Vice Chancellor for Academic Affairs and Provost
Prof. Kaufman joined UIC in 1985 as an Assistant Professor after completing postdoctoral work at the Carnegie Institution of Washington's Department of Plant Biology in Stanford, California. He was promoted to Associate Professor of Biological Sciences in 1990 and served as the Director of Graduate Studies from 1993 to 1996. He became a full Professor in 1995, and served as Head of the Department from 1998 to 2003. Since 1998, he has also held a position as Adjunct Professor of Bioengineering.
In 1994, Prof. Kaufman was named the Richard G. and Carole J. Cline University Scholar, and in 1996 was chosen to serve as a CIC-ALP Fellow.
His research on the regulation of gene expression, signal transduction and crop productivity has received continuous federal funding since his arrival at UIC and more recently has also received funding from the Illinois Soybean Growers Association. He served on the editorial board of Journal of Plant Physiology from 1991 to 1993, as the President of the Midwest Society of Plant Physiologists in 1996, and as Panel Director for the Plant Growth and Development Program at USDA in 1999. His lab has trained multiple PhD, MS, undergraduate and post-doctoral students. In addition to his many publications he also has several patents and patents pending.
Prof. Kaufman has served as an Honors College Fellow since 1992. He was a member of the Honors Council from 1994 to 1996 and for a second term from 2000 to 2003 after which he assumed the position of dean of the Honors College from 2003-2008.
From 2003 to 2008, Prof. Kaufman served as the founding Vice Provost for Undergraduate Affairs. During this time he was responsible for the oversight of several units including the five UIC Cultural Centers, the Study Abroad Office, the Guaranteed Professional Program Admissions Initiative (GPPA), the Office of Campus Learning Environments, the Oasis Project, the Urban Health Program (UHP), and the Office of Special Scholarships.
During his tenure Prof. Kaufman oversaw the development and full implementation of a many new programs at UIC, including the General Education Program: Setting the Foundations for University Study, the Freshman Read Program, the Summer College Program, the federally funded Chicago Civic Leadership Certificate Program, the NSF funded ASCEND program, the UIC Research Day, and the Undergraduate Research Experience. As Vice Provost, Prof. Kaufman was responsible for the development of UIC College Prep, a health-science focused lottery-based charter school within the Chicago Public School System. Prof. Kaufman was also the lead on UIC’s very successful decanal HLC-NCA reaccreditation self-study and visit.
In 2008 and until being named as the Vice Chancellor for Academic Affairs and Provost, Prof. Kaufman served as the Vice Provost for Planning and Programs. In addition to continuing oversight for UHP and UIC College Prep, Prof. Kaufman assumed oversight for the School of Continuing Studies, the US/Asia Executive Development Program, the Office of International Affairs, the Office of Program Development, the Office of Program Assessment and the Office of Policy Development. Projects include the 2010 UIC Campus Master Plan – A Framework for the Future, the UIC Diversity Strategic Thinking Document – Through the Lens of Diversity, the UIC Diversity Strategic Plan, the UIC Learning Outcomes Assessment Program, and the initial phases of development for a UIC Social Justice pipeline. He developed and served as the co-Chair of the Academic Directions Task Force charged with assessing the strengths and weaknesses of each academic unit on campus.