University of Southern California

Office of the President

C. L. Max Nikias

USC’s 11th president, C. L. Max Nikias is an accomplished scholar and innovator whose 21 years at USC have been characterized by vision and a talent for seeing and seizing opportunities. From his creation of a multimedia research center and his energetic tenure as dean of engineering, to the pacesetting initiatives he set in motion as USC’s provost, he has helped propel USC toward its goal of becoming one of the most productive and influential research universities in the world.
Read more about President Nikias

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Mrs. Niki C. Nikias, center, accompanied by USC Alumni Association President Ramona Capello, center left.
USC Trustee Edward P. Roski, Jr.; Gayle Garner Roski; Julie Mork; USC Trustee John Mork (chairman); Niki C. Nikias; USC President C. L. Max Nikias.
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From the Office of the President

USC summit marks rebirth of biotech era in Los Angeles

Topics: News

(left to right) USC Trustee Frank Cruz, Los Angeles County Supervisor Hilda L. Solis and USC President C. L. Max Nikias during the Los Angeles Biotech Summit at the University of Southern California Health Sciences Campus, Thursday, February 25, 2015. USC Photos/Gus Ruelas

(left to right) USC Trustee Frank Cruz, Los Angeles County Supervisor Hilda L. Solis and USC President C. L. Max Nikias during the Los Angeles Biotech Summit at the University of Southern California Health Sciences Campus, Thursday, February 25, 2015. USC Photos/Gus Ruelas

Los Angeles city and county policymakers and educational institutions are laying the groundwork for the region’s biotechnology strategy at a summit today on the USC Health Sciences Campus.

The Los Angeles Biotech Summit draws leaders from business, academia and government to discuss ways to build the industry and, in turn, create more jobs.

Participants include Los Angeles County supervisors Hilda Solis and Mark Ridley-Thomas; Nelson Rising of Rising Realty Partners; Bill Allen of the Los Angeles Economic Development Council; Steve Kay, biochemist and dean of the USC Dornsife College of Letters, Arts and Sciences; David Meyer of the Los Angeles BioMedical Research Institute at Harbor-UCLA Medical Center; Marvin Martinez, president of East Los Angeles College; and Elmy Bermejo, regional representative for U.S. Secretary of Labor Thomas E. Perez.

“Today, we gather at a most auspicious moment in the history of medicine and the biological sciences. Each day brings advances that not only improve how long we live, but how well we live. Now, we have an opportunity to usher in progress and economic development, here in the heart of our city,” said USC President C. L. Max Nikias.

“What Silicon Valley brought to computer technology, Los Angeles can bring to biotechnology: a thriving environment of innovations encompassing academic institutions, training centers, companies, and communities throughout the county.”

Read the complete article at USC News, and The Los Angeles Times Op-Ed by President Nikias.

Nikias comes to defense of the research university

Topics: News

USC President C.L. Max Nikias delivers his address to the staff Feb. 19 at Bovard Auditorium. He also spoke to faculty Feb. 10 at the Health Sciences Campus and Feb. 11 at Town & Gown on the University Park Campus. (USC Photo/Gus Ruelas)

USC President C.L. Max Nikias delivers his address to the staff Feb. 19 at Bovard Auditorium. He also spoke to faculty Feb. 10 at the Health Sciences Campus and Feb. 11 at Town & Gown on the University Park Campus. (USC Photo/Gus Ruelas)

In his 2015 addresses to faculty and staff, USC President C. L. Max Nikias delivered a full-throated defense of the research university.

Speaking Feb. 11 to faculty at Town & Gown, he responded to a recent wave of criticism in the media over ballooning tuition, crushing student debt and uncertainty about the market value of a college education.

Nikias acknowledged that these are legitimate concerns.

“We owe it to ourselves and to our nation to examine ourselves honestly,” he said, setting himself the goal of being “as complete and objective as possible.”

Read the full article on USC News.

Nikias and Solis discuss biotech

Topics: News

County Supervisor Hilda Solis and USC President C. L. Max Nikias at the Kenneth Hahn Hall of Administration

County Supervisor Hilda Solis and USC President C. L. Max Nikias at the Kenneth Hahn Hall of Administration

USC President C. L. Max Nikias met with Los Angeles County Supervisor Hilda Solis ’81 to discuss how to bring more economic development to the First District, which encompasses the university’s Health Sciences Campus.

Jobs are an area of expertise for Solis, who until 2013 was President Barack Obama’s Secretary of Labor. Solis is also part of the Trojan Family, having earned a master of public administration degree at USC.

In advance of a Biotech Summit to be hosted by USC on Feb. 26, the president and the supervisor shared their visions for a biotech corridor that would stretch from HSC on the west to California State University, Los Angeles, on the east and beyond.

Read the full article on USC News

Presidential priorities

  • Transforming USC into a major hub of the emerging Age of the Pacific—by creating trans-Pacific alliances, by fully utilizing Los Angeles as a laboratory for trans-Pacific research, education and culture, and by building the foremost network of Pacific leaders.

  • Ensuring that the USC academic community serves as a key engine of intellectual, economic and cultural progress for the nation, and allowing its vast array of disciplines to be combined creatively in order to catalyze new knowledge and innovation.

  • Ensuring that USC promotes imagination and invention by creating a living and learning environment in which the university’s undergraduates, graduate students, and faculty are fluent in a wide variety of intellectual areas, ranging from classical literary works to the latest digital technologies.

  • Serving the neighborhoods around our two campuses through job creation and quality k-12 education. Further strengthening the legendary traditions of the Trojan Family.

  • Leading USC during the most ambitious fundraising campaign ever announced by an American university. This historic endeavor will raise $6 billion to support USC's faculty and students, as well as its academic priorities, capital projects, and essential infrastructure.