March 23, 2023
Dear USC Community,
The arts at USC are central to our special mission – from performing, literary, and visual arts to design, music, architecture, and cinematic arts, they touch every part of our university. The arts challenge us to see our communities through different lenses, shifting our perspectives in unique ways. On a deep, personal level, they often resonate with us emotionally while they nourish our spirits.
The arts are about connection. At USC, we embrace them at scale across our campuses and across our 22 diverse schools. They’re integral to every program, linking disciplines and helping faculty, staff, and students bridge gaps in truly uncommon ways. Our alumni become leaders who push boundaries in every domain and receive award-winning recognition from their peers. USC is uniquely situated in the creative capital of the world – giving us the opportunity to make meaningful connections with the broader community.
To recognize and elevate the inspiring creative work happening here every day, I am pleased to announce the creation of an important new position – USC’s first Vice Provost for the Arts – who, in collaboration with our arts deans and USC museums, will help us provide even more platforms for our immense talent.
Professor Josh Kun, Chair in Cross-Cultural Communication at USC Annenberg, has agreed to assume this role on September 1, 2023. No one is better suited to shape this important area for us than Josh. He’s well known to many of you as an award-winning cultural historian and impresario, critic, and curator. He’s an engaging teacher whose scholarship – and elan – continue to inspire us. He’s also a 2016 MacArthur Fellow and 2018 Berlin Prize winner, with ideas and vision that are recognized broadly and will serve us well here at USC.
In this new position, Josh will create and support collaborations across the university, elevating the work of our students, faculty, and staff. This key role will serve as a liaison to the broader Los Angeles artistic community – and beyond – helping us develop public/private partnerships that will strengthen our already strong ties. This role will serve as both innovative curator and ultimate connector – ensuring USC’s artistic efforts are supported and our communities fully engaged.
I’m looking forward to working with Josh, our arts deans, and museums to co-create a strong and unique vision for the arts. Josh has the right imagination and skills to expand opportunities for our students and further our exceptional reputation across the arts.
Please join me in congratulating Josh on his new role.
Carol L. Folt