Liberal Arts Action Lab Director and Lecturer in Urban Studies, Trinity College

Full-time, year-round position with competitive salary and benefits; three-year (renewable)
Start Date: January 4, 2021

The Liberal Arts Action Lab Director and Lecturer in Urban Studies leads the Liberal Arts Action Lab (LAAL) at Trinity’s downtown campus in Hartford, CT. The Lab applies liberal arts skills to addressing community-defined projects, while offering students a unique, two-course experiential learning opportunity. The successful candidate will serve as the Lab’s lead instructor, recruit community projects and student/faculty teams, and shape the Lab’s broader approach and vision. The LAAL Director reports to the Director of the Center for Hartford Engagement and Research and serves as a lecturer in the Urban Studies Program.

Since 2018, the Lab has completed 22 projects with community partners, typically conducting four projects per semester. Community partners propose projects, which are prioritized by a Hartford Resident Advisory Board. The Lab then engages teams of faculty and students from Trinity and Capital Community College to spend a semester working on a project and delivering a product to a community partner. Students take a research methods course, which introduces participatory action research methods, including modules on collecting and analyzing qualitative and quantitative data, and the ethics of community-based engagement. Students immediately apply these skills by working on a project team.

Trinity seeks to have our faculty and staff reflect the demographics of our student body. We encourage applicants who share our commitment to diversity and inclusion. We especially welcome applications from women and underrepresented racial/ethnic groups. The College is an Equal Opportunity, Affirmative Action employer.

Trinity College is a highly selective, independent, nonsectarian liberal arts institution located in Connecticut’s capital, Hartford. With over 2100 full-time undergraduate students and 91 graduate students, the College maintains a rigorous academic profile complemented by a vibrant and diverse co-curricular program. The College enjoys the benefit of being situated in an urban center and has strong academic, social, and philanthropic connections to our home city of Hartford. Our student body is diverse, representing 41 states and 70 countries with 21% students of color and 50% women. Just over 90% of students live in campus residences. As a preeminent liberal arts college in an urban setting, Trinity College prepares students to be bold, independent thinkers who lead transformative lives.


  1. Directs the Liberal Arts Action Lab’s operations, and guides its development.
  2. Solicits community partner projects for the Lab and works with partners to refine proposals.
  3. Engages a Hartford Resident Advisory Board to prioritize selected Lab projects and ensure the involvement of Hartford’s diverse communities in the Lab’s operation.
  4. Coordinates the Action Lab’s core course and four project teams each semester, recruiting students and faculty project leaders and fellows.
  5. Teaches one methods course and two project teams each semester (spring and fall).
  6. Collaborates with designated faculty from Capital Community College to ensure full participation and inclusion of Capital students and faculty.
  7. With staff support, organizes communications efforts to publicize Lab news on and off campus.
  8. With staff support, contributes to data collection on programming and evaluates impacts.
  9. Assists in grant writing and fundraising for the Lab.
  10. Participates actively in the Center for Hartford Engagement and Research and the Urban Studies program, attending meetings and contributing to programmatic decision-making.

The successful candidate will have a Ph.D. in a relevant discipline (urban studies, sociology, public policy, anthropology, geography, or other social science discipline) in hand or expected by August 2021. The candidate will have knowledge of and enthusiasm for quantitative and qualitative research methods and data analysis from across liberal arts disciplines; expertise in urban research; and experience with some combination of quantitative and qualitative methodology including, but not limited to, ethnographic research, interviews, focus groups, Geographical Information Systems, data visualization, and action research. The candidate will exhibit a passion for learning and working in higher education; a commitment to civic engagement; a proven record of teaching; an ability to facilitate team-building and inclusion in diverse groups; strong writing and communication skills; as well as a capacity to use relevant technology, manage complex change, and assess outcomes. Project management experience and knowledge of Hartford would be ideal.

To ensure full consideration please submit a letter of application (including discussion of teaching, community engaged research experience, and commitment to diversity), CV, course syllabi and evaluations (if available), as well as at least three letters of reference to by November 6, 2020.

Trinity is an Equal Opportunity/Affirmative Action Employer.