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Longtime USC administrator named USC Upstate interim chancellor

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University of South Carolina Vice President for System Planning Mary Anne Fitzpatrick has been named interim chancellor of USC Upstate. The university’s national search for a chancellor attracted “many qualified applicants and several strong finalists but did not yield the leader sought,” a university statement said.

Fitzpatrick succeeds Tom Moore, who is retiring. Moore started as chancellor in August 2011 and earlier this year announced plans for USC Upstate to start offering undergraduate courses, focusing initially on an urban and regional studies program, in downtown Greenville. The USC Upstate faculty in April 2015 gave a vote of no confidence in Moore, citing communication shortcomings among other complaints.

Mary Anne Fitzpatrick takes over leadership of USC Upstate. University President Harris Pastides said in the statement announcing Fitzpatrick’s temporary appointment that he expects to have a new chancellor by the first of the year. He described Fitzpatrick as the “perfect choice to lead USC Upstate during the transition,” the statement said. Her appointment starts Aug. 1.

“I am honored to serve as the interim chancellor at USC Upstate,” Fitzpatrick said in the statement. “It is evident to me that the community leaders and the alumni are very supportive of the institution and its mission. Moreover, the faculty and staff and students want to continue to move the institution forward.”

Pastides said Fitzpatrick “will not simply be a caretaker but will build upon USC Upstate’s momentum, advance the forward progress and ensure a strong foundation for a permanent chancellor.” He said her “familiarity with the system and the USC Upstate campus, as well as her skills as gifted administrator and higher education leader, will prove invaluable during this time.”

Fitzpatrick, an Educational Foundation distinguished professor of psychology, has served as vice president of system planning for almost a year. She has been responsible for ensuring the improvement of quality, coordination and effectiveness and long-range planning for the statewide system, which has nearly 50,000 students across eight campuses, the statement said.

Fitzpatrick previously served as dean of the university’s College of Arts and Sciences, directing the recruitment of 300 new tenure-track faculty and overseeing efforts to open new centers, institutes and programs and a new School of Earth, Ocean and Environment.

As an associate vice president and vice provost, she led the university’s On Your Time initiative, which changed the academic calendar to include a third semester option during the summer.

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