduate and professional programs are ranked by U.S. News & World Report as among the best in the nation, with 29 programs ranking in the top 50 and sculpture and nurse anesthesia ranked number one. Over 2500 faculty comprise the University's teaching force. Research strengths at the University include health and life sciences, education, engineering, social work, behavioral sciences, public affairs, advertising and design, and the fine arts. Sponsored research funding totals over $460 million, placing VCU among the top 100 research institutions in the United States.

Libraries at Virginia Commonwealth University, including the James Branch Cabell Library on the Monroe Park Campus and the Health Sciences Library on the MCV Campus, employ over 59 professionals and 68 staff with annual expenditures exceeding $22 million. VCU also operates academic programs in Doha, Qatar, supported by a library there, and in various locations throughout the U.S. and the world. The VCU Libraries is a member of the Association of Research Libraries, the Association of Southeastern Research Libraries, Center for Research Libraries, Coalition for Networked Information, National Digital Stewardship Alliance, Scholarly Publishing and Academic Resources Coalition, and the Virtual Library of Virginia (VIVA), a statewide networking consortium for shared access to electronic and print resources, as well as a Resource Library in the Network of the National Library of Medicine, among others. The VCU Libraries uses the following packages for its system architecture: Alma, Primo, Digital Commons, ArchivesSpace, ILLiad, and Omeka.

The MCV Campus, located in historic Court End near state and local government and financial centers, is home to the VCU Schools of Dentistry, Medicine, Nursing, Pharmacy, and Population Health; VCU College of Health Professions; the Wright Center for Clinical and Translational Research; and VCU Health. VCU Health includes VCU Medical Center, a Magnet Recognized hospital with 812 inpatient beds, outpatient clinics, a Level 1 trauma center, and over 800 providers in 200 specialty areas, many of national and international renown, as well as the Children’s Hospital at VCU and Massey Cancer Center, an NCI-designated comprehensive cancer center. In addition to multidisciplinary centers for cancer, cardiology, neurosurgery, and transplantation, VCU Health offers virtually every form of contemporary medical service.

For more information about the VCU Libraries, please visit our home page at Review of applications will begin January 16, 2024, and will continue until the position is filled. To apply, go to, complete the application and submit a cover letter, CV/resume, and the names, email addresses, addresses, and telephone numbers of three professional references. Applicants are requested to submit a Statement of Contributions to Diversity, Equity and Inclusion providing your career aspirations and contributions toward promoting diversity, equity, and inclusion.

Virginia Commonwealth University is an urban research institution with a richly diverse university community and commitment to multicultural opportunities. Virginia Commonwealth University is an equal opportunity affirmative action university providing access to education and employment without regard to age, race, color, national origin, gender, religion, sexual orientation, veteran’s status, political affiliation or disability.

Apply at VCUJobs