Photo: Harris Pastides

Harris Pastides

Harris Pastides began his presidency at the University of South Carolina on Aug. 1, 2008. Just a few months later, the Great Recession began. Strong in the face of adversity, Pastides promised to accelerate USC’s momentum as a world-class university. He has kept that promise. Today, serving in his eighth year, USC is experiencing remarkable growth and positive change.

USC Columbia’s freshman classes have grown continuously while posting the highest average SAT scores in university history. USC’s Honors College has been named the No. 1 public honors college in the nation, and the Palmetto State’s only Carnegie top-tier university is also home to top programs in areas such as undergraduate international business; public health; engineering; and hospitality, retail and sport management. In addition, Carolina’s Promise, USC’s historic capital campaign successfully exceeded the $1 billion goal through gifts and pledges from more than 120,000 donors.

An unwavering advocate for a superior student experience, President Pastides encourages engagement beyond the classroom through leadership, service learning, international experience, internships and undergraduate research. Innovative programs like Palmetto College, On Your Time Graduation, Gamecock Gateway and Gamecock Guarantee are successfully providing greater access, flexibility and affordability to South Carolinians seeking a higher education degree. To date, 68,507 degrees have been awarded systemwide during Pastides’ presidency. He often says, “Nothing makes me prouder than the students we enroll and those that we graduate.”

In January 2015, during a time of great reform and transformation, Pastides was selected to serve as the chairman of the NCAA’s Division I Board of Directors. He also serves on many local and state boards including the South Carolina Governor’s School for the Arts and Humanities.

Prior to joining the university’s faculty as dean of the Arnold School of Public Health, Pastides was a professor of epidemiology and chairman of the Department of Biostatistics and Epidemiology at the University of Massachusetts Amherst.
 He received his master’s in public health and his Ph.D. in epidemiology from Yale University, President Pastides and the first lady, Patricia Moore-Pastides, live on USC’s historic Horseshoe.


Harris Pastides

Speeches, Remarks and Editorials

From Convocation to Commencement to many in between, President Pastides is a frequent speaker. Selected speeches, remarks and editorials can be found here.