University of Southern California

Office of the President

C. L. Max Nikias

Topic: News

Viterbis honored at 10th anniversary of naming gift

Topics: News, Uncategorized

C. L. Max Nikias, Niki C. Nikias, Erna Viterbi, Andrew Viterbi

C. L. Max Nikias, Niki C. Nikias, Erna Viterbi, Andrew Viterbi

The USC Viterbi School of Engineering community celebrated the 10 year anniversary of the school’s naming gift, $52 million generously bestowed by Andrew and Erna Viterbi. The 2004 gift was a milestone for the university under the dean of that time, C. L. Max Nikias, now president of USC.

Communications pioneer and USC Trustee Andrew J. Viterbi — who in 1962 earned one of the first doctorates in electrical engineering granted at the University of Southern California — is widely recognized as the engineer whose work enabled the development of CDMA mobile phones, wi-fi, and host of other current technologies.

The son of Jewish Italian immigrants, Andrew Viterbi was born in the small town of Bergamo in northern Italy, and went on to earn undergraduate and master’s degrees in electrical engineering from MIT. He co-founded LINKABIT Corporation in 1968 and technology giant Qualcomm in 1985. One of his most highly influential works is the development of the Viterbi algorithm, a mathematical means of distinguishing critical information from background noise. Viterbi was recognized with the National Medal of Science, our nation’s highest honor for science and technology, as a 2007 honoree.

Andrew Viterbi’s numerous contributions to the field of engineering are widely used in today’s wireless devices and satellite broadcast receivers; they are also used in magnetic recording, speech recognition, DNA sequence analysis, and a diverse array of other applications.

Earlier in 2014, Andrew and Erna Viterbi renewed their commitment the USC with a new gift of $15 million to the university; designating $10 million for  the USC Viterbi School of Engineering and $5 million to USC Shoah Foundation – The Institute for Visual History and Education, which also celebrated an anniversary, the 20th year of its founding.

President Nikias honored at LAPD Museum Gala

Topics: News, Uncategorized

On September 20,  2014, USC President C. L. Max Nikias was honored as the recipient of the Los Angeles Police Museum’s 21st Annual Jack Webb Awards. The award is presented annually to individuals who make positive contributions to their communities by partnering with law enforcement.

LAPD Chief Charlie Beck presented the Award to President Nikias in recognition of his and USC’s longstanding work and close cooperation.

Beck said, “President Nikias has been an extraordinary partner and exceptional friend, not only to me, but to the men and women who proudly serve the City of Los Angeles. He exemplifies the values and traditions of the Los Angeles Police Department and is deserving of the Jack Webb Award for his significant commitment to the LAPD and life-long support of the entire law enforcement community.”

Building a new future for business education

Topics: News

Fertitta Hall groundbreaking

Left to right: James G. Ellis Dean, USC Marshall School of Business; Jill Fertitta; Frank Fertitta; and USC President C. L. Max Nikias during the Jill and Frank Fertitta Hall Groundbreaking Celebration. (USC Photo / Gus Ruelas)

The University of Southern California made a first step toward a new building for undergraduate business education as USC President C. L. Max Nikias, Dean James Ellis, and Jill and Frank Fertitta broke ground for the new Jill and Frank Fertitta Hall on September 19, 2014. Generously supported by Jill and Frank Fertitta (Frank Fertitta is a 1984 graduate of the USC Marshall School of Business), Fertitta Hall will transform the educational environment at USC Marshall, facilitating more collaborative and technology-enabled learning experiences with state-of-the-art classrooms and expanded student areas. Standing in a prominent location on the southeast corner of the University Park Campus at the intersection of Figueroa Street and Exposition Drive, within view of the university’s main entrance, the new building will increase USC Marshall’s undergraduate student capacity by close to one-third.

“Thanks to the Fertittas’ inspired generosity, USC’s students will develop the skills they need to thrive in our globally interconnected world,” said USC President C. L. Max Nikias. “As the nature of business continues to evolve, Fertitta Hall will ensure that our students receive a world-class education in a world-class facility.”

Read the full article about the Fertittas’ philanthropy at USC News.

Chan family makes milestone gift

Topics: News

Chan Gift Announcement

(left to right) USC President C.L. Max Nikias, Barbara Chan, Mrs. T.H. Chan, University Trustee Ronnie Chan, Adley Chan and Adriel Chan watch as the new building name is unveiled during the Celebration of the Naming of Mrs.T.H. Chan Division of Occupational Science and Occupational Therapy on the USC Health Science Campus, Wednesday, September 17, 2014, in Los Angeles, California (USC Photo/ Gus Ruelas)

USC Trustee Ronnie C. Chan MBA ’76 and his wife, Barbara, have dedicated $20 million to USC’s pioneering occupational science and occupational therapy program.

