The University of Detroit Mercy invites nominations and applications for the position of Dean of the School of Law. As Michigan's largest, most comprehensive private University, the University of Detroit Mercy is an independent Catholic institution of higher education sponsored by the Religious Sisters of Mercy and Society of Jesus. The University seeks qualified candidates who will contribute to the University's mission, diversity, and excellence of its academic community. The University of Detroit Mercy is an Equal Opportunity Affirmative Action Employer with a diverse faculty and student body and welcomes persons of all backgrounds.
The University of Detroit (founded in 1877) and Mercy College of Detroit (founded in 1941) consolidated in 1990 to form the University of Detroit Mercy, Michigan's largest and most comprehensive Catholic university. Sponsored by the Society of Jesus (the Jesuits) and the Religious Sisters of Mercy, the University is spiritually inclusive, committed to quality education, service of faith, promotion of justice and compassionate service to persons in need, in order to establish future generations of students as leaders in the 21st century.
The University offers more than 100 academic degrees and programs of study across seven different colleges and schools (School of Architecture, College of Business Administration, School of Dentistry, College of Engineering & Science, College of Health Professions/McAuley School of Nursing, College of Liberal Arts & Education, and the School of Law). UDM has approximately 340 full-time faculty, with 85% of those individuals holding doctoral or terminal degrees.
The purpose of a UDM education is to prepare graduates who can set and achieve their own goals, find meaning in their lives, and make lasting contributions to their communities. The core curriculum is designed to provide each student — regardless of major — with critical thinking, communication and leadership skills.
With a diverse student body of approximately 5,400 students 25% of whom are minority, the University draws students from across the country as well as internationally. The average age of the students is 27 and 75% are enrolled in full-time study.
UDM has more than 83,500 living alumni, including Michigan State Supreme Court justices, judges, prosecuting attorneys, major executives of Fortune 500 companies, university presidents and educators, medical researchers, prominent architects, dentists and engineers, managers in automotive companies, partners in major accounting firms and graduates in virtually every Detroit area hospital. University graduates reside in all 50 states and nearly 100 foreign countries from Algeria to Zambia.
UDM is located in Detroit, one of the world's great commercial and industrial centers, and a learning and cultural center as well. The many top-flight businesses and institutions headquartered in Detroit have been very generous in offering co-op and internship opportunities to our students. In many cases, the doors to those businesses and institutions were opened by UDM alumni who work there. Detroit also provides a wealth of cultural and entertainment opportunities. There is always a movie, concert, exhibit or game to attend in Detroit.
Relevant websites that provide meaningful information about Detroit are as follows:
University of Detroit Mercy President Antoine M. Garibaldi, Ph.D., assumed his position on June 1, 2011. Previously, Dr. Garibaldi served as president of Gannon University in Erie, Pa., from 2001-2010.
Recognized as a national scholar in higher education, Dr. Garibaldi's career spans more than 35 years as a tenured professor, accomplished researcher and educational administrator. During his tenure as Gannon University's president, the university's enrollment increased by 24% from 3,401 to 4,238 students, the highest in 17 years, and its endowment more than doubled. In 2008, he successfully completed the largest comprehensive fund-raising campaign in Gannon's history, raising more than $31.5 million in private gifts and $8 million in foundation and government grants. Other major accomplishments during his nearly ten-year tenure include: U.S. News & World Report top-tier rankings for seven straight years, Best Value (or Great School, Great Price) rankings for five years, and a Top Up-and-Coming recognition; highly successful five-year Strategic Plans I and II; establishment of the Erie Technology Incubator; and acquisition of and major renovations to more than 33 administrative, academic and student housing buildings.
Founded in 1912 and a member of the American Association of Law Schools since 1934, the University of Detroit Mercy School of Law is a Catholic, urban law school that seeks to provide an excellent and dynamic legal education through a curriculum that integrates theory, doctrine, and practice; requires experiential learning; and emphasizes ethics and service to others.
The School prides itself on its curriculum, which combines traditional legal education with an innovative third year course of study focused on experiential learning and acquisition of global perspectives on law. Distinctive features of the curriculum include a mandatory clinical component as well as required participation in a simulated law firm practice environment (The Law Firm Program). The Juris Doctor program includes day and evening divisions. In addition to offering the standard J.D. and a J.D./MBA, the School of Law offers a Dual J.D. (U.S./Canadian) with the University of Windsor, a J.D./L.E.D. (U.S./Mexican) dual degree with Monterrey Institute of Technology (Mexico), and a Dual J.D./L.E.D. degree allowing graduates to be licensed in Canada, Mexico, and the United States.
