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University History

Commission Reports

In accordance with the charge, the commission has been examining and documenting the historical context of named structures on the Columbia campus as well as exploring options for communicating the university's full history for new USC community members.

The commission will generate reports for the president which will also be made available to the public. The commission will explore options for interactive applications, programming, exhibits, or academic courses to communicate a complete and full history for all new USC community members.


Interim Report

On February 26, 2021, the commission released an interim report. In addition to detailing work to date and work remaining, the report includes relevant background, tasks completed, current members, subcommittee updates and more.


Final Report

The commission is charged to create a written report containing updates of the commission's work as well as the following information:

  • Description of meetings held, including dates and attendance
  • A summary of the commission’s work
  • Names of buildings reviewed and for each building reviewed provide:
    • Summary of why the building was reviewed
    • Historical summary of the individual for whom the building is named
    • An argument for retaining present naming
    • An argument against retaining present naming
    • Final commission recommendation on naming based on the preponderance of merit
  • List of naming suggestions, which should include consideration of prominent African American South Carolinians
    • Historical biography for each individual
    • An argument for the individual recommendation
    • An argument against the individual recommendation
    • Final commission recommendation on names based on the preponderance of merit

The commission is expected to present the president with a written report.


It is so important to have open, inclusive, and respectful discussion; which leads to a level of understanding; which leads to a degree of empathy and ideally, results in some ‘common ground’ from which we can move forward together.

— Robert L. Caslen, former university president

University History

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