Given in honor of Chan’s mother, the gift endows and names the division, which will be known as the USC Mrs. T.H. Chan Division of Occupational Science and Occupational Therapy. This is the first naming gift and the largest ever made to any occupational therapy program in the history of the field, according to the American Occupational Therapy Association.

The gift also greatly extends the division’s international reach, as it creates the USC Mrs. T.H. Chan Occupational Therapy China Initiative, which will establish a partnership with a top Chinese university to develop a graduate program in occupational therapy in China. In addition, the gift endows the Mrs. T.H. Chan Professorship in Occupational Science and Occupational Therapy. Florence Clark, associate dean of the division, will be installed as the first holder of the professorship.

Read more at USC News.

Good Neighbors Campaign — a tradition of giving

Topics: News

Good Neighbors Campaign Dinner

Good Neighbors Campaign 1% Dinner, September 15, 2014. (USC Photo/Steve Cohn)

USC President C. L. Max Nikias and Mrs. Niki C. Nikias hosted the most generous employee donors to the USC Good Neighbors Campaign – the President’s Leadership Circle – at a dinner at the USC President’s House in San Marino on Sept. 14.

This year marks the 20th anniversary of the USC Good Neighbors Campaign, a unique employee giving program that supports community-based partnership activities throughout the neighborhoods surrounding the University Park and Health Sciences campuses.

The Leadership Circle is composed of top employee contributors, all of whom have donated 1 percent or more of their annual salary to the campaign. For the 2013-2014 Good Neighbors Campaign year, more than 500 employees in this giving circle contributed a total of $700,000 toward the final tally of $1.7 million.

Over the years, the campaign has raised more than $17.7 million dollars – with 100 percent of proceeds directly funding nearly 550 community partnerships, including the Neighborhood Academic Initiative, JazzReach and FitFamilies.

USC Village – For Students and Neighbors

Topics: News, Uncategorized

(left to right) Community representative Maria Guadalupe Garrido, graduate student government President Yohey Tokumitsu, Vice Provost, Student Affairs Ainsley Carry, USC Trustee Kathleen McCarthy, USC President C.L. Max Nikias, Los Angeles County Supervisor Mark Ridley-Tomas, Los Angeles City Councilman Curren Price and undergraduate student government President Andrew Menard during the USC Village Groundbreaking Celebration. (USC Photo/ Gus Ruelas)

(left to right) Community representative Maria Guadalupe Garrido, graduate student government President Yohey Tokumitsu, Vice Provost, Student Affairs Ainsley Carry, USC Trustee Kathleen McCarthy, USC President C.L. Max Nikias, Los Angeles County Supervisor Mark Ridley-Tomas, Los Angeles City Councilman Curren Price and undergraduate student government President Andrew Menard during the USC Village Groundbreaking Celebration. (USC Photo/ Gus Ruelas)

Hundreds of supporters, civic leaders, and USC leadership arrived for the historic groundbreaking of the USC Village—a new student housing, retail, and dining center adjacent to the USC campus. In attendance were Los Angeles City Council President Herb Wesson, Councilmember Curren Price, former Los Angeles City Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa, Councilmember Mitch Englander, Los Angeles County Supervisor Mark Ridley-Thomas, Assemblymember Reggie Jones-Sawyer, Assemblymember Sebastian Ridley-Thomas and Compton Mayor Aja Brown.

The biggest development in the history of USC at $650 million, the project also will be one of the largest in the history of South Los Angeles, providing thousands of jobs and pumping billions of dollars into the local economy.

Phase one of this development project involves 1.25 million square feet of land that includes greenspace space, retail space, communal space and residential housing, all within a masterpiece of collegiate Gothic architecture redefined for the 21st century.

A special guest at the event was USC Trustee Kathleen Leavey McCarthy, who, with the Leavey Foundation donated $30 million to create the Thomas and Dorothy Leavey Foundation Honors Hall at the new USC Village.

Read more at USC News.

Dr. Verna and Peter Dauterive Hall opens with USC Fanfare

Topics: News, Uncategorized

confetti cannons pop streamers over the crowd at the opening of Dauterive Hall.

The opening of Dr. Verna and Peter Dauterive Hall, a historic day for the University of Southern California, September 3, 2014. (USC Photo / Gus Ruelas)

The newest addition to the USC University Park Campus, Dr. Verna and Peter Dauterive Hall, officially opened on September 3, 2014 with hundreds of well-wishers and dignitaries in attendance. The six-level, 110,000-square-foot building is the first interdisciplinary social science building, and represents the future of research collaboration, as well as a key milestone in the $6 billion Campaign for USC. The new building, made possible by a $30 million gift from educator, alumna, and USC Trustee Verna B. Dauterive MEd ’49, EdD ’66, will function as a catalyst for creativity and a gateway to discovery—bringing together researchers from many disciplines in a shared environment.

