Department of English and Comparative Literature at San Jose State University

Assistant Professor of Creative Writing (Poetry)

Department Summary

The Department of English and Comparative Literature at San José State University seeks qualified candidates for a tenure-track Assistant Professor position teaching Poetry and other forms of Creative Writing to a diverse student body at both the undergraduate and graduate levels.  The ideal candidate would have a deep understanding of the unique experiences and issues facing Latinx/Chicanx, Black, Indigenous, and other writers of color in the publishing world and beyond.

The successful applicant would join a department with ten other Assistant Professors, all of whom are currently enjoying course release time each semester specifically dedicated to their writing and research. Although a highly productive, creative and research-rich environment, we take our commitment to teaching very seriously and teach both MA and MFA students as well as four concentrations in our BA program, including one in Creative Writing.  Faculty and students also benefit from the presence of the Center for Literary Arts, bringing a diverse range of authors to our students, and Reed Magazine, the oldest student-run literary magazine west of the Mississippi.  See our website here:

This position is an excellent opportunity for a teacher-artist interested in launching a career within an institution that is a national leader in graduating historically underserved students. SJSU has achieved both HSI (Hispanic Serving Institution) and AANAPISI (Asian American and Native American Pacific Islander-Serving Institution) status. Moreover, 40% of our student population are first-generation and 38% are Pell-qualified. As a result, we rank #1 nationally in increasing student upward mobility.

Required Qualifications

  • PhD or MFA with at least one collection of poetry or a chapbook published and actively publishing poetry in literary magazines and journals.
  • Applicants should demonstrate an awareness of and sensitivity to the educational goals of a multicultural population as might have been gained in cross-cultural study, training, teaching and other comparable experience.
  • Ability to teach Poetry workshops and other forms of Creative Writing to a diverse group of students in courses ranging from Introduction to Creative Writing to courses designed for MFA thesis writers.

Preferred Qualifications

  • Preparation to teach literature courses such as Literature of the Americas (including Caribbean or Latin American), Latinx/Chicanx literature, Literature of the Borderlands, or Topics in Ethnic American Literature.
  • Interest in/ability to publish relevant scholarship in literary or cultural criticism in addition to creative writing.
  • Understanding of the unique experiences and issues facing Latinx/Chicanx, Black, Indigenous, and other writers of color in the publishing world and beyond.


  • Participate in shared governance, usually in department, college, and university committee and other service assignments such as mentorship of MFA thesis writers.
  • Teach approximately five courses a year during the probationary period.
  • Design and teach introductory and advanced level creative writing workshops, as well as possible literature courses such as Literature for Global Understanding: The Americas, Multiethnic literature courses, or topics in Ethnic American literature.
  • Develop and sustain an ongoing record of productivity as a publishing poet and other forms of professional engagement with the disciplines of creative writing and literature.
  • Demonstrate awareness and experience understanding the needs of a student population of great diversity – in age, cultural background, ethnicity, primary language and academic preparation – through inclusive course materials, teaching strategies and advisement.

Compensation - Commensurate with qualifications and experience. See Benefits Summary for details.

Starting Date: August 2021

Eligibility - Employment is contingent upon proof of eligibility to work in the United States.

Application Procedure

Click Apply Now (link below) to complete the SJSU Online Employment Application and attach the following documents:

  • letter of interest
  • curriculum vitae
  • statement of teaching philosophy and interest that specifically addresses how you are prepared to teach a diverse student population.
  • a brief writing sample of no more than 6 poems (or ten pages of text), plus a statement of future writing or research plans
  • three references with contact information

Inquires may be directed to the Department Chair or Search Committee Chair – Noelle Brada-Williams at or (408) 924-4439.

The University

San José State University enrolls over 35,700 students, a significant percentage of whom are members of minority groups.  As such, this position is for scholars interested in a career at a national leader in graduating URM students. SJSU is a Hispanic Serving Institution (HSI) and Asian American and Native American Pacific Islander (AANAPISI) Serving Institution; 40% of our students are first-generation, and 38% are Pell-qualified. The university is currently ranked fifth nationally in increasing student upward mobility.  The University is committed to increasing the diversity of its faculty so our disciplines, students, and the community can benefit from multiple ethnic and gender perspectives.

San José State University is California’s oldest institution of public higher learning. Located in downtown San José (Pop. 1,000,000) in the heart of Silicon Valley, SJSU is part of one of the most innovative regions in the world. As Silicon Valley’s public university, SJSU combines dynamic teaching, research, and university-industry experiences to prepare students to address the biggest problems facing society.  SJSU is a member of the 23-campus California State University (CSU) system.

Equal Employment Statement

San José State University is an Affirmative Action/Equal Opportunity Employer. We consider qualified applicants for employment without regard to race, color, religion, national origin, age, gender, gender identity/expression, sexual orientation, genetic information, medical condition, marital status, veteran status, or disability. This policy applies to all San José State University students, faculty, and staff as well as University programs and activities. Reasonable accommodations are made for applicants with disabilities who self-disclose. Note that all San José State University employees are considered mandated reporters under the California Child Abuse and Neglect Reporting Act and are required to comply with the requirements set forth in CSU Executive Order 1083 as a condition of employment.

Additional Information

A background check (including a criminal records check) must be completed satisfactorily before any candidate can be offered a position with the CSU.  Failure to satisfactorily complete the background check may affect the application status of applicants or continued employment of current CSU employees who apply for the position.

Contact Information

Noelle Brada-Williams, Department Chair
English and Comparative Literature
One Washington Square
FOB 102
San Jose
Contact Phone: 
(408) 924-4439