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Georgetown Provost: Dr. O'Donnell

Vice Provost for ISC James J. O'Donnell, has been named Provost of Georgetown University effective July 1, 2002. In announcing Dr. O'Donnell's appointment, Georgetown President John J. DeGioia said that Dr. O'Donnell has the necessary combination of academic and administrative experience as well as appreciation for the University's Catholic and Jesuit identity to lead Georgetown's Main Campus successfully. "Jim is an established scholar, talented teacher and effective administrator. His unique combination of distinguished scholarship and administrative leadership will make him a dynamic and effective Provost at Georgetown," said President DeGioia.

Dr. O'Donnell, professor of Classical Studies, is a distinguished scholar and a recognized innovator in the application of networked information technology in higher education. As VP of ISC, he oversees 200 staff and a $41 million annual budget. He is also the Faculty Master of Hill College House and is president-elect of the American Philological Association, the primary professional association for classicists in the U.S. and Canada.

"Georgetown excites me," Dr. O'Donnell said, "because it is big enough to make a difference in higher education and research nationally and internationally but small enough to care intensely about how it makes that difference and to keep a strong focus on the students it exists to serve."

Dr. O'Donnell has been at Penn since 1981, holding a variety of academic and administrative positions. He has published widely and lectured extensively on the cultural history of the late antique Mediterranean world and the application of technology in higher education.

In 2000, he chaired a National Academy of Science expert study group reviewing the role of information technology in the services and strategies of the Library of Congress; this report was published as LC21: A Digital Strategy for the Library of Congress. He is the author of five books, including a three-volume edition of Augustine's Confessions, and he is now writing another with the working title What Augustine Didn't Confess. In 1990, Dr. O'Donnell co-founded the Bryn Mawr Classical Review, the second on-line scholarly journal ever created in the humanities. He is a Trustee of the National Humanities Center and has also served as a Councillor of the Medieval Academy of America. Before coming to Penn, he taught at Bryn Mawr, Catholic and Cornell. He has also held visiting appointments at Johns Hopkins, the University of Washington and Yale.

Dr. O'Donnell earned his B.A. Phi Beta Kappa and was elected Latin Salutatorian at Princeton in 1972. He received a Ph.D. from Yale in 1975.

Almanac, Vol. 48, No. 26, March 19, 2002


March 19, 2002
Volume 48 Number 26

Penn's Vice Provost for Information Systems and Computing will become Georgetown's next Provost.
Penn Medicine is getting one of the largest gifts ever to a university hospital: a $100 million endowment from Philadelphia Health Care Trust.
The Center for Folklore and Ethnography honors its first director at a symposium this week.
Last call for volunteers for University Council committees for 2002-2003.
Military Leave Policy revisions clarify benefits for those serving their country.
Health care and Dependent Care Pre-tax Expense Accounts: restrictions, tax implications and special limits for dependent care.