Monday, April 22, 2013

Director of the Research and Learning Services Department

Under the general direction of the Director of Olin and Uris Libraries, the Director of the Department of Research and Learning Services (R&LS) in Olin and Uris Libraries provides leadership, guidance, expertise, encouragement, and inspiration to a department whose mission is to enable and enhance the academic pursuits of Cornell faculty and students. 

The R&LS Department consists of 14 librarians, 7 staff members and a number of student workers. The department provides reference, instruction, collection development, outreach, and liaison services in the humanities and social sciences, using our research collections of electronic, print, map, and media resources. The primary user population comprises students, faculty and staff in the College of Arts and Sciences, but the department also serves the entire Cornell patron base in researching, teaching and learning in the humanities and social sciences.

The Director will play a critical role in charting the future directions of public services in Olin and Uris Libraries, as well as the entire Cornell University Library system and must therefore be an exceptional advocate for our current and anticipated future patron needs, versatile as a leader and manager, flexible in outlook, and an excellent team player.


Develop strategic directions for information, research and outreach services;

Supervise and develop professional and classified staff;
Oversee reference, instruction, and outreach activities;
Foster effective working relationships with library and academic colleagues;
Enhance and assess service quality;
Collaborate with other academic support units to develop and implement programs that enhance teaching and learning;
Play a key role in library-wide planning initiatives;
Serve as liaison to one or more departments or programs in the social sciences;
Engage actively in research, presentation and publication efforts both within Cornell and in the national arena.


An ALA-accredited MLS or equivalent graduate degree.

Strong leadership track record, be forward-looking and communicate a clear vision;
Successful managerial experience;
Strong communication skills;
Commitment to integrating library reference and instruction services into the life of the academic community to support its teaching and learning missions;
Capacity to work with a wide-range of patrons—undergraduates, graduate students, faculty, and visiting scholars;
Have enthusiasm, energy and a passionate commitment to public services in a major research library in one of the nation’s premier universities.

Preferred Qualifications:

A background in the social sciences is preferred. 

In addition to its outstanding collections, the Cornell University Library is a major research institution that provides expertise and innovative services to the University’s research and learning community. The Library develops strategic partnerships with faculty and research institutions on campus and around the world and promotes a culture of broad inquiry to further the University’s mission to discover, preserve, and disseminate knowledge and creative expression.

The Olin and Uris Libraries hold over 2 million print volumes in the humanities and social sciences, in addition to substantial maps, media and electronic holdings. With their focus on the social science and humanities, the adjacent libraries form a unified collection greatly valued by scholars at all levels for its depth, breadth and accessibility.

Cornell University is an Ivy League comprehensive research university located in Ithaca in the scenic Finger Lakes region of upstate New York. The town and university offer a unique cosmopolitan and international atmosphere in a beautiful natural setting of waterfalls, gorges, and lakes. The university comprises 14 schools with 2600 faculty members and 20,000 students enrolled in undergraduate, graduate and professional schools. The Cornell University Library is a vigorous professional organization of 468 staff with a strong track record in innovation and service quality. It consists of 20 libraries, including a nearby high-density storage facility with a capacity of 6.8 million volumes. It contains nearly 8 million printed volumes, 62,000 current serials, 378,000 networked electronic resources, and rich materials in other formats. Ranking 9th among 113 North American academic library members of the Association of Research Libraries, the Library was a recipient of the Association of College and Research Libraries’ Excellence in Academic Libraries Award in 2002. The library is a leading academic research library with outstanding collections, service and instructional programs, and a leader in digital library applications including digitization of its print collections and development of strategies for curation of the research output of its faculty.


Comprehensive benefits package including 22 vacation days, 11 paid holidays, health insurance, life insurance, and university retirement contributions (TIAA-CREF and other options). Professional travel funding available.

Applications requested by May 15, 2013.  Please include a cover letter, resume, and the names, phone numbers, and addresses for three references. Review of applications will begin immediately and will continue until the position is filled. Salary will be competitive and commensurate with experience. Visa sponsorship is not available for this position.

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