Pericles Lewis, Yale-NUS’s founding president, will serve as Yale’s inaugural vice president for global strategy and deputy provost for international affairs, assuming duties similar to those formerly held by Senior Counselor to the President and Provost Linda Lorimer, who retired more than a year ago.
Lewis, who announced last week he will leave Singapore in May 2017, will begin his new role at Yale that fall, University President Peter Salovey told faculty Monday. Salovey said Lewis’s responsibilities will include increasing Yale’s international presence and coordinating with related offices on campus. The new position has a more academic focus than Lorimer’s former role, Lewis said.
Lewis also told the News that the scope of his job will be narrower than Lorimer’s. While her work had a global focus, Lorimer — who held the vice presidency from 2012 to 2015 — also had to oversee other administrative tasks, such as the Yale University Press and Yale online education. Lewis will work primarily with Yale’s international programs and related activities.
“Linda Lorimer’s work was essential in helping Yale build the international relationships necessary for our faculty and students to do research, share knowledge, and learn abroad,” Salovey said in an interview Monday. “It is my hope and expectation that Pericles Lewis will expand upon what has already been done, and work with our faculty to imagine the future of global opportunities for Yale.”
Salovey said Pericles will report both to the president and the provost “because we want our international activities to be especially closely tied to the work of the faculty.” The dual title is a way to combine the administrative side with the academic, Lewis said.
In addition to coordinating various global programs, Lewis said he will work to unite the University’s schools.
Since Lorimer retired last year, some administrators have argued that the University’s global strategy became less coordinated.
George Joseph, deputy director of the MacMillan Center for International and Area Studies at Yale, said Monday that he supports Lewis’ appointment because it will facilitate increased focus and a broader strategic vision for international issues at Yale.
“Having worked directly with Lorimer for more than a decade, I appreciated the value of having a University officer who is focused on international affairs. It brought coordination and vision to international efforts,” Joseph said. “I have known Lewis from his time at Yale-NUS College and I am confident that his efforts will further solidify Yale’s existing international efforts and present opportunities for new ones by having a leader with such experience and vision.”
Vice President for Communications Eileen O’Connor told the News that Lewis will continue Lorimer’s role as a vice president focused on global strategy, which benefits the University academically.
“There is a need there,” O’Connor said. “We’re a global university with programs that take place throughout the world. This will enable both students and faculty to have better coordination.”
Although Lewis will not remain a member of the Yale-NUS governing board upon his return to Yale, he said he will remain involved in strategic planning — such as long-term financial plans — for the fledgling institution.
Lewis first joined the Yale faculty in the English and Comparative Literature departments in 1998.