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USciences Restructures Graduate Programs and Research Infrastructure
Posted: Friday, May 09, 2014
Contact:  Brian Kirschner
Contact Email:  b.kirschner@usciences.edu
Contact Phone:  215-895-1186
Following the board of trustees meeting on May 8, 2014, USciences provost Dr. Heidi M. Anderson announced that the board had approved disbanding the University's College of Graduate Studies (COGS) in favor of a new structure that aligned the graduate programs with the remaining colleges and simplified the research structure. The move was intended to be more efficient and add a better alignment to the existing structure. COGS was created in 1997 from the exisiting graduate school when the institution became a university.

Dear Colleagues and Students:

As graduate programs and research efforts at USciences have undergone tremendous growth over the last 15 years, the time had come to examine other models and structures that may be more appropriate for USciences.

In September 2013, I convened an advisory group consisting of constituents from across campus as well as a smaller working group comprised of some department chairs, directors, and faculty to provide guidance to me. An exhaustive review was conducted that included an analysis of two internal recommendations from the department chair advisory group and graduate faculty group, input from external academic consultants, and a review of all pertinent data on hand.

The resulting analysis led to my recommendation to the president that USciences discontinues the College of Graduate Studies (COGS) and assigns responsibility for oversight of graduate degree programs to college deans in collaboration with the Office of the Provost. The research infrastructure will also be streamlined. This new structure was approved by the cabinet and the president prior to being presented to the board of trustees. I formally presented these recommendations to the board of trustees at their May meeting which concluded on May 8, 2014. The board of trustees approved the recommendations and urged that these changes become effective July 1, 2014.

As part of the new structure, two new positions that replace the former leadership will be created:

•   an associate provost for university research and graduate education who will be the chief research officer of the University and provide leadership in the development, maintenance, and growth of the University’s research and graduate program infrastructure and capacity.
•   a director of graduate support services who will work with the associate provost for university research and graduate education as well as the deans and faculty to coordinate all graduate programs to assure the timely recruitment, retention, and graduation of qualified students.

Based on the board approval, I am immediately initiating a search for any internal candidates interested and qualified to fill the new positions.

Through our due diligence, we strongly believe that this new structure will be more efficient, align us with many institutions that already use this structure, and help to eliminate areas of duplications while at the same time strengthening our University. The individuals who fill these positions will work with all the stakeholders to assess the quality of our graduate programs. In addition, as we move forward, we will continue to build the areas of graduate programs and research infrastructure to meet our needs.

I am excited about these changes and feel the University, along with our students and faculty, will be best served by them.


Heidi Milia Anderson, Ph.D., FAPhA
Provost and Vice President for Academic Affairs
University of the Sciences
Office of the Provost

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