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Arnold School of Public Health


James Hardin named Associate Dean for Faculty Affairs and Curriculum

September 22, 2016

Epidemiology and Biostatistics Associate Professor James Hardin has been chosen to serve as the first Associate Dean for Faculty Affairs and Curriculum for the Arnold School of Public Health. The new position was created to oversee the School’s faculty promotion and tenure process, faculty concerns/grievance, curriculum development/management, graduate student services, and workforce development.

In his new role, Hardin will serve as a liaison between the Arnold School and groups such as The Graduate School, Office of the University Registrar, Commission on Higher Education, Office of Academic Programs, and others. He will also work closely with Associate Dean for Diversity, Equity and Inclusion David Simmons, Associate Dean for Operations and Accreditation Lee Pearson, and Associate Dean for Research Alan Decho

“Dr. Hardin has had a remarkably productive career here—excelling in new methods development, consultations, publishing multiple books, many journal articles, graduating many students, and receiving multiple awards for his teaching and research,” says Dean Thomas Chandler. “He is an experienced leader and a great example of the ‘complete’ faculty at USC.” 

Dr. Hardin has had a remarkably productive career here...He is an experienced leader and a great example of the ‘complete’ faculty at USC.

-Thomas Chandler, Dean of the Arnold School

Hardin looks forward to developing materials and guidelines that will help faculty succeed. He is particularly looking forward to expanding the School’s efforts in mentorship and programs for faculty development.

“Our School invests a lot of time and finances to attract the most talented employees we can find,” he says. “I want to ensure those employees have the guidelines and training to succeed because the long-term growth and success of the Arnold School depends on its faculty.”

Originally from Texas, Hardin earned back-to-back bachelor’s, master’s, and doctoral (Ph.D.) degrees from Texas A&M University in preparation for a career as a mathematical statistician. During his academic programs, he concentrated on the applications of statistical models to problems in atmospheric science, including global climate change.

I want to ensure those employees have the guidelines and training to succeed because the long-term growth and success of the Arnold School depends on its faculty.

-James Hardin, Associate Dean for Faculty Affairs and Curriculum

He had hoped to continue that meaningful work, but his first job after graduation, where he worked on radiation monitoring rather than solving atmospheric problems—fell a bit short of meeting those aspirations. “Like many graduate students, my initial job didn’t exactly line up with the subject matter of my graduate work,” says Hardin. He then took a position at Stata, a general purpose statistics software company. As Director of Technical Support, he had to be familiar with all aspects of the software, which provided an introduction to econometrics, complex survey data, and the subject of his future career—biostatistics.

“Working at Stata was an exciting blend of consultation, research and innovation,” he says. “In many ways, the four and a half years I spent developing software was my second education. Ultimately, my biggest contributions to the software were centered on those tools that were most useful for public health data.”  

The Arnold School was the land of opportunity when I arrived here, and it still is!

-James Hardin, Associate Dean for Faculty Affairs and Curriculum

Hardin officially became a biostatistician when he accepted a position at the Arnold School in 2003 that was split between the Core for Applied Research and Evaluation and the Department of Epidemiology and Biostatistics. “Not having previous tenure track experience, and having spent time in several industries, I was looking for entry on campus,” says the 2013 Arnold School of Public Health Faculty Research Award winner. “I knew that once there, I would have the chance to transition to tenure track if I proved myself. The Arnold School was the land of opportunity when I arrived here, and it still is!” 

In addition to this new appointment, Hardin will continue serving as Division Director of Biostatistics and fulfilling his ongoing faculty responsibilities of directing students, working on funded research and teaching. His new office is located on the fifth floor of Discovery in Suite 503, alongside the Office of Research.