Sue Carter Appointed Rachel Carson College Provost

May 02, 2018

By Richard Hughey, Vice Provost and Dean of Undergraduate Education 

Sue Carter, Professor of Physics, Associate Dean of Graduate Studies, and the Director for the Center for Innovation and Entrepreneurial Development (CIED).

It is my pleasure to announce the appointment of Sue Carter as Rachel Carson College Provost, effective July 1, 2018.

Sue Carter is a Professor of Physics, Associate Dean of Graduate Studies, and the Director for the Center for Innovation and Entrepreneurial Development (CIED). She holds a Ph.D. in Chemistry from the University of Chicago, and a BA in Mathematics, Chemistry, and Physics from Kalamazoo College.

Professor Carter’s vision for Rachel Carson College is to establish the college as a central support for students to create a more sustainable future and a place to gain skills needed for green careers a develop sustainable innovations to preserve the environment.

“Sue is a perfect fit to Rachel Carson College,” noted Vice Provost and Dean of Undergraduate Education Richard Hughey. “She has been dedicated to undergraduate opportunities to make a difference through research, entrepreneurship, and creativity since her time as an Assistant Professor, and has been closely involved in the College’s Minor in Sustainability Studies.”

“I’m excited to continue the legacy and vision built by the college’s previous provosts and empowered by the Webster’s foundational gift to work beside our students, staff, faculty, alumni and greater sustainability-focused community to make Rachel Carson College a leader in innovation at the interface between the environment and society” noted Sue Carter.

Over the last decade, Carter has served as the chief technical advisor and/or scientific founder at four start-up companies, including Add-vision, Solexant (now Siva Power), Soliculture and IRIS Science Academy and has also served as a scientific advisor to companies like Nitto Denko and Integrated Biometrics. She has also worked as a research staff member at several companies, including General Motors, UpJohn (now Pfeizer), AT&T/Lucent Bell Laboratories and IBM Almaden Research Center. She is a recipient of the 1996 Packard Fellowship and is a Fellow of the American Physical Society.

With more than 100 publications, Carter’s research focuses on thin film optoelectronic technologies, solid state lighting, biosensors, solar energy, and the integration of these technologies with agriculture. She has served as a board member of the UC Energy Institute and California Solar Collaborative, the Chair of the American Physics Society Group for Energy Research and Applications, and currently serves as member of the UCOP Applied Research Working Group for the Carbon Neutrality Initiative. She was the 2016 recipient of UCSC’s Climate Champion Award, was the main organizer for the UC-wide Carbon Slam, and is the founder of the Sustainability Lab (S-lab) at UCSC which provides a facility for students to pursue research projects and innovations related to sustainability.

As Rachel Carson College Provost, Sue Carter will oversee academic programs including the Minor in Sustainability Studies, the Core Course component of the Academic Literacy Curriculum, service learning associated with the Center for Agroecology and Sustainable Food Systems, and of course the awarding of degrees. She will also join the Council of Provosts, the body that continuously focuses on student outcomes and experiences within the colleges, UC Santa Cruz’ distinctive communities of scholarship.

I would like to thank Brian Arao, Regina Langhout, Ingrid Parker and Susan Watrous for their service on the Rachel Carson College Provost Search Committee.