USC President to Retire Next August
CNS--The president of USC officially announced today he will retire next August after nearly 19 years at the helm of the university.
Steven B. Sample, who is credited for enhancing the school's academic reputation and increasing fundraising, will step down Aug. 2, 2010, USC officials announced.
"Dr. Sample has engineered the most dramatic rise in quality and ranking of any American university. From the very start he understood the entrepreneurial zeal of USC and fueled our desire to be excellent," said USC Board of Trustees Chairman Edward Roski Jr.
"Again and again he would achieve his objectives for the university but would then push even harder, urging everyone to reach for even higher goals. If there were a tag line for his leadership style, it would be 'Never let up.' And the results have been nothing short of spectacular," said Roski.
Sample became the 10th president of USC in March 1991, after serving as president of the University at Buffalo of the The State University of New York.
Sample, who will become 69 later this month, told The Los Angeles Times he is leaving in August to give trustees time to choose a new president.
"It's a time for fresh leadership," he told the newspaper. "I don't mean to sound self-congratulatory, but we've had a good run. And so, why not quit while you're ahead?"
Sample is an electrical engineer. Eight years ago he was diagnosed with Parkinson's disease, but he said that was not a major factor in his decision to step down.
Since 1991, USC has gone up from 51st to 26th in U.S. News & World Report's rankings of U.S. research universities, the number of freshman applicants has more than tripled, and the average SAT score of incoming freshmen has gone up 28 percent, to 2,068 this year out of a possible 2,400, according to The Times.
USC's endowment also went up from $450 million to nearly $4 billion before falling to $3 billion during the economic recession.