Principles of Community


We the students, alumni, faculty, staff, and administrators of the University of South Florida unite as a community to propel the success of “One USF.” We celebrate our accomplishments and respect our complex differences. We commit ourselves to shaping the future in a community that cherishes justice, accessibility, and meaningful participation by all of its members. USF starts with US. In this spirit, we state the following Principles of Community.

Principles of Community 

We affirm the value of excellence. Our essential pursuit of truth and wisdom depends upon fairness and equity. We recognize that individual and collective excellence entails a responsibility to ensure that every member of our community has the opportunity to succeed.

Excellence with Equity

We affirm the value of diversity, individual dignity, equity, and our common humanity. Diversity of lived experiences, thought, and values enriches our lives and our whole university community. We seek the intentional inclusion of the broadest possible range of these perspectives essential to a university with local, state, national, and global impact.

Diversity with Inclusion

We affirm the value of academic freedom and the inherent value of people’s right to express themselves respectfully, freely, safely, and with civility. We reject the demeaning acts of bullying, violence, prejudice, and discrimination as they undermine the community we aspire to be.

Freedom with Responsbility

We affirm the value of evidence and seek perspectives to foster productive communication, dialogue, and constructive disagreement. We listen respectfully and reject language that demeans any member of the community. We embrace differences by learning through open debate in a spirit of curiosity

Dialogue with Respect

We affirm the value of a clear and transparent working and learning environment that promotes honesty, fairness, and trust. We commit our time, talents, and resources to building a culture of caring that promotes the integrity of our relationships and the sustainable well-being of the entire community. We are personally responsible, across every level, for treating each other with respect, candor, and accountability.

Transparency with Accountability

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President Currall Introduces the Principles of Community

Screenshot of first slide of PowerPoint, "Principles of Community" 

October 30, 2019: President Currall Launches Principles of Community Task Force

University community,

In my introductory letter on my first day at USF, I shared with you my vision for advancing USF’s impressive trajectory of success. As I wrote, “The bedrock of our strategic renewal is a
commitment to community principles that reinforce inclusion, civility, open expression,
evidence-based deliberations and vigorous debate. These dynamics are crucial to our success
in forging a new future for USF.”

In my letter, I shared that I would be establishing a task force comprised of a broad crosssection of university stakeholders to develop a document that captures USF’s Principles of

Today I am pleased to announce the members of the task force with a charge of producing
USF’s Principles of Community. My hope is that those Principles will reinforce a campus climate
of mutual support among faculty, staff and students. The Principles will also help further
facilitate our shared strategy, mission, vision, and goals for ONE USF, Geographically

The task force members are:

  • Dr. Charles Adams, Dean, Genshaft Honors College, Chair
  • Dr. Ray Arsenault, USF St. Petersburg Faculty Senate President
  • Dr. Michael Cross, Director of Undergraduate Research
  • Dr. Timothy Boaz, USF Tampa Faculty Senate President
  • Ms. Roberta “Bobby” Collins, Administrative Advisory Council President
  • Ms. Britney Deas, USF Tampa Student Government President
  • Ms. Jadzia “Jazzy” Duarte, USF St. Petersburg Student Government President
  • Dr. Alfred Frontera, Associate Professor of Neurology, Morsani College of Medicine
  • Dr. Michael Gillespie, USF Sarasota-Manatee Faculty Senate President
  • Mr. Corey Posey, USF Sarasota-Manatee Diversity, Equity and Inclusion Officer
  • Mr. Bill McCausland, Vice President, Executive Director Alumni Association
  • Dr. Jacob Diaz, USF St. Petersburg Dean of Students
  • Ms. Meredith Scerba, Senior Associate Athletic Director
  • Dr. Dwayne Smith, Dean, Graduate Studies
  • Ms. Isabelle Starner, USF Sarasota-Manatee Student Government President
  • Dr. Maya Trotz, Professor, Civil and Environmental Engineering
  • Dr. Diane Price Herndl, Professor and Chair, Women's & Gender Studies and Professor, English
  • Dr. Deirdre Cobb-Roberts, Associate Professor in Social Foundations of Education & program coordinator

To assist in the task force’s work, I have asked Steve Prevaux, University Ombudsman, to serve
in a facilitative role.

I want to thank each of these individuals for their contributions of time, energy and ideas as
part of this important effort. I also thank them for their willingness to seek out suggestions and
feedback from their respective constituencies throughout the process.

I look forward to receiving the work of the task force by 28 February 2020, at which point I will
share their recommendations with the wider USF community.

Thank you,

Steven C. Currall, Ph.D.