Susan Poser, dean of the University of Nebraska College of Law and Richard and Catherine Schmoker Professor of Law, announced this week she has accepted the position of provost at the University of Illinois-Chicago.
She begins her new role at UIC on Feb. 1.
“I am sad to be leaving the law college and my many great friends and colleagues at the university,” Poser said. “I am grateful for all of the opportunities I have had here.
“The college has made great strides over the past several years because of the outstanding work and commitment of the faculty, staff and students. We have enjoyed tremendous support from our loyal and generous alumni without whom we could not have accomplished all that we have,” she said.
Ronnie Green, senior vice chancellor for academic affairs, said he would work with the college to name an interim dean in the near future.
Poser, who has served the university for two decades, became dean of the College of Law in May 2010. From 2007-2010, she was the associate to the chancellor at UNL.
“Susan has done an extraordinary job as dean. She has engaged alumni as never before,” Chancellor Harvey Perlman said. “In addition, I am in her debt for the work she did as my chief of staff, where she made significant contributions across the landscape of the university.”
At UIC, Poser will be chief academic and chief operating officer and a senior advisor to UIC Chancellor Michael Amiridis.
During her tenure as Nebraska’s law dean, Poser oversaw several curriculum reforms. They include the creation of the Entrepreneurship Legal Clinic, in which third-year law students advise startup businesses about legal issues.
The college also became one of the only law schools in the country to have a required course in international law in the first year of law school. An online version of the LLM in Space, Cyber and Telecommunications Law and a doctoral degree in space law were created during her tenure, as well as joint degrees with the University of Nebraska Medical Center’s College of Public Health and the University of Nebraska at Omaha’s gerontology program.
She also oversaw the implementation of new courses in patent law, arms control, international criminal law, law and economics, rural economic development and wind energy, Indian gaming law, entrepreneurship law, comparative law and elder law.
From 2010 to 2015, the college moved up 33 points in US News and World Report’s rankings, to No. 56 out of nearly 200 schools. This year, National Jurist Magazine ranked it the nation’s No. 1 Best Value Law School.
The college raised more than $22 million during Poser’s tenure, including $5.1 million for an addition to McCollum Hall to house all of the college’s clinical programs. The building is set to open in late 2016.
Poser created three new alumni boards – the Young Alumni Council, the Entrepreneurship Clinic Advisory Board and the 2044 Alumni Board of Advisors to consult on diversity issues at the college; founded the organization of law deans from the Big Ten/Committee on Institutional Cooperation; and created a faculty mentoring program for untenured law faculty.
Her husband, Stephen DiMagno, is a UNL professor of chemistry. DiMagno will have a joint appointment in UIC’s departments of chemistry and medicinal chemistry.
“We wish Susan the very best as she assumes the provost role at the University of Illinois-Chicago,” Green said. “She and Steve will be deeply missed and we thank them both for their contributions to UNL and the state of Nebraska for the last two decades.”