C. L. Max Nikias accompanies USC Trustee Verna Dauterive

USC President C. L. Max Nikias accompanies USC Trustee Verna Dauterive to the official opening of Dauterive Hall. (USC Photo / Gus Ruelas)

Dr. Dauterive’s gift – a pledge announced in 2008 to honor her late husband, Peter W. Dauterive ’49, founding president and CEO of Founders Savings and Loan Association, as well as the university – was groundbreaking not only for its extraordinary generosity, but also for being the largest ever made by an African American to a U.S. institution of higher education. The Dauterives, who met in Doheny Memorial Library while both were students, maintained strong, lifelong ties to their alma mater, providing previous support to the USC Marshall School of Business, USC Libraries, USC Norris Comprehensive Cancer Center, USC Price School of Public Policy, USC Rossier School of Education and USC School of Dramatic Arts.

Read more at USC News.

Legacy of Judge Widney Immortalized on Campus

Topics: News

Pauly Brothers, C. L. Max Nikias

Gregory B. Pauly and Bruce Pauly, right, present Widney family heirlooms including the hat and cape of Joseph Widney (the second president of USC) during the Judge Widney Statue Dedication, Friday, August 29, 2014, in Los Angeles, California. (USC Photo/Gus Ruelas)

The legacy of USC founder Judge Robert Maclay Widney was celebrated at the unveiling of an 8-foot bronze sculpture newly installed at the entrance of the Judge Widney Alumni House, during ceremonies held on the USC campus on August 29th, 2014.

The 1,000 lb. art piece was created by renowned California-born artist Christopher Slatoff, and the ceremony was attended by USC Trustees, senior leadership, and members of the USC community as the Trojan Marching Band led the crowd in a spirited display of cheering and music. Special honored guests at the event were the living descendants of Judge Widney, who presented USC President C. L. Max Nikias with two family artifacts: a top hat and cape owned and worn by Joseph Widney, Judge Widney’s brother and the second president of USC. The pieces have been donated to the University and will be preserved in USC’s permanent archive.

Welcome, Class of 2018!

Topics: News

USC President C.L. Max Nikias, center, and wife Niki C. Nikias, left center, take selfies with students as students move into residential housing during Welcome Week at USC, Wednesday, August 20, 2014, in Los Angeles, California.(USC Photo/ Gus Ruelas)

USC President C.L. Max Nikias, center, and wife Niki C. Nikias, left center, take selfies with students as students move into residential housing during Welcome Week at USC, Wednesday, August 20, 2014, in Los Angeles, California.(USC Photo/ Gus Ruelas)

As the new freshman class arrived on campus with families and belongings in tow, USC President C. L. Max Nikias, Mrs. Niki C. Nikias, and USC Board of Trustees chair John Mork (left center, second row) greeted the incoming Trojans in front of Birnkrant Residence Hall.

“USC is a place today where 53,000 applicants competed for 2,700 spots in the freshman class,” President Nikias told the sea of enthusiastic faces during convocation ceremony, part of the week-long program of activities known as Welcome Week. “We searched far and wide to find you. … So if you feel very special to be here today, I’ve got news for you — it’s because you are!”

Nikias challenged the incoming class to redefine literacy as a fluency of the powers of imagination, the arts and literature, world cultures, digital media and most importantly, of ethics. The president concluded his uplifting speech with instructions on “a simple gesture” that all Trojans know.

“No matter where you are in the world,” he said, “whether you are walking along the streets of Los Angeles or in the heart of New York City or Mumbai or London or Shanghai or the island of Santorini, if you recognize another Trojan, you flash the victory sign and say: ‘Fight on!’”

 

President Nikias voted Chairman of Association of Pacific Rim Universities

Topics: News

Nikias visits APRU Secretariat

USC President C. L. Max Nikias (third from left) visited with APRU secretary general Christopher Tremewan (third from right) in the Singapore office of the APRU Secretariat.

President C. L. Max Nikias was elected as the chairman of APRU (Association of Pacific Rim Universities) for a two-year term. APRU is a network of 45 premier research universities from 16 Pacific Rim economies. President Nikias served as the vice chairman of APRU prior to his current election as chairman, and had the opportunity to visit with APRU secretary general Christopher Tremewan during a USC delegation visit to Singapore in February of 2014.

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.