Kathryn Atchison, Vice Provost for New Collaborative Initiatives, to Step Down

October 27, 2016

UCLA Office of the Executive Vice Chancellor and Provost

To:  Deans, Directors, Department Chairs, and Administrative Officers

Dear Colleagues:

Kathryn Atchison, vice provost for new collaborative initiatives, has informed me that she plans to step down from her post on October 31, 2016, and return to the faculty full time. I am grateful to Kathryn for her dedicated and important service to the campus.

Since 2011, Kathryn has helped faculty and administrators launch novel academic and research programs, many of which cross national and disciplinary boundaries. For example, she coordinated the formation of UCLA’s first foreign affiliate, the Congo Basin Institute, which is dedicated to protecting the environment and addressing critical challenges facing that region. She also served as Chancellor Block’s representative to the UCLA Russian Flagship, an initiative sponsored by the National Security Education Program to help students achieve professional-level competence in a critical language. As a result of her involvement, UCLA developed new processes that enable more undergraduates to study abroad.

And, working with the Henry Samueli School of Engineering and Applied Science, the Graduate Division and the Academic Senate, Kathryn helped establish two integrated “3+2” programs, in which students earn a bachelor’s degree at a Chinese university and a master’s degree at UCLA.

Kathryn has been especially active and effective in developing bilateral student exchanges. These arrangements are extremely complex, requiring the implementation of policies and procedures related to homeland security, data security and privacy, student health and safety, registration, course credit and financial aid, among other considerations.

Over the past year, Kathryn consulted with faculty and leadership to consider how UCLA could expand our presence in downtown Los Angeles. The framework they developed can guide future planning and includes a rich array of opportunities for innovative programs and services.

Between July and December 2015, Kathryn was on special assignment to the Office of the Director of the National Institute of Dental and Craniofacial Research in the National Institutes of Health. During this time, she developed strategies for strengthening NIDCR’s ability to translate research discoveries into new tools and treatment.

Kathryn served as vice provost of intellectual property and industry relations from January 2005 to June 2011. A faculty member in the UCLA School of Dentistry’s Division of Public Health and Community Dentistry, Kathryn has remained an active scholar and practitioner, and she is looking forward to focusing on her scholarship on health literacy and health education. Please join me in expressing appreciation to Kathryn for her many accomplishments on behalf of UCLA faculty and students.


Scott L. Waugh
Executive Vice Chancellor and Provost