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College of Information and Communications

Faculty and Staff

Shirley Staples Carter, Ph.D.

Title: Associate Dean of Access and Engagement
Department: School of Journalism and Mass Communications
College of Information and Communications
Phone: 803-777-3324
Fax: 803-777-4103
Office: School of Journalism and Mass Communications
800 Sumter Street, Room 229
Columbia, SC 29208
Resources: Curriculum Vitae
Shirley Carter


B.S., English/Secondary Education, Tuskegee University (AL)
M.A., Journalism, The Ohio State University
Ph.D., Journalism, University of Missouri-Columbia 


In January 2019, Dr. Shirley Carter was named Associate Dean for Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion in the College of Information and Communications at the University of South Carolina. She was recipient of the Charles E. Scripps Award, 2006 Journalism Administrator of the Year, awarded by the Scripps Howard Foundation and the Association for Education in Journalism and Mass Communications, during her tenure as the inaugural director of the School of Journalism and Mass Communications from 2003-2008. 

She previously served as director of the Elliott School of Communication at Wichita State University, founding chair of mass communication, journalism and communication programs at Norfolk State University, University of North Florida, and Prairie View A&M University. She was also instrumental in establishing the Journalism Leadership Institute for Diversity, a pipeline program to attract women and people of color to leadership roles in higher education. She has worked in university relations and advancement, public television, and is a former staff writer at the Virginian-Pilot as a fellow of the American Society of Newspaper Editors' Institute for Journalism Excellence.


Carter's research interests include women and leadership, diversity issues in higher education, specifically in journalism and mass communication, and multicultural images in the media. She is the author of several articles and presentations on diversity, journalism and mass communication education and leadership. Her most recent publication includes two entries in The Multimedia Encyclopedia of Women in Today's World, SAGE publications, Inc., 2013. Carter is also co-editor of Mass Communication and the Information Age, Vision Press, and several textbook chapters on public relations, advertising, religion and the media, and film. She is completing a book on women and leadership.


Carter's teaching areas include public relations and media management, and multicultural communication. In her teaching, Carter draws on her professional background in higher education leadership and media management to teach courses in public relations management at the University of South Carolina. She joined the faculty as a full professor in 2003, and began teaching full time in 2008 after serving as founding director of the school. She was the recipient of the Mortar Board Teaching Excellence Award in 2013. Carter attributes her passion for teaching to wisdom shared by Maya Angelou, "When you get, give. When you learn, teach."

Recent Publications and Presentations

Carter, S. (2013). Diversity issues in higher education. In Multimedia Encyclopedia of Women in Today's World (pp. 776-783). Thousand Oaks, CA: Sage Publications.

Carter, S. (2013). Women In Online News. In Multimedia Encyclopedia of Women in Today's World (pp. 1398-1403). Thousand Oaks, CA: Sage Publications.

Carter, S. (2012). Teaching the millennials. Scripps Howard Foundation Teaching Excellence Panel.  Presented at the AEJMC Centennial Convention, Chicago.

Carter, S. (2011, Jan. 19). Women and leadership: Lessons in politics. Presented at the University of South Carolina Leadership Programs and Women Student Services Mentor Network Seminar. 

Carter, S. (2010, August). Proven ways to flourish in academe: A mentoring plan to balance teaching, research, service and life. Presented at the AEJMC Convention, Denver.


  • 2016 – Present. CIC representative of the University of South Carolina Council of Academic Diversity Officers (CADO). Member, Building USC’s Diverse Faculty Pipeline Task Force. 
  • 2022. Chair, University of South Carolina Press Director Search Committee 
  • 2021-2022. University of South Carolina Faculty Senate Ad hoc Committee on Freedom of Expression.  
  • 2020-2021. USC Faculty Senate Committee of 9, +5 non-voting member. 
  • 2018. Appointed member, University Committee on Tenure and Promotion, August-December. 
  • 2018. Facilitator, USC Creativity Deep Dive Design Challenge, May 2018 
  • 2017-2018. Member, Garnet Apple Selection Committee, 2017-2018 
  • 2015- 2018. Member, Faculty Senate Committee on Faculty Civility 
  • 2014-2015. Co-Chair, Family Fund, University Advancement, 2014-2015 
  • 2014. Appointed Member, Faculty Senate Committee on Professional Conduct 
  • 2010-2013. Elected Member, Faculty Senate Committee on Faculty Grievance,  
  • 2010-2013. Member, Student Publication Board 
  • 2010-2012.  Advisor, Undergraduate Honors Student Thesis 
  • 2011-2012.  Member, Provost’s Advisory Committee for CMCIS Dean Evaluation and Review 
  • 2008-2011. Mentor, Dr. Anthony Palmer, African American Professor’s Program 
  • 2009.  Faculty Platform Representative, Mace Party, Summer Commencement   
  • 2008-2010. Member, University Graduate Council 
  • 2009. Luncheon Guest Speaker, Office of Admissions, Multicultural Student Day •  2007-2015, 2021. Member, Carolina and McNair Scholarship Selection Committee 
  • 2007-2008. /Chair, Faculty Senate Admissions Committee. 
  • 2007-2008. Member, Provost Leadership Task Force                   
  • 2006-2008. Member, Provost Advisory Committee on Women’s Issues 
  • 2006-2012. Editor, AT&T African American History Calendar as part of University Community Outreach                     
  • 2006-2008. Member, Office of Undergraduate Research (OUR) Advisory Board 
  • 2011-2012. Member, Provost’s Advisory Committee for College of Mass Communications and Information Studies Dean’s Evaluation Review

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