Brooks College Faculty Search


The Brooks College of Interdisciplinary Studies (BCOIS) is currently conducting a tenure-line cluster hire that is designed to fill at least three tenure-line faculty positions in the School of Interdisciplinary Studies. These appointments may be joined with the Frederik Meijer Honors College, which is also housed in BCOIS. This search is a part of our ongoing commitment to values of inclusion and equity. It is designed to increase curricular coverage of areas related to diversity and inclusion, promote inclusive teaching strategies, and support faculty retention.

Successful candidates will have teaching and scholarly expertise that spans needs/priorities in multiple programs and/or units, increase curricular coverage of areas related to diversity and inclusion, and contribute to college and university goals with respect to access, equity, and an inclusive campus climate. We are particularly interested in candidates whose work joins Latino/a &/or Latin American Studies with areas of greatest teaching need within the college. This could include but is not limited to: Digital Studies, Environmental & Sustainability Studies, Integrative Studies, Religious Studies, and Women, Gender, & Sexuality Studies, among others. 

Search Structure

Search Committee:    

Committee Convenor/Chair: Melanie Shell-Weiss (non-voting), Associate Dean and Professor, Brooks College of Interdisciplinary Studies

Inclusion Advocate: Susan Mendoza, Director, Center for Undergraduate Scholar Engagement


  • Coeli Fitzpatrick, Chair and Professor, Frederik Meijer Honors College
  • Jakia Marie, Program Coordinator of African & African American Studies and Assistant Professor, School of Interdisciplinary Studies
  • Leifa Mayers, Associate Professor, School of Interdisciplinary Studies and Frederik Meijer Honors College
  • Santos Ramos, Program Director of Leadership & Professional Innovation and Assistant Professor, School of Interdisciplinary Studies


Search Chair Assistant: Lynnette Keen, Office Assistant, Brooks College Deans Office

All members of the School of Interdisciplinary Studies and the Frederik Meijer Honors College will be invited to meet with candidates as part of campus interview events. Feedback from those sessions will be incorporated into the search committee's recommendation process.

Preparation & External Communications

This search builds on the Brooks College Cluster Hire search from AY2021-2022 which resulted in six (6) tenure-line faculty hires. As part of this ongoing effort to strengthen interdisciplinary innovation and support faculty retention, the Dean's Office will maintain a digital presence on the Brooks College website that includes:

  • College diversity and inclusion statement.
  • Link to the university’s strategic plan + college mission and values.
  • Statement of purpose, including links to national literature on purpose and benefits of cluster hire w/ specific connections to benefits for Brooks College and GVSU
  • Statement of expectations (for hire structure, candidates, and online retention/mentoring/support)
  • Mentoring plan, including support for underrepresented faculty
  • Networking opportunities and university resources (including FTLC, CSCE, and others)
  • Plan to assess cluster outcomes (to be conducted and shared internally)


Planning for the AY2023-2024 cluster hire was announced at the college-wide BCOIS Kick-Off Meeting in August 2023 and announced in the first Academic Leadership Council meeting that same month. Prior to review of applications, the search chair met individually with the SIS Department Chair, program directors for Digital Studies, Environmental & Sustainability Studies, Integrative Studies, and the program coordinators for Latino/a & Latin American Studies and Religious Studies to get a more specific understanding of program/unit needs. Review of applications began on Friday, November 17, 2023 with the posting closed to applications on Wednesday, December 6, 2023.



The faculty positions were advertised via a single posting with applicants applying via a single portal on the HR website. We expect that primary appointments for all candidates will be in the School of Interdisciplinary Studies. 

All applicants were required to submit the following materials:

  • Cover letter
  • Vita
  • Statement of teaching philosophy
  • Writing sample indicative of area of scholarship
  • Finalists will be asked to submit official copies of their graduate transcripts and letters of recommendation. Those will be sent directly to the Brooks College Dean's Office


These positions advertised broadly, drawing upon GVSU’s Inclusive Hiring and Recruitment Toolkit as well as across publications and venues identified by the partnering units/programs and attracted an exceptionally large number of applicants.

The final job posting included the university’s Proactive Inclusion & Equity Statements as well a contextual statement describing the overarching goals of the Brooks College Cluster hires.

Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion

The faculty and staff of the Brooks College are deeply committed to not only advancing equity, inclusion and diversity, but in leading Grand Valley State University in these values. We begin by recognizing that we as a university and as a college are not comfortable with our current DEI situation, and that there continues to be important—even urgent—work to be done across several areas. We collectively and individually will make efforts at:

Supporting and recruiting a diverse range of students

Already, the BCOIS has the largest percentage of students of color of the seven colleges of GVSU. BCOIS also has a far higher percentage of adult/non-traditional students than the other six colleges. To us, that means we have an additional responsibility to ensure that students of color, adult learners, and other students carrying marginalized identities, are supported to remain students in our courses and programs. For some students, that means measures that acknowledge the challenges they face, be they childcare needs, housing or food insecurity, systemic racism, or flexibility in applying previously earned credits to their GVSU transcripts.

Supporting and recruiting a diverse range of faculty/staff

Many BCOIS faculty and staff carry multiple identities that may indicate marginalization. Our mentoring programs and processes must acknowledge and support colleagues across their whole selves, as personal and professional success and wellbeing are intertwined. Our faculty hiring process and search plan is one effort that we are investing in for future success in welcoming, and supporting, a cohort of new colleagues who will share in our DEI efforts. Their success is an intrinsic value for us, collectively and individually. If they are not successful, none of us are.

A vibrant, inclusive, and accessible curriculum

Our courses and programs are being continually improved to ensure that current DEI understandings are reflected in syllabi, program requirements, and electives. We will continue to deliver our courses in modalities, and at times, that work best for our diverse range of students. We will continue to find ways to reduce the cost of participation—particularly in required texts; our work in developing online educational resources (OERs) and low-cost course readers is one way we can support equity in student success. Finding avenues for affordable (and ideally fairly compensated) internships, practica, and other high-impact educational opportunities continues to be an important goal.

Ongoing DEI-related professional development

Beginning in 2021, BCOIS offered (in partnership with the Pew Faculty Teaching & Learning Center) dedicated cohorts of EdX sessions as part of the Inclusive Excellence series. That series, as well as a range of other resources, prepares faculty in designing and maintaining equitable and inclusive learning spaces, both online and in person, as well as assignments and assessments that support success by all students. We will continue to provide learning opportunities for faculty, staff, and students that advance individual and collective DEI understandings and actions.

Faculty & Staff Affinity Groups

The Division of Inclusion and Equity, with support from the Human Resources Office, is proud to empower our employee affinity groups. These groups host meaningful events, engage in mentoring, and foster community among our underrepresented and diverse faculty, staff, and student populations.

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November 17, 2023

Brooks College Town Hall

November 17, 2023

Review of applications begins

December 6, 2023

Job posting closed to applications

August 6, 2024

Start date for tenure-line faculty hired through this AY2023-2024 Brooks Cluster Hire

Page last modified December 17, 2023