Careers at Virginia Tech

Department Head and Professor

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Work type: Teaching & Research Faculty
Senior management: Agriculture & Life Sciences
Department: Biochemistry
Location: Blacksburg, Virginia
Categories: Agriculture / Life Science

Job Description

Virginia Tech seeks applications and nominations for the position of Professor and Head of the Department of Biochemistry (BCHM) in the College of Agriculture and Life Sciences, a tenured twelve-month academic and administrative appointment. The Department is seeking effective, collaborative, and creative leadership to develop and maintain excellent research and education programs. The Department currently consists of 17 tenure-track faculty members, 16 research faculty, two collegiate faculty, two professional academic advisors, 12 research technicians, and nine support staff. The Department boasts over $4M in annual research expenditures, with active, extramurally-funded research programs in diverse areas of biochemistry including: protein structure/function, vector-borne diseases, signal transduction, and the molecular basis of human health and disease. The Department has a growing, vibrant graduate program and the faculty also participate in interdisciplinary research and graduate programs including: Genetics, Bioinformatics, and Computational Biology; Molecular and Cellular Biology; Translational Biology, Medicine and Health; the Translational Plant Sciences Center; the Center for Emerging Zoonotic and Arthropod-borne Pathogens; the Global Change Center; and the Center for Drug Discovery. The Department is also dedicated to excellence in undergraduate education, and has an ASBMB-accredited undergraduate biochemistry program, with approximately 500 majors, one of the largest in the nation. The Department of Biochemistry is an inclusive environment that embraces a shared governance structure in which collaborative relationships extend to all categories of faculty. Additional information about the Department may be found at

The successful candidate will have a track record of internationally-recognized, extramurally-funded research and scholarship. The Head will provide visionary and strategic leadership for the Department and be a strong advocate for faculty, staff, and students both within and outside of the University. The Head will effectively communicate with other departments, colleges, and university administration; provide leadership in recruitment of new faculty and staff; foster innovation in undergraduate and graduate education programs; encourage and support the professional development and promotion of faculty and staff; prepare and effectively manage departmental budgets; coordinate the integration of new faculty and staff into interdisciplinary research programs; help leverage new funding for research and training; and foster, promote, and expand a diverse and inclusive community conducive to faculty and student excellence.

Virginia Tech is a public land-grant university of the Commonwealth of Virginia, and is located in Blacksburg, a bucolic setting adjacent to the scenic Blue Ridge Mountains. The University has a total enrollment of 37,000 students, with approximately 3,700 in the College of Agriculture and Life Sciences.

Required Qualifications

Earned doctorate in biochemistry or related field and eligible for tenure at the rank of full professor; ability to effectively manage resources and a commitment to financial transparency; team-building skills with evidence of effective group leadership at a departmental level and/or in multi-investigator projects; proven effectiveness in personnel management, interpersonal communication, and consensus building; demonstrated experience in assessing priorities and the implementation of strategic planning in a multidisciplinary environment; an understanding of, and commitment to, the three missions (research, teaching, and extension) of a land-grant university; and a commitment to Virginia Tech’s principles of diversity, inclusivity, and community.

Preferred Qualifications

Experience in identifying, procuring, and sustaining extramural funding through individual and large scale-grants, such as program project grants, training grants, etc. Experience in teaching at the undergraduate and graduate levels. The ability to foster effective collaborations within the department and other programs and units across the university, state, national and international levels; and a working knowledge of the land-grant university model.

Appointment Type


Salary Information

Commensurate with Experience

Review Date


Additional Information


The successful candidate will be required to have a criminal conviction check.


About Virginia Tech

Dedicated to its motto, Ut Prosim (That I May Serve), Virginia Tech pushes the boundaries of knowledge by taking a hands-on, transdisciplinary approach to preparing scholars to be leaders and problem-solvers. A comprehensive land-grant institution that enhances the quality of life in Virginia and throughout the world, Virginia Tech is an inclusive community dedicated to knowledge, discovery, and creativity. The university offers more than 280 majors to a diverse enrollment of more than 36,000 undergraduate, graduate, and professional students in eight undergraduate colleges, a school of medicine, a veterinary medicine college, Graduate School, and Honors College. The university has a significant presence across Virginia, including the Innovation Campus in Northern Virginia; the Health Sciences and Technology Campus in Roanoke; sites in Newport News and Richmond; and numerous Extension offices and research centers. A leading global research institution, Virginia Tech conducts more than $500 million in research annually.

Virginia Tech does not discriminate against employees, students, or applicants on the basis of age, color, disability, sex (including pregnancy), gender, gender identity, gender expression, genetic information, national origin, political affiliation, race, religion, sexual orientation, or military status, or otherwise discriminate against employees or applicants who inquire about, discuss, or disclose their compensation or the compensation of other employees or applicants, or on any other basis protected by law.

If you are an individual with a disability and desire an accommodation, please contact Dr. David Gerrard at during regular business hours at least 10 business days prior to the event.

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