Emily A. Carter is the Executive Vice Chancellor and Provost (EVCP), and Distinguished Professor of Chemical and Biomolecular Engineering, at UCLA. Dr. Carter began her independent academic career at UCLA in 1988, rising through the chemistry and biochemistry faculty ranks before moving to Princeton University in 2004, where she spent the next 15 years jointly appointed in mechanical and aerospace engineering and in applied and computational mathematics. During her first stint at UCLA, she helped launch two institutes that still exist today: the Institute for Pure and Applied Mathematics and the California NanoSystems Institute.
While at Princeton, she held the Arthur W. Marks ’19 and the Gerhard R. Andlinger Professorships. After an international search, she was selected to be the Founding Director of Princeton’s Andlinger Center for Energy and the Environment. From 2010-2016, she oversaw the construction of its award-winning building and state-of-the-art facilities, the development of novel educational and research programs, and the hiring of its faculty and staff. After a national search, she served from 2016-2019 as Princeton’s Dean of Engineering and Applied Science, where she spearheaded major research, education, outreach, and diversity initiatives, before returning to UCLA as EVCP in September 2019.
Under her leadership as EVCP, many new programs have been designed and launched: a widened scope for the Sustainable LA Grand Challenge to help the multicultural communities of LA to become exemplars for sustainable, resilient, equitable future cities worldwide; a summer doctoral research fellowship program; Rising to the Challenge actions in support of Black life; professional development for administrative leaders; innovative faculty hiring strategies; transparent, equitable processes for administrative leadership appointments and compensation; improved institutional effectiveness via a “busting bureaucracy” working group and hub-and-spoke models for improved services; a campus-wide “DataX” initiative launching in 2021; and a cross-campus “Advancing Faculty Diversity” initiative under development. She has made outstanding senior leadership appointments, six of whom are female, seven of whom are first-generation, LGBTQ, Asian American, Latinx, Black, and/or Native American out of 10 leaders appointed in two years. Each school/division completed strategic plans focused on world-class excellence in the 21st century in fall 2020, which now inform budgets and hiring plans. Efforts are in the planning stages aimed at improving campus-wide support of education innovation and increasing access to a UCLA education via expanded summer sessions and internships coupled with remote courses, as well as a UC systemwide “grow our own” diverse pipeline from undergraduate to the professoriate.
In addition, Dr. Carter maintains an active research presence, developing and applying quantum mechanical simulation techniques to enable discovery and design of molecules and materials for sustainable energy and carbon mitigation technologies. Her research is supported by grants from the U.S. Department of Defense and the Department of Energy. The author of over 440 publications and patents, Dr. Carter has delivered over 570 invited and plenary lectures worldwide and has served on advisory boards spanning a wide range of disciplines. She is the recipient of numerous honors, including election to the U.S. National Academy of Sciences, the American Academy of Arts and Sciences, U.S. National Academy of Inventors, the U.S. National Academy of Engineering, and the European Academy of Sciences. Dr. Carter earned a B.S. in Chemistry from UC Berkeley in 1982 (graduating Phi Beta Kappa) and a Ph.D. in Chemistry from Caltech in 1987, followed by a brief postdoc at the University of Colorado, Boulder, before joining the UCLA faculty.