The School of Law has long demonstrated a commitment to a diverse student body and, in fact, has admitted both women and people of color since its inception. There are 544 students currently enrolled at the School. The student body is ethnically and culturally diverse, and includes significant concentrations of Arab and Chaldean Americans and African Americans, as well as smaller groups of Asian and Latino students. The School's religious diversity mirrors its ethnic diversity with students representing Roman Catholic, other Christian, Jewish, Muslim, and Hindu traditions. The School is also home to secular students. Finally, the student body is diverse by age. In order to mirror this diversity throughout the School of Law's faculty and administration the School seeks a Dean committed to the recruitment and retention of racial and ethnic minorities.
The School of Law is located in the heart of Detroit's downtown, near state and federal courthouses, major law firms and government agencies, and several of the fifteen Fortune 500 companies headquartered in the Detroit metropolitan area and only two miles from Canada, the United States' largest trading partner.
A short drive from the School of Law campus are sports stadiums, amazing museums, professional theatre, opera and various music venues. The School is within a thirty minute drive from the Palace of Auburn Hills (Detroit Pistons), DTE Energy Music Theatre, the Detroit Zoo, the Henry Ford Museum , and Greenfield Village.
- The School has recently completed multi-million dollar renovations to both of the historical buildings that comprise the law campus. Dowling Hall has been home to the School for many years; the newly renovated early 20th century Detroit firehouse is home to the George J. Asher Law Clinic Center.
- The School’s downtown Detroit location is in close proximity to state and federal courthouses, major law firms and governmental agencies, the headquarters of several large Fortune 500 corporations; and only minutes from the U.S./Canada border and the University of Windsor.
- The School's innovative and experientially focused J.D. curriculum integrates theory, doctrine, and practice through its nationally recognized Legal Writing Program and the Law Firm Program.
- The School’s Clinical Law Program is celebrating nearly 50 years of service to the community and consists of nine clinics that provide representation to children, the elderly, immigrants, indigent criminal defendants, those at risk of losing their homes to foreclosure, and veterans through its renowned Veteran’s Clinic and Project SALUTE.
- The School offers several dual degree programs including:
- - the Dual J.D. program with the University of Windsor
- - the J.D./L.E.D. dual degree with Monterrey Institute of Technology (Mexico); and
- - a Dual J.D./L.E.D. degree that allows students to be licensed in Canada, Mexico and the United States.
- The School’s ethnically and geographically diverse student body includes students from sixteen states, Canada, and four other countries.
- The School offers a dynamic teaching/learning community led by highly committed and vibrant faculty.
- The School's distinguished alumni include many who have served as leaders of the bar; as state and federal judges, including justices of the Michigan Supreme Court; and as chief executive officers of major law firms.
The University of Detroit Mercy School of Law is well-known for offering outstanding and innovative academic and practical experiences for its students. The School seeks a leader who will continue to promote the uniqueness of UDM Law while strengthening the program for all current and future students. The new Dean will assist in enhancing the School’s stature in a manner reflective of UDM’s Jesuit and Mercy mission and values with a specific focus in the following areas:
- Promotion of the Institution and of its Mission: The School takes justifiable pride in the accomplishments of those who came before – students, faculty and staff and those who currently offer their time and talent to the institution. The new Dean will serve as an enthusiastic champion of the School externally and internally. The Dean will actively promote the School’s values, strengths, and achievements to the larger community; will serve as a proud and persistent advocate for the interests of the School within the University of Detroit Mercy; and will work to inculcate in students, faculty, administration, staff, and alumni pride in the School and an appreciation for and commitment to the School’s mission and values.
- Program and Curriculum Development: The School offers a number of innovative and nationally recognized programs, including its Law Firm Program, its Clinical Law Program, its Legal Writing Program, as well as its various joint degree programs. The Dean will assist the faculty in evaluating and improving existing programs and will take the lead, working in collaboration with the faculty, in envisioning, creating, and implementing new programs. The environment today requires that students be prepared for a rapidly changing and increasingly global legal profession. The School’s location and mission are perfectly positioned to offer this kind of preparation to its students.
