What Does a Center Dean Do?

C. Daw

Many centers are opening up across the country within various industries including law, medical, education and arts. These centers often service the smaller branches of larger organizations. For instance, many universities have a science center or arts center and hospitals are opening cancer centers or children’s centers. These centers generally specialize in one particular field and offer specialized services to their clients or customers. As these centers are being developed, the need to hire a center dean who is responsible for the overall operations of the center is also being developed.

Man with hands on his hips
Man with hands on his hips

A center dean would be responsible for the center and be able to direct and manage the center that they are assigned to. They would schedule the staffing at the center which would include hiring, maintaining, training, and ensuring that the staff worked up to the center’s standards. A center dean needs to work within the community and profession organizations to be sure that the integrity of the center is secured. It would be their direct responsibility to continue the growth of the center and develop the appropriate marketing strategies, as well as keeping the center financially on track. The dean would also need to make sure that the building was well maintained and all safety standards were being met.

Qualifications for a center dean vary greatly depending on the operations of the center. One will certainly need to have a business degree; either a masters or a bachelors, and have experience or training in the specific field that the center is based on. The ideal candidate would have marketing and organizational skills, as well as good communication skills and the ability to lead and manage. These skills would be needed to become a center dean to ensure that the job is performed correctly. Some working knowledge of community relations would also be helpful for this position.

The outlook for this position is very good within all industry fields. Centers have become the leading trend and many industry organizations seem to be leaning toward this method of specialized services. These jobs are often in fields where there is always a demand, like the medical, law or education industries. The only downside would be that there is only one dean hired per center so it may require relocation to another city if there are no local centers. Some centers are hiring assistant center deans which could be used as a stepping stone to the head center dean position.

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