Committee of faculty, staff to advance new Excellence Initiative



A new committee of faculty and staff will begin reviewing recommendations on how to best utilize approximately $17 million contributed to the Excellence Initiative by colleges and service units across campus.

Earlier this year, the University of South Carolina announced the establishment of the Excellence Initiative to support a range of important projects, including recruiting top faculty, ensuring excellence in the classroom and creating new experiential learning opportunities for students across academic disciplines.

“We have limited resources and yet we are committed to finding ways to move the needle,” Provost Joan Gabel says. “This is the reality of the modern era of public higher education, and we must rely on each other to achieve excellence. We do that with a sense of purpose and an appreciation for everyone on campus contributing to this effort.”

Stephen Cutler, dean of the College of Pharmacy will lead the committee who are advisory to the Gabel and President Harris Pastides. Other committee members include:

  • Claudia Benitez-Nelson, distinguished professor, School of the Earth, Ocean & Environment
  • Doug Foster, chief information officer, Division of Information Technology
  • Jennifer Mandelbaum, graduate student, Arnold School of Public Health
  • Leah Moody, member, USC Board of Trustees (ex officio)
  • Prakash Nagarkatti, vice president for research and distinguished professor, School of Medicine
  • Todd Shaw, chair, Department of Political Science
  • Tracey Weldon-Stewart, associate dean for diversity and inclusion, College of Arts and Sciences
  • John Weidner, chair, Department of Chemical Engineering
  • Sarah Wilcox, professor, Arnold School of Public Health

Our committee has an incredible opportunity to identify ideas that are truly transformative, and that have the potential to provide a sustainable and lasting impact on the university.

Stephen Cutler, committee co-chair and dean, USC College of Pharmacy

 

The Excellence Initiative committee’s charter states its goal is to reinforce USC’s “academic and research mission to spur discovery and innovation, deepen existing areas of excellence, and reward preeminent levels of productivity.”

“Our committee has an incredible opportunity to identify ideas that are truly transformative, and that have the potential to provide a sustainable and lasting impact on the university,” Cutler says.

Project proposals can be submitted by any faculty or staff member, and the committee is currently working to establish criteria by which proposals are evaluated. It will issue a formal call for proposals later this fall.

“I came to the University of South Carolina because I wanted to be associated with a high-end institution. As a Carnegie top-tier research university, we’re already doing exceptional work and, through the Excellence Initiative, we can elevate the quality of research, teaching and learning to a level that we’ve never seen before,” Cutler says.

For more information about the Excellence Initiative, please contact Dean Stephen Cutler at 803-777-4151 or email sjcutler@cop.sc.edu.


Share this Story! Let friends in your social network know what you are reading about