Dean Search for the USC School of Dramatic Arts – Next Steps


To: USC School of Dramatic Arts Community

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

Date: February 10, 2021

Subject: Dean Search for the USC School of Dramatic Arts – Next Steps

I am pleased to share with you that the search for the next dean of the USC School of Dramatic Arts is now entering its final stages. Over the last several months, the Search Advisory Committee has conducted an exhaustive and thorough search.

Our search consultants at ILM Partners sent announcements to over 400 academic and theatre leaders, placed postings on prominent online sites, and reached out to over 100 prospective candidates and sources. The search committee reviewed a rich and diverse pool of nominees and applicants that included professors, artistic directors, theater executives, and working professionals in the field nationwide. I am grateful to the members of the Search Advisory Committee for their engagement, energy, and excellent advice and guidance through this process.

The committee has identified the finalists who will virtually visit USC for two days in the coming weeks. During these two-day visits, faculty, staff, and students will have an opportunity to meet the candidates in open forums. The candidates will also meet with the Search Advisory Committee, SDA administrative leadership, USC senior administrators, deans of other schools, the SDA Board of Councilors, and myself.

Please hold the following forum dates and times on your calendar; the name of each finalist will be made public shortly before their visit.

Candidate #1

Faculty Forum

Thursday, February 18, 9:30-10:45am

Staff Forum

Thursday, February 18, 1:00-2:15pm

Student Forum

Wednesday, February 17, 10:30-11:45am

Candidate #2

Faculty Forum

Monday, February 22, 11:00am-12:15pm

Staff Forum

Tuesday, February 23, 2:00-3:15pm

Student Forum

onday, February 22, 1:00-2:15pm

Candidate #3

Faculty Forum

Friday, February 26, 9:30-10:45am

Staff Forum

Wednesday, February 24, 2:00-3:15pm

Student Forum

Wednesday, February 24, 3:30-4:45pm

Candidate #4

Faculty Forum

Monday, March 1, 11:00am-12:15pm

Staff Forum

Monday, March 1, 3:00-4:15pm

Student Forum

Tuesday, March 2, 9:30-10:45am

These visits are important both to us, as a university, and to the individual candidates. We learn about and appraise each of them while they also evaluate and learn more about us. This is an opportunity to fully present to the candidates the strengths and opportunities of our university and to being a dean here.

All who meet the candidates are encouraged to submit comments in confidence directly to me regarding the strengths and potential challenges of each candidate; your individual evaluations are very important to President Folt and to me. I would like to remind you that our process prohibits any group or constituency from taking any vote or lobbying in any organized manner for any candidate during this process. You may email your comments to me at I assure you all information will be kept completely confidential. I will ultimately share the feedback I receive with President Folt who make the final selection of the dean.

The dean of the USC School of Dramatic Arts plays a vital role in the life of the entire university. Recruiting and hiring an outstanding dean is one of the university’s highest priorities. Therefore, I urge each of you to participate in the forums for these candidates and to share your comments with me.

cc:Office of the President
Academic Deans
President’s Senior Leadership Team
Provost’s Leadership Team
Academic Senate
Staff Assembly
GSG President
USG President