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USC Marshall to Host 2024 Tenure Project

USC Marshall to Host 2024 Tenure Project

The 3rd annual conference focuses on important issues affecting Black, Latinx, and Native junior faculty obtaining tenure in U.S. business schools.

USC Marshall to Host 2024 Tenure Project

Sarah Townsend, USC Marshall School of Business
[USC Photo]

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Representation matters, whether it be at the front of the classroom or in leadership when training the next generation of business leaders at the collegiate level.

Cue the foundation of The Tenure Project. Wendy de la Rosa (The Wharton School) and Esther Uduehi (Foster School of Business) set out in 2021 to close the tenure gap and provide vital resources and networking opportunities for underrepresented faculty at business schools nationwide.

The USC Marshall School of Business, a gold sponsor since the project’s inception, will host the 3rd annual TENURE PROJECT CONFERENCE on the university campus, from July 22–24, 2024. Grounded in a supportive environment, the conference will offer programs and workshops designed to help junior faculty navigate the complex tenure track and intentionally address the important issues affecting Black, Latinx, and Native junior faculty as they pursue tenure in U.S. business schools.

With support from the Office of DIVERSITY, EQUITY, AND INCLUSION and Marshall staff members to faculty participation and senior leadership, it will be a Marshall-wide effort to welcome and engage junior faculty in attendance.

Conference workshops and sessions will be designed by a Senior Planning Committee. The group will be led by SARAH TOWNSEND, the vice dean of diversity, equity, and inclusion and an associate professor of management and organization, and will comprise tenured faculty, including TRACIE MAJORS/USC LEVENTHAL SCHOOL OF ACCOUNTING; SRIRAM DASU and GOURAB MUKHERJEE/DATA SCIENCES AND OPERATIONS; CHRISTOPHER JONES and ARTHUR KORTEWEG/FINANCE AND BUSINESS ECONOMICS; ERIC ANICICH and JOE RAFFIEE/MANAGEMENT AND ORGANIZATION; and DAVIDE PROSERPIO/MARKETING.

“What is exciting about Marshall hosting the conference is that we have senior faculty members from each of our tenure-granting departments working to design and plan the sessions as well as incredible support from DEAN GEOFF GARRETT for our goals for the conference,” Townsend said. “As a dedicated group, we have the chance to think deeply about the kinds of workshops that will be helpful and which senior faculty from across the nation we should invite to come and mentor the attending junior faculty.”

Conference participants will attend professional development and community-building workshops over the two-day convening. The Marshall senior planning committee is early in the process, but one goal is clear: to develop new programs that will offer something for everyone.

Whether attending for the first or third time, attendees will experience content ranging from basic to advanced subjects. Programs held during the 2024 Conference will be tailored to the different stages individuals may be experiencing within the pre-tenure period.

My personal goal for the conference is to ensure that junior faculty attendees are able to build relationships at the conference that enable them to support each other when they’re not at the conference, relationships that can help them through the tenure process.

— Sarah Townsend

Vice Dean of Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion
Associate Professor of Management and Organization

Throughout the conference, senior faculty from Marshall and other invited business schools will lead general and discipline-specific sessions, help workshop tenure packets, and offer mentorship opportunities to the junior faculty. Dean Garrett will also host a special session for attendees on the second day of the conference.

“Who better to give advice on tenure than those with tenure? They can mentor and strategize with them about letter writing, publications, networking, managing co-authors — all of the critical pieces that are important to manage on the road to getting tenure,” Townsend said.

As the planning continues and details become finalized, information such as the conference agenda, keynote speakers, and application deadlines, among other details, will be shared. The Tenure Project will cover attendees’ registration fees, meals, and lodging, and also provide a $400 honorarium to help with personal travel costs and incidental expenditures.

Every conference needs a little fun time and USC plans to add an Angeleno twist, highlighting the global diversity and excellence of LA’s culinary landscape. The Marshall Senior Planning Committee is working on an evening soiree to be held at an iconic location as well as dine-around excursions where small groups will have more personal time to get to know one another and foster deeper connections.

“We want to make sure there’s time during the conference for people to connect with each other in a more meaningful way, both among the junior faculty and between the junior and senior faculty to develop the relationships that can really last outside the conference,” Townsend continued. “My personal goal for the conference it to ensure that junior faculty attendees are able to build relationships at the conference that enable them to support each other when they’re not at the conference, relationships that can help them through the tenure process.”

Townsend hopes the attendees won’t only gain essential skills and knowledge but an entire team of support to help them on their tenure track.

Eligibility Requirements
The Tenure Project welcomes and considers applications from any eligible individual without respect to their race, color, sex, age, religion, national and ethnic origin, disability, veteran status, socioeconomic background, sexual orientation, gender identity, gender expression, or any other protected characteristic as defined in a Notice of Non-Discrimination issued by any of the participating universities, including those issued by the UNIVERSITY OF SOUTHERN CALIFORNIA, UNIVERSITY OF PENNSYLVANIA, and UNIVERSITY OF WASHINGTON. The Tenure Project is operated in accordance with those notices.

Participants must be on the tenure track or in a postdoctoral position at a U.S. business school in the fall of 2024 to participate. It is not necessary to have participated in the PhD Project to join the Tenure Project.