Skip to content Skip to navigation

Chancellor's Letter to Campus Community: Thoughts on Returning to the Faculty

March 8, 2006

To: UC Merced Community

From: Carol Tomlinson-Keasey

Subject: Thoughts on Returning to the Faculty

Earlier today, I informed the Executive Committee of the UC Merced Board of Trustees that I will be stepping down as Chancellor, effective August 31, to return to teaching and scholarship. I'd like to share my thinking and hopes for the future of the institution we have created here together.

Over the last nine years, I have dedicated my life to the University of California, Merced, first as Special Assistant to the President for the 10th Campus and then as Chancellor. The last seven years as Chancellor have been extraordinarily intense and demanding, but also enormously rewarding. As I turn now toward other pursuits, I want to thank each of you for your leadership, dedication, help and loyalty.

Together we have founded a university that will endure. I take pride in what we have created together and smile at the generations of students who will grow intellectually and socially on our campus. I think of the faculty scholarship that is already creating knowledge in its many forms - thought-provoking books and articles, patents, start-up companies, new treatments, indeed, innovations in every discipline that will then flow into societal advances. I think of a growing campus that will power the regional economy and provide an enviable quality of life to our community.  All of this will follow from our efforts.

The challenges of bringing a new campus on line have been formidable. The political winds, environmental challenges, and financial swings of the state added significant ambiguity to our lives. The fact that each dean, director, administrator and area head began with nothing testifies to the talent and skill that were necessary to overcome the ambiguity, put a structure in place, and accomplish the task. The limited resources to do a difficult job have sparked creativity and innovation from all levels of staff. Each of you has given countless evenings and weekends, and taken the extra steps necessary to assure that tasks were accomplished, students were served, and deadlines were met. No one could have asked for more. Working with such a committed staff has made my tenure as Chancellor especially gratifying.

A nationwide search for a new UC Merced chancellor will be initiated shortly, and a panel of regents, faculty, students, community members, and UC Merced Foundation and staff representatives will be named to serve as members of the advisory committee. UC President Dynes will chair the search, which will be completed as expeditiously as possible.

I look forward, during the next academic year, to recording some of the history of the campus that only I know. Additionally, I plan to give my family a higher priority than has been possible as Chancellor. I hope I will continue to be able to contribute to the campus in my faculty role.