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Dean Terry Rhodes with two former UNC basketball players.

Tar Heel basketball legends Phil Ford ’78 and Walter Davis ’77 stopped by my office recently. They were on the court when I was an undergrad here.

Endings and new beginnings

It is bittersweet for me to realize that this is my last dean’s message for Carolina Arts & Sciences as I prepare to retire at the end of the semester, wrapping up 35 wonderful years of service to UNC-Chapel Hill.

It has been a year of reflections and celebrations. When I became dean in early 2020 (after serving as interim dean for a year), little did I know that a global pandemic would dominate the next two years. We are now on the road to normalcy, with the resumption of in-person classes last fall and adopting a mask-optional policy in March. I’m enormously proud that teaching, learning and research continued on, even during the worst of COVID-19. I know we are stronger for the lessons learned and that many innovative instructional techniques born of necessity will stay with us.

As I look back on what we have accomplished in my time leading the College — the launch of our Program for Public Discourse, the appointment of our first associate dean for diversity, equity and inclusion, a new academic department (earth, marine and environmental sciences) and a new, very popular minor in data science — I can see that we have contributed meaningfully to the Carolina Next strategic plan. The College’s next dean will inherit a strong leadership team, a brand new undergraduate curriculum and, I hope, a sense of gratitude for landing one of the best jobs in the world.


Dean Terry Rhodes' signature