Chair and Program Director, Department of Physical Therapy

April 22, 2022
Priority Deadline to Apply:
June 6, 2022
Saint Francis University

Position Description

Saint Francis University, in partnership with the national search firm Scott Healy & Associates, is pleased to announce a search for Chair and Program Director for the Department of Physical Therapy. Serving with the consent of the University as a member of the University senior faculty, the Chair provides overall leadership for the Department (Doctor of Physical Therapy, Bachelor of Science in Health Science, and Bachelor of Exercise Physiology), including but not limited to maintenance of Department academic standards, development and implementation of curriculum, and administration of Department personnel. Reporting to the Dean of the School of Health Sciences and Education, the Chair is the primary liaison between the Department and the University administration. All responsibilities are conducted with an awareness of the mission, goals and philosophy of the program and the University's curriculum.

Saint Francis University seeks applicants that reflect the diversity of its student body and the community they serve. Applicants who have experience working with a diverse range of faculty, staff, and students, and who can contribute to an inclusive climate are encouraged to identify their experiences in these areas. Rank will be commensurate with credentials and experience.

Essential Job Duties:

  • Plans, implements, reviews, and evaluates Department goals and programs in consultation with the Curriculum Coordinator, Department’s Student Affairs Coordinator, and Department faculty;
  • Ensures compliance with the Commission on Accreditation in Physical Therapy Education’s (CAPTE) Evaluative Criteria for Accreditation of Education Programs for the Preparation of Physical Therapists;
  • Oversees all faculty and staff in the Department in regard to course scheduling, curriculum, promotion, tenure, professional development, academic standards, advising, and personnel issues;
  • Oversees Departmental budget;
  • Submits annually to the Dean of the School of Health Sciences and Education The University Annual Report detailing the role and importance of the Department as a center of excellence; Department strengths, accomplishments, and challenges; Department goals and objectives; Department method of assessment and outcome accountability plans; and recommendations for new program development and resources;
  • Monitors, with the aid of Department faculty acting as student advisors, and the Center for Academic Success, progress of students majoring in the department;
  • Collaborates with the Office of Enrollment Management in student recruitment and related matters;
  • Collaborates with Career Services and the Alumni Office regarding the vocational objectives and subsequent careers of students in the Department;
  • Teaches in the professional curriculum and participates in student advisement; and 
  • Performs other duties as assigned by the Dean of the School of Health Sciences and the VPAA.


Minimum Requirements:

  • Graduate of an accredited physical therapist professional education program;
  • Academic doctoral degree in physical therapy or a related field (PhD, EdD, DSc or equivalent);
  • Licensed PT, or eligible for licensure, in Pennsylvania;
  • Minimum of 3 years of physical therapy clinical practice experience;
  • Minimum of 6 years of full-time higher education experience;
  • Record of teaching excellence in an accredited entry-level DPT program;
  • Knowledge of CAPTE requirements and accreditation processes; and
  • Commitment to increasing diversity and inclusion within the profession.

Preferred Requirements:

  • Prior administrative experience, preferably as a physical therapy program director or assistant director;
  • Demonstrated ability to provide leadership in an academic setting, including strong communication skills, personnel management and positive team building;
  • Record of fostering an inclusive and collaborative team;
  • Experience with curriculum development;
  • Vision for the future and innovative strategies for physical therapy education;
  • Experience using technology to enhance the teaching and learning experience;
  • Experience with strategic planning initiatives;
  • Active APTA member.

About The Institution

About the School of Health Sciences and Education:
Saint Francis of Assisi had a legendary gift for caring. Saint Francis University, in turn, has helped thousands of students find their vocations in healthcare. In the School of Health Sciences and Education you will find innovative educational opportunities and experiences to prepare students to provide competent, compassionate, and ethical care to regional and global communities including the medically under-served in rural areas. Programs of study include American Sign Language, Education, Exercise Physiology, Health Care Studies, Nursing, Occupational Therapy, Physical Therapy (accelerated 3+3 or entry level DPT), Physician Assistant Studies, Psychology, Public Health, and Social Work.

About Saint Francis University:
Saint Francis University is one of the oldest Catholic universities in the United States, and the oldest Franciscan institution of higher education in the country. Faith, generosity, respect, discovery, and joy are integral to SFU’s identity, and we seek to attract members to the community with a passion to share Catholic-Franciscan values and a dedicated desire to help students grow into compassionate, caring, and fulfilled professionals. The school structure at Saint Francis melds the highest level of academic programming with curricular and co-curricular experiences to create a holistic learning setting for students. The four schools are: Shields School of Business; Health Sciences and Education; Science, Technology, Engineering, Arts, & Mathematics; and Francis Worldwide, the School of Continuing Studies.

The institution is rich in history: the seeds of what has become Saint Francis University and our Franciscan identity were planted in 1847 by six Franciscan friars from Ireland who founded a boys' academy in Loretto. The guiding principles of these founders are the values we embrace at Saint Francis University to this day.

About The Community

About the greater Loretto, PA community:
Our 600-acre scenic campus is located atop the Allegheny Mountains in Loretto, Pennsylvania, 80 miles east of Pittsburgh. The small town of Loretto provides members of the campus community the benefits of a historic and charming rural setting close to urban amenities. With affordable housing markets and living expenses below the national average, the area offers a safe, high quality of living at a manageable price. For families, the local school districts, both public and private, are highly rated in academic achievement, and the region features four conveniently located comprehensive medical facilities, including a Level 1 trauma center.

For the outdoors enthusiast, each change of season opens up new possibilities for adventure. Opportunities for hiking, skiing, mountain biking, and kayaking are all minutes away from campus. Major metropolitan areas are close by, including Pittsburgh (1.5 hour), Washington, D.C. (3 hours), Baltimore (3 hours), Philadelphia (4 hours), and New York City (5 hours).

Application Process

Please submit all applications and nominations electronically to the University’s search consultant:

Danan Tsan, Vice President
Scott Healy & Associates 

Complete applications should include the following:

  1. Cover Letter outlining your interest and qualifications for the position;
  2. Updated CV;
  3. Three professional references with contact information. 

Applications received by June 6, 2022, will receive priority consideration.  Review of applications will begin immediately and will continue until the position is filled.

Diversity Statement:
Being a member of the Saint Francis University community means that you are part of a supportive family, one that embraces life, celebrates individuality and understands that diversity strengthens the institution as a whole. Our campus is a haven characterized by equal access and respectful participation for all groups and individuals. Accordingly, we are committed to seeking out candidates with similar values and can apply their own unique experiences and perspectives in supporting and growing our vision.

If you have questions, need assistance, or require special accommodations, please contact the Office of Human Resources at (814) 472-3264.

Saint Francis University does not discriminate on the basis of gender, gender identity, age, race, color, ethnicity, religion, sexual orientation, marital status, disability, pregnancy status, veteran status, predisposing genetic characteristic or any protected classification. This policy applies to all programs and activities of the University, including, but not limited to, admission and employment practices, educational policies, scholarship and loan programs and athletic or other University-sponsored programs. The following person has been designated to handle inquiries regarding the University's nondiscrimination policy: Lynne Banks, Associate Dean of Students,

Title IX Coordinator, (814) 472.3352,