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Office of System Planning


Mary Anne Fitzpatrick

Vice President for System Planning

Mary Anne Fitzpatrick, a Carolina Distinguished Professor, spent the bulk of her early research career writing about the complex dynamics of human communication. As the Vice President for System Planning, she created a new office charged with working directly with the leadership and faculty of the various campuses in the USC system. Fitzpatrick is responsible for advancing the quality, coordination, effectiveness and long-range planning for the University of South Carolina system.

In 2016, the Board of Trustees appointed her as the interim chancellor of USC Upstate to facilitate the search for new leadership and to continue the positive trajectory of the university while ensuring a successful transition for the incoming chancellor.

Fitzpatrick served as the founding dean of the College of Arts and Sciences in the ten years leading up to her appointment as Vice President. During this time, she increased the size of the faculty and opened new centers, institutes and programs. She took the college through one of the worst economic downturns in the history of South Carolina while raising over $100 million in private philanthropic support for the college during the capital campaign.

Prior to her appointment at the University of South Carolina, Fitzpatrick held a number of administrative positions at the University of Wisconsin-Madison, including serving as special assistant to the chancellor on distributed learning and deputy dean of the College of Letters and Science. She also held the WARF Kellett Professorship at UW in honor of her research achievements. 

Fitzpatrick is a fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS), the International Communication Association (ICA) and the International Association for Relationship Research. Fitzpatrick also served as the president of the Council of Colleges of Arts and Sciences and president of the International Communication Association.  

Office of System Planning