“Faculty 500” initiative aims to hire 200 new faculty by fall

Redesigned Faculty Search Committee Toolkit provides departments with resources to help

Last summer, we shared the exciting news that UF will hire 500 new faculty beginning this year to further enhance teaching and research and to continue to grow as one of the best research universities in the nation.

To support these efforts, UF Human Resources recently partnered with 160over90 and University Communications to develop a new recruitment brochure and has launched an accompanying promotional website. In addition, the Faculty Search Committee Toolkit has been redesigned to better support departments undertaking faculty searches. The toolkit serves as a general guide and includes the steps of the faculty search process, as well as resources related to attracting the best candidates, understanding the market, engaging with and evaluating candidates, hiring the right candidate and supporting new hires as they transition into their roles.

Many searches are already underway, and the university expects to hire 200 new faculty members by this fall. Funding for the new hires will come from state allocations, alumni and friends, as well as university resources.

“We are laser-focused on several areas that will have the greatest impact on our educational and research missions while giving UF an edge to compete successfully with the nation’s other top institutions for talented faculty, students and staff,” President Kent Fuchs said. “UF ranks among the top 10 public research universities and we have our eye on being among the top five.”

The hiring plan was created to address two primary university goals: reaching top-ranked status by strengthening various research disciplines and improving the university’s student-faculty ratio, a widely recognized metric in determining an institution’s excellence and stature. (UF’s current student-faculty ratio is 20 to 1; the 500 new hires ultimately will result in a student-faculty ratio of 16 to 1.)

The new faculty will be hired in a variety of fields, said UF Provost Joe Glover, but a good portion will be in STEM (science, technology, engineering and mathematics) and health. Fuchs said that UF has already made tremendous progress and the new initiative will propel UF to the highest ranks.

UF Recruitment & Staffing has also established a Strategic Talent Group, an internal consulting service that will assist UF departments with high-level and hard-to-fill positions. The group helped develop the recruitment brochure to aid employees involved in the faculty search process and partnered with a local publisher to develop the 2018 Guide to Greater Gainesville to share with candidates who are considering a move to Gainesville.

“We are thrilled to be working toward UF’s goal of making it into the top five by growing our impressive and diverse faculty,” said UFHR Director of Recruitment & Staffing Melissa Curry. “This is just one of the ways we are achieving preeminence through people.”

To stay up-to-date with Faculty 500 news, follow the search on Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn.