The gates at the south side of the historic Horseshoe

Board of Trustees meets, names new chancellor for USC Upstate

The University of South Carolina’s Board of Trustees and several committees met on Friday (March 12). Here’s a roundup of actions they took.

New USC Upstate Chancellor named

Following a national search, the board approved the appointment of Bennie L. Harris as the new chancellor of the University of South Carolina Upstate. Harris currently serves as senior vice president for Institutional Advancement at the Morehouse School of Medicine (MSM) in Atlanta, Georgia, a position he’s held since 2014. Prior to that, he was vice president for Development and Alumni Relations at Lipscomb University in Nashville, Tennessee. Harris will begin on July 1, 2021.

Health sciences campus planning continues

In February 2020, the Buildings and Grounds Committee presented a funding plan for two buildings at the health sciences campus tentatively planned to be located at the BullStreet district. At today’s meeting, the Finance and Infrastructure approved phase one of the plan, which includes $4.2 million for services including architectural and engineering design, geotechnical testing and surveying and legal costs. The process will begin with an RFP/RFQ process with the goal of selecting the service team in the next calendar year, and construction is slated to begin in 2024.

Facilities projects, other requests approved

The Finance and Infrastructure also gave approval for several maintenance projects on the Columbia campus. Wardlaw College will receive windows to replace those that were installed in the 1970s, which currently leak. The West Energy Plant, which supports buildings including the Thomas Cooper Library, will receive a chiller to replace the 40-year-old unit. The Colonial Life Arena will receive a replacement roof in order to address leak intrusions and thermal efficiency.

The committee also approved 19 other facilities projects:

  • Earth & Water Sciences building roof replacement
  • Longstreet Annex roof replacement
  • McCutchen House/Lieber College envelope renovations
  • Sprinkler installation
  • Humanities Classroom building HVAC renovation
  • Facilities Management building HVAC/electrical system replacement
  • Campus EMS
  • Energy plant repairs and modifications
  • Central steam/condensate repairs
  • Electrical infrastructure repair and replacement
  • ADA restroom compliance
  • Humanities classroom building interior renovations
  • Close-Hipp restroom renovations for HRSM
  • Baruch researcher's duplex residence construction
  • USC Aiken Pacer Downs fire alarm replacement
  • USC Aiken Penland building roof replacement
  • USC Sumter lab building renovation
  • USC Upstate 151 Smith Circle acquisition
  • USC Upstate 8000 Valley Falls Road acquisition

The Finance and Infrastructure Committee also accepted a gift naming agreement for the Kevin O’Connell bench, and approved a fee request for the Darla Moore School of Business’s new MS in Business Analytics.

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