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Tanner to step down as director

Posted November 29, 2018
By Rebekah Friedman, communications manager

From creating new classes to increasing faculty research, Dr. Andrea Tanner’s indomitable work ethic has made a mark on the School of Journalism and Mass Communications during her tenure as director. Now, that tenure has come to a close — Tanner has announced she will join the South Carolina Honors College as associate dean.

After 18 years with the J-school, moving was not an easy decision to make.

“Although this is an exciting new career challenge for me, it is also a difficult move because of the personal and professional relationships I have with so many people here,” Tanner said.  “I am passionate about the school and the opportunities we offer our students. It has been an honor to work with our incredibly talented faculty, staff and alumni through a remarkable time of change in our school’s history.”

A former television reporter, anchor and producer, Tanner received her undergraduate degree from the University of Georgia and her master’s and Ph.D. from the University of South Carolina. She joined the SJMC faculty in 2000 and was named the school’s director in 2015.

One of her most significant accomplishments as director was facilitating the school’s move from the basement of the Carolina Coliseum into a state-of-the-art building at the foot of the historic Horseshoe. Other highlights include hiring more than 25 new faculty and staff, developing innovative new courses and programs, managing a surge in undergraduate enrollment and significantly increasing the school’s research productivity. 

“There’s no question that Dr. Tanner has played a pivotal role in advancing our program’s reputation and visibility,” said Dr. Tom Reichert, dean of the College of Information and Communications. “We’re immensely grateful for her leadership here at the SJMC, and — while we’re sad to lose her  we look forward to seeing her hard work continue with the Honors College.”

Tanner’s last day with the school is Dec. 7. Dr. Erik Collins, SJMC professor emeritus, has been named interim director as the school initiates a nationwide search for a new director.

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