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President Medford, MA

Tufts University is an exceptionally strong, highly diverse, globally-engaged, and student-centered institution with a commitment to a liberal education. At its core is the undergraduate “college on a hill,” which is nested in a mid-sized, research-intensive, AAU university. The University possesses a unique constellation of graduate and professional schools with a constantly improving scholarly and research profile. Tufts is infused with a civic aura that is its tradition, and it prospers in the higher education and high technology ecology of the greater Boston metropolitan area.

The University was founded in 1852 on the ancestral homelands of the Massachusett tribe. At different points in history, this land hosted the estate of the first governor of the Commonwealth of Massachusetts, a slaveholding plantation, and a way station on the Underground Railroad. The Universalists who founded the University preached abolition and the fierce “republicanism” that was an antidote both to Southern reaction and to the established institutions of wealth and power in the North. They founded Tufts as a small liberal arts college perched on a hillside, with an expansive view of the city of Boston in the distance, a view it retains.

Today, Tufts attracts exceptionally strong students and faculty, competitive with the world’s finest universities. The University educates approximately 13,300 students, almost equally divided between undergraduate and graduate students. At the undergraduate level, it is one of the most selective universities in the country, with an acceptance rate of 9 percent for the class of 2026. The graduate and professional schools are similarly distinguished and selective. Despite the clear academic strengths of the student body, Tufts has a culture of community and support; it is not a cutthroat place, but one where students develop genuine, lifelong friends. It has a strong tradition of teaching and research: the 1580 faculty members—995 of whom are full-time—are known as the quintessential teacher-scholars. Once the Medical School and Wellforce health system—now Tufts Medicine—are fully aligned, the University will do approximately $250 million in sponsored research, up from $162 million in 2013. The students and faculty are supported in their work by approximately 3,400 dedicated staff, who are essential members of the community.

The University is on strong financial footing with an annual operating budget of approximately $1 billion and net assets totaling $3.6 billion; this includes an endowment totaling $2.7 billion, up from $1.5 billion in 2011. The President, Board, other senior leaders, and dedicated alumni volunteers have raised approximately $1.4 billion toward the comprehensive Brighter World campaign, and they expect to reach, if not surpass, the campaign’s $1.5 billion goal before the next President arrives on campus. In the immediate past and financed for the immediate future, Tufts has invested over $1 billion in campus capital improvements through a combination of university funds, fundraising, and bonding.

Tufts seeks a President who will accelerate the University’s already considerable momentum and secure its position as a great, mid-sized, student-centered research university. The President will be a seasoned and energetic leader with the intellectual vision, moral clarity, and global perspective to guide Tufts, and the personal qualities to inspire the broad and diverse University community. Compelling candidates will bring demonstrated experience crafting and advancing a vision and strategic plan for an institution; an inherently interdisciplinary outlook with the ability to bring people and units together across institutional and disciplinary boundaries; an innate commitment to diversity, inclusion, anti-racism, active citizenship, and civic engagement; an entrepreneurial approach to fundraising and developing new sources of revenue; a leadership style that centers people above all else; and a strong moral compass to lead the University through the unknown challenges that lie ahead.

All applications, nominations, and inquiries should be submitted in confidence electronically below.

John Isaacson is leading this search with Keith Mason.


Tufts is enriched by the many experiences and perspectives each individual member brings to our community. Tufts does not discriminate in admissions, employment, or in any of its educational programs or activities on the basis of race, color, national or ethnic origin, ancestry, age, religion, disability, sex or gender, gender identity and/or expression, sexual orientation, military or veteran status, genetic information, the intersection of these identities, or any other characteristic protected under applicable federal, state, or local law. Tufts is an equal employment opportunity/affirmative action employer. For more information, visit: https://oeo.tufts.edu/policies-procedures/non-discrimination-statement


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