The UMN College of Design (CDes) is seeking a Fabrication Program Director (Job Code 9342M2) responsible for strategically directing and implementing all student fabrication facilities and resources throughout the broadly diverse programs of design study within the College. This position is responsible for the long-term planning and the day-to-day operations of the W. L. Hall Workshop, the Digital Fabrication Labs on the Minneapolis and St. Paul campuses, and the CDes Material Store. The Fabrication Program Director collaborates with faculty and staff to ensure students from a variety of communities and identities have equitable access to fabrication facilities; cooperating especially with leaders of academic resource areas across the College and University. The Fabrication Program Director reports to the Assistant Dean for Strategy and Advancement.
The mission of the CDes Fabrication Shops and Labs is “learning through making.” CDes Fab Shops provide all students a safe and collaborative environment for the development of material literacy and process knowledge. The shops provide machine and hand tools for the manipulation of wood, metals, and other media. A Digital Fabrication Laboratory for students provides 3D printers, multi-axis routers, and laser, plasma and water-jet cutting machines. The shops create and provide support for the cross-pollination of different disciplines within CDes and across the University that are critical to the college’s mission of research, innovation, exploring new knowledge, and solving real world problems, while adhering to socially responsible, sustainable principles and collaborative design thinking. These supports are based on the Fabrication Program Director and staff’s extensive knowledge of materials, tools, processes, and safety protocols, and the ability to translate and communicate this knowledge for collaborators and constituents.
The Program Director’s multifaceted responsibilities are grounded in the following methodologies: the ability to teach non-traditionally in order to boost confidence and enthusiasm in the students; to be an ambassador for thinking, doing, and making using any means available – with a specific eye toward the myriad of sustainable/resilient/regenerative materials and practices; having multiple understandings of appropriate craft in pursuing ideas and the appropriate execution of those ideas from exploration to final form. This position is for an individual energized by people and ideas.
RESPONSIBILITIES Strategy and Planning (20%)
Act as a catalyst for innovation, exerting visionary, dynamic, and effective leadership of the fabrication resources and programs.
Plan, design, direct, and coordinate facilities and programs of current and emerging fabrication resources; with college leaders, propose, develop, and design new labs and fabrication resources.
Research new fabrication technologies and advise CDes community of ways to advance teaching, learning, and research through the integration of traditional and emerging technologies.
Identify, help secure as appropriate, and administer internal and external funding resources.
Implement data collection systems and analyze results to monitor and improve Fab Shop resources and to align day-to-day functions with the college’s mission.
Operational Management (30%)
Meet regularly with Department Heads, program leaders, faculty, and administration to discuss and act on issues and directives, as well as coordinate workloads and schedules in order to operate within shop capacity.
Assure that all fabrication resources, facilities, equipment, policies, and procedures comply with University, State and Federal codes, regulations and/or policies.
Ensure safety and security of area users, including equitable access and inclusivity for users from all backgrounds, communities, and identities.
Develop, propose and manage $300K+ fabrication resources budget.
Place and monitor orders for equipment, repairs, and consumable supplies, using established relationships to negotiate best pricing with vendors and manufacturers.
Oversee maintenance and repair of all fabrication equipment and facilities.
Oversee and help maintain area webpage and social networking content.
Design, fabricate, and install furnishings and building fixtures for program and collegiate functions as directed.
Educational Programming and Training (20%)
Collaborate with academic programs and faculty to determine specific curriculum needs.
Develop and deliver print, streaming, and in-person educational materials to empower users to complete course assigned work, develop mastery of fabrication processes, and realize designs.
Conduct user orientations, guest lectures, and topical demonstrations in support of courses and academic curricula and research programs.
Advocate for broader shop use by students, including programming to enable students to learn hands on life skills: mending, fixing, and repairing.
Co-teach courses with program faculty as requested depending on availability.
Supervision of Fabrication Staff (20%)
Hire, supervise, and develop a staff of 3+ professional employees and 12+ student employees who staff the fabrication shop and material store.
Manage schedules of 15-20 employees over 80 hrs/wk in three discrete work areas.
Plan, implement, and document staff educational and professional development to enhance performance, including but not limited to goal-setting, new assignments, and formal trainings.
Evaluate employee performance: encourage growth, implement plans for improvement if needed.
Foster a workplace environment where director and employees are committed to principles and practices of respect, diversity and inclusivity, continuous improvement, sustainability, excellent customer service and teamwork.
Retail Sales Site Management (10%)
Manage material resale operations for collegiate programs and user needs.
Establish and maintain material inventory and point-of sale operations.
Establish and maintain relationships with vendors and service providers.
Consult with programs and faculty to ensure shop users have necessary and appropriate materials and safety equipment available.
Advanced degree with 4 years’ experience or BA/BS with 6 years’ experience (post degree), including some supervisory experience (eg: teaching, student or staff supervision, project leadership, volunteer coordination).
Demonstrated commitment to promoting a diverse, inclusive, and respectful working environment.
Dedication to values of learning and excellence.
Demonstrated ability to work collaboratively and build connections across a variety of interest areas/disciplines.
Demonstrated experience taking initiative and resolving unanticipated and/or complex problems.
Ability to adapt to the unexpected and work creatively.
Commitment to excellent customer service.
Evidence of attention to detail with the ability to assess, organize, and prioritize responsibilities.
Excellent verbal/written communication and social skills (emotional intelligence) and ability to interact effectively as a member of a team within a broad diverse community.
Expertise and/or specialized training in traditional and emerging fabrication curriculum, equipment, processes, and software.
Experience in identification and procurement of internal and external funding, budget planning, and administration.
Experience in needs analysis, program development and program evaluation.
Experience creating projects using tools and methods found in the fabrication lab.
Internal Number: 334144
About University of Minnesota, Twin Cities
The University of Minnesota, founded in the belief that all people are enriched by understanding, is dedicated to the advancement of learning and the search for truth; to the sharing of this knowledge through education for a diverse community; and to the application of this knowledge to benefit the people of the state, the nation, and the world.