The University’s singular focus must continue to be the students, patients, and community we serve. They are the center of our academic and medical mission, and we owe them our very best. Our shared commitment must be to ensure that all of our students step onto campus feeling energized, motivated, safe, and confident about their USC experience. Our dedicated faculty and staff work constantly and tirelessly towards this goal.
A member of the faculty, addressing the very purpose of a University, remarked that “we are the light of the human mind.” Our light has dimmed recently. By working together, with passion and commitment, we will restore trust and heal our community. It is because of that Trojan passion and commitment that USC will light the human mind more luminously than ever before.
“We are pleased to announce that today the USC Board of Trustees passed a series of significant and historic changes to its governance structure.
As you know well, USC has grown dramatically over the past few decades. That growth includes a larger student body, more faculty, a fast-growing staff, and operating one of the region’s largest medical enterprises in Keck Medicine of USC. However, the Board of Trustees recognized that it has been organized in much the same way as it was thirty years ago. Just as USC has changed, so too must our Board. And, that is what we have done.”
“Last spring, the Association of American Universities (AAU) led this survey of 33 member universities as a follow up to a similar study in 2015. We participated both years because we believe this information will help us identify the work we need to do to provide safe campuses so all members of the USC community can thrive.
A total of nearly 200,000 students from the participating schools filled out the survey this year, providing invaluable data points to help us – and peer universities across the country – benchmark where we are and highlight how much work we have yet to do.
The survey results clearly show the need for ongoing work to strengthen the prevention and intervention efforts already underway, and to provide additional support for those impacted. Over the past years, the university has increased efforts in these areas. We value your input and will continue to work vigilantly to improve the climate on our campuses.”
Beginning October 14, 2019, all students, faculty and staff are encouraged to take a 15-minute poll on cultural values (coming via email from “email@example.com”) about University of Southern California’s current culture, your values, and what we should strive for in the future.
The Culture Journey is USC’s university-wide initiative to co-create USC’s values, align the supportive behaviors that bring those values to life, and create opportunities to improve our systems, processes, and culture. The journey involves expressing ideas from all groups throughout the entire USC community through our “conversations around culture.” It is an important step in moving toward a culture based on shared values, and to rebuild trust across our institution.
“Building the best culture for Trojans begins with understanding the values at the heart of our community. Next week, on October 14, we will launch the USC Values Poll – a fifteen-minute, online poll for all students, staff, and faculty…Culture change is a journey. It is something that we develop together over time through honest, open conversation and the actions each of us take every day.”
Charles Zukowski begins his term as University Provost. As the second-ranking administrator at USC, the provost oversees all academic programs at the university, the 23 professional schools and units and educational policies. He will manage the divisions dedicated to academic and faculty affairs, student affairs, admission and enrollment research, campus well-being, global initiatives, libraries and museums, among others. Zukoski said he is enthusiastic about collaborating with faculty members, school leaders and students to advance the university’s educational, research and community engagement goals.
Chantelle Rice Collins isn’t sure who nominated her to participate in USC’s culture change efforts, but their reasons for doing so become clear once she starts talking about her passion for cultivating individual well-being. “This isn’t fluff,” Rice Collins said. “Creating nurturing environments at USC is for the benefit and the effectiveness of the university. We can start small, but we need to think long term.”