USC Glorya Kaufman School of Dance Dean Search

From the Office of the Provost

Message to USC Glorya Kaufman School of Dance Faculty, Staff and Students

From: Charles F. Zukoski, Provost and Senior Vice President for Academic Affairs

Dean Rob Cutietta has shared his decision with me to step down as dean of the USC Glorya Kaufman School of Dance at the end of the academic year, effective June 30, 2022. I am grateful that he will remain this year to continue to lead USC Kaufman, as he has since the school opened in 2015. He also will step down as dean of the USC Thornton School of Music, which he has led for the past 19 years.

Dean Cutietta is a creative and inspiring leader who oversaw the development and opening of the outstanding Glorya Kaufman School of Dance and Glorya Kaufman International Dance Center. Indeed, his vision and influence made Trojan history: Kaufman became the first new school in 41 years and became the sixth arts school at USC.

Dean Cutietta played an integral role in securing the transformational gift from founder Glorya Kaufman that established the school and the dance center. He worked collaboratively with the high-quality, professional faculty and staff to build the innovative program that now offers the professional degree in dance (BFA), four dance minors, a joint degree in Musical Theater with the School of Dramatic Arts and the Thornton School of Music, and non-major courses that serve thousands of USC students each year.

USC Kaufman alumni have gone on to careers on Broadway and in leading dance companies around the world. The school’s alumni are also pursuing careers in arts administration, marketing and business.

Dean Cutietta has advanced support for artistic collaboration and student travel, both of which significantly enhance the student experience. As a respected authority in the field of arts education, he established the Claude and Alfred Mann Endowed Professorship which is now held by MacArthur Fellow and award-winning choreographer Kyle Abraham.

While we will continue to celebrate Dean Cutietta’s many accomplishments in the months ahead, we will begin the process of assembling the search committee that will identify and recruit the next dean of USC Kaufman. Dean Cutietta will return to the Thornton faculty after a sabbatical.

I seek your nominations of Kaufman faculty and staff who should serve on this committee.

The search committee will be co-chaired by Pedro Noguera, Dean of the USC Rossier School of Education, and Elizabeth Graddy, Executive Vice Provost. I thank them in advance for their service.  I look forward to your committee recommendations. Please send them to by Thursday, August 26, 2021.

President Carol Folt joins me in expressing her gratitude to Dean Cutietta. We wish him continued success this year.

cc: Pedro Noguera
Elizabeth Graddy

About the USC Glorya Kaufman School of Dance

Founded in 2012 by a transformational gift from visionary founder Glorya Kaufman, the University of Southern California created its sixth art school and, at that time, its first new school in nearly 40 years. The USC Glorya Kaufman School of Dance expands upon USC’s unique signature as a world-class research institution with a deep commitment to the arts. With its enterprising vision for arts education, USC Kaufman is at the forefront of developing dancers, choreographers and dance leaders for the future.

The exciting opportunity to create a new school brought the chance to rethink the professional degree for the 21st century and the role of a dance school within the greater national ecology. To fulfill this monumental intention, USC Kaufman envisioned a new model of dance education, called “The New Movement” – a hybrid and collaborative approach expressed in studio practice, music, choreography, performance, new media and scholarship, where artistic preeminence is combined with thoughtful industry access.

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