- Student Recruitment, Retention, and Placement: The Dean will assume principal responsibility for identifying, recruiting, and retaining a diverse group of students who will thrive at the School, are committed to its mission, and show promise for competent and distinguished service to clients, to the legal profession, and to the community at large. S/he also will work with the Career Services Office, alumni, and members of the judiciary and legal profession to enhance graduates’ employment prospects.
- Faculty Recruitment, Development, and Retention: The School has an experienced faculty with many years of service to the School, the legal profession, and legal academia. The Dean will share responsibility with the existing faculty for assessing the short- and long-term needs of the institution and developing and executing an intelligent, realistic plan for the recruitment, development, and retention of talented and dedicated faculty.
- Diversity: The School is located in the heart of Detroit, a city whose population is principally African American. The city and region also are home to sizable and growing Latino and Asian populations and to one of the country’s largest concentrations of Middle Easterners. The Dean will possess a deep and sincere commitment to comprehensive diversity and will model such a commitment to all institutional stakeholders. The Dean will assume primary responsibility for the aggressive recruitment of a diverse and highly qualified faculty, staff, and administration; will take steps to ensure a welcoming and open environment at the School; and will give high priority to the success and retention of minority faculty members.
- Fundraising: The School’s most recent fundraising initiatives have focused on the renovation of its historic buildings.The fundraising initiatives for the incoming Dean will focus on human and institutional capital. The Dean’s ability to achieve the outlined leadership priorities depends on his or her ability to garner the resources necessary to support these priorities. He or she will assume principal responsibility for raising funds to offset the School’s dependence on tuition revenue; to allow the School to attract and retain highly qualified students, faculty, administration, and staff; and to allow the School to continue to offer an innovative, valuable, and mission-driven curriculum.
The University of Detroit Mercy School of Law is seeking an individual who is an inspiring and energetic leader. The Dean will join a dynamic and diverse law school community that is close-knit and highly collegial and that embraces the Jesuit and Mercy devotion to the ethical practice of law and a commitment to the values of social justice. The Dean will have the ability to secure resources that will help guide the School's future; form relationships with a distinguished bench and bar that possess significant ties to the School of law; attract and maintain a growing student body of increasingly high quality and further enhance the School's stature among peer institutions locally and nationally.
The successful candidate will possess the following:
- A strong academic background, including a juris doctorate from an ABA/AALS-accredited institution or its international equivalent;
- Substantial leadership experience;
- Distinguished record of success in legal academia and/or in the practice of law;
- Academic and professional credentials that support an appointment as a tenured member of the faculty;
- Foresight, creativity, knowledge, vision and insight into the challenges facing legal education
- Ability to foster coalescence around shared values and advance the School’s stature and prominence;
- The communication skills necessary to advocate aggressively in and outside of the institution;
- Demonstrated success in fundraising and a desire to continue to build upon that success;
- Commitment to collaborative leadership;
- A commitment to diversity in all its manifestations;
- The ability to identify, develop and retain accomplished faculty, administration, and staff;
- The ability to identify, recruit, and retain students who will thrive at the School;
- Demonstrated success in fostering a culture of cooperation and respect among faculty, staff and students
- The ability to process competing ideas and perspectives within a transparent decision-making framework;
- Senior level management ability in the areas of strategic planning, budgeting and human resource matters; and
- The ability to function and be perceived as a leader within the University who works collaboratively with other deans to build interdisciplinary initiatives that leverage the intellectual and financial resources of the University for the benefit of all stakeholders and the communities served.
A comprehensive compensation package and relocation assistance will be offered to the successful candidate.
Nominations and applications will be held in confidence. Applications should include a letter of introduction outlining the applicant's background and qualifications for the position. This letter should specifically address the leadership attributes and professional competencies for this position; curriculum vita/resume; and contact information for five professional references, at least one of whom is a direct report, a second a colleague, and a third an individual to whom the applicant has reported directly.
In addition, the applicant should prepare an essay no longer than 500 words outlining his or her vision for UDM Law School given the current dynamic academic and professional environment. This document should be included as a part of the application package.
Confidential nominations and inquiries may be directed to:
Prof. Stephen Vogel – Chair, UDM Dean Search Committee, Professor School of Architecture
The University of Detroit Mercy is an Equal Opportunity Affirmative Action Employer with a culturally diverse faculty and student body and welcomes persons of all races and backgrounds.