Stories for Alumni

Thomas Makris

Nature made

June 01, 2018, Chris Horn

It sounds like a motorist's dream come true: Microorganisms that make gasoline. If you think it sounds farfetched, talk to Tom Makris. The assistant professor of chemistry is focusing his research on natural product biosynthesis pathways, which include not only fuel-producing microbes but also the antibiotic-making capabilities of microorganisms.

James Cutsinger

Final exam

May 29, 2018, Chris Horn

Religious studies professor James Cutsinger has wrestled with life’s deep questions of sin, faith and suffering, pondering the existence of God and the meaning of life with thousands of students over the course of nearly four decades at the University of South Carolina. Now, at age 65, Cutsinger is facing a final exam of sorts — the test of his own theological insights in the face of a stage IV cancer diagnosis.

Scott Salters

No dream too big

May 09, 2018, Page Ivey

Scott Salters thought his dream of being a physician in his hometown of Greenville — helping folks and being a role model for other young black men — was too big a dream. Now after two years at Carolina, Salters graduates in May with leadership distinction, a long list of accomplishments and activities, and a plan to attend medical school.

Mitzi Nagarkatti

Breakthrough Leader: Mitzi Nagarkatti

April 27, 2018, Chris Horn

When Mitzi Nagarkatti joined the School of Medicine as chair of pathology, microbiology and immunology in 2005, the department was bringing in about $600,000 a year in NIH funding, 81st among all such departments across the nation. The department now garners some $9.5 million per year in NIH grants (No. 17 in the country) and Nagarkatti continues to build research capacity not only in that unit but in the entire School of Medicine and across the university.

Parastoo Hashemi

Breakthrough Star: Parastoo Hashemi

April 20, 2018, Chris Horn

Parastoo Hashemi wants to know what's going on inside our heads — neurochemically speaking, that is — and she and her research team are well on their way toward figuring out how to do it. Her pioneering research on measuring neurochemical levels in the brain have far-reaching implications for treatment of depression and other neurological conditions such as Parkinson's disease.

Erica Page

Turning children into leaders and learners

April 18, 2018, Kathryn McPhail

University of South Carolina College of Education alumna and Pelion High School assistant principal, Erica Page, was named the 2018 National Assistant Principal of the Year. Though not a South Carolina native, Page began her career in education a decade ago in Lexington County after an adventurous 650-mile move south.

Caroline Potter

'A happy accident'

March 20, 2018, Megan Sexton

South Carolina Honors College graduate Caroline Parler Potter headed to England as a Rhodes Scholar in 2000. She's still at Oxford, where she earned her master’s and doctorate in anthropology and is now a medical anthropologist. She'll return to Carolina on April 20 to give the keynote address at Discover USC.

Rachel Nesbitt

Drive for success

March 05, 2018, Allen Wallace

Rachel Nesbitt has managed employees at one of the biggest golf tournaments in the world. She has traveled the country to meet leaders in the club management industry and has built an impressive resume. One that is all the more impressive because Nesbitt is 23 years old, and just a year ago was an undergraduate student in hospitality management.

Dr. Ross

A thousand passions, 1 heartbeat

October 20, 2017, Kathryn McPhail

University of South Carolina College of Education alumnus and Chapin High School principal, Akil Ross, was named the 2018 National Principal of the Year on Friday, October 20. The honor is the culmination of a passionate career as an educator that began just a few miles away from our campus 16 years ago.

Choosing right, when all the choices are correct

September 25, 2017, John Brunelli

May 2017 graduates of the University of South Carolina College of Nursing set a new record on the National Council Licensure Examination, the standardized test used for the licensing of nurses in the U.S. The cohort of 158 nursing students earned a pass rate of 99.3 percent. The year-to-date average for the college is 98.3 percent. The national average is approximately 83.6 percent.

Maxcy Monument on Horseshoe

UofSC continues to climb in latest U.S. News rankings

September 11, 2017, Jeff Stensland

Boosted by a growing reputation for academic excellence and research prowess, the University of South Carolina climbed several spots in the latest U.S. News and World Report’s latest undergraduate rankings publication released this week, now ranking 46th among all public institutions, and 25th among state flagships.

Cocky statue on campus

Get ready for a Cocky weekend

September 07, 2017, Megan Sexton

On Sept. 15, a 6-foot-5, 773-pound bronze statue of the beloved mascot will be dedicated in front of Davis College, just off Greene Street next to the Melton Observatory. Cocky is seated on a bench, with one hand raised high with a spurs-up sign. His other hand rests on a stack of books, a nod to Cocky’s role as a literacy leader around the state.

spencer

Mungo Undergraduate Teaching Award winner: Mindi Spencer

August 11, 2017, Megan Sexton

In her nine years at the University of South Carolina, Mindi Spencer has focused on adapting her teaching to better serve students’ needs. During that time, the Michael J. Mungo Undergraduate Teaching award winner says she has grown from an instructor into a teacher in the classroom, and from a teacher into a mentor outside the classroom walls.

Leaman

Mungo Distinguished Professor of the Year: Cliff Leaman

July 21, 2017, Megan Sexton

Clifford Leaman's love of teaching and performing is obvious to Leaman’s students and colleagues, who describe him as a master performer and teacher. This year, the university presented Leaman, who has taught saxophone at Carolina for the past 17 years, with its highest teaching honor: the Michael J. Mungo Distinguished Professor of the Year Award.

brandon johnson

Reaching new heights

May 31, 2017, Jalesa Cooley

Brandon Johnson decided he would study law and work to help young people in his community the day his older brother went to prison in 2009. His desire to fully understand what his family was dealing with during the time sparked a passion in his mind to dig deeper and begin understanding the legal system. Eight years later, Johnson is well on his way to that goal thanks to the Council on Legal Education Opportunity.

pastides family

Full circle

May 13, 2017, Page Ivey

For university President Harris Pastides, receiving the Ellis Island Medal of Honor is like coming full circle for the son of Greek immigrants who left their idyllic Mediterranean island home in search of better life for their children.

awards day

Top students honored at annual Awards Day ceremony

April 20, 2017, Mary-Kathryn Craft

Three graduating seniors received the university's highest honors at the annual Awards Day ceremony. Jory Mackenzie Fleming and Megan Patricia O’Brien received Algernon Sydney Sullivan awards, the university’s top honor for undergraduates, and Cory Cambridge Alpert received the Steven N. Swanger award, the university’s second-highest undergraduate honor.