UB Provost Charles Zukoski leaving Oct. 1

Zukoski leaving UB for the University of Southern California

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Charles Zukoski, UB’s provost and executive vice president of Academic Affairs of seven years, will leave UB on Oct. 1, President Satish Tripathi announced on Tuesday.

The University of Southern California’s Board of Trustees appointed Zukoski as its next provost and senior vice president for Academic Affairs on Tuesday. During his time at UB, Zukoski “improved the university’s four and six-year retention rates, established the position of vice provost to promote equity and inclusion and helped to enrich the university’s undergraduate curriculum,” according to UB’s press release. UB will announce plans for the interim leadership of Zukoski’s positions in the coming days.

 UB appointed Zukoski as the provost and vice president of Academic Affairs in April 2012, after a seven-month international search. He came to UB from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. Tripathi said Zukoski’s international experience in Singapore was important in the selection process.   

Zukoski’s tenure at UB was, at times, met with controversy, as students, faculty and staff voiced concerns with graduate stipends through sit-ins, rallies and protests on campus. The provost’s departure announcement shortly follows UB’s decision to increase baseline stipends to $20,000 for the 2019-20 academic year.

At USC, Zukoski hopes to impact the school’s neighboring community in South L.A., as he told the school’s student newspaper, the Daily Trojan.

“[We want] to begin to address the large problems the neighborhoods face from health disparities to sustainability and water to access to food and housing,” Zukoski said to the Daily Trojan. “How can USC, with its research and scholarship capacity, have an enhanced impact there?”

Tripathi, in an email to faculty, thanked the administrator for his time at UB.

“A talented higher education leader and an internationally renowned scholar, [Zukoski] has provided astute leadership that has both contributed to UB’s rise in the ranks of national public research universities and helped position us exceedingly well to make an even greater impact on the many communities we serve,” Tripathi wrote.

 Brittany Gorny is the senior news editor and can be reached at brittany.gorny@ubspectrum.com and on Twitter @BrittanyUBSpec.