Faculty & Staff Achievements

Eileen Chia-Ching Fung Named Provost of USF

by Annie Breen, USF News

Eileen Chia-Ching Fung was named the provost and vice president of academic affairs at the University of San Francisco on March 6, after holding the position of interim provost and vice president of academic affairs since June 2023.

Fung has worked at USF for more than 26 years. She was awarded the James Irvine Dissertation Fellowship in 1997 and hired as a full-time faculty member in the Department of English in 1998. She served as chair of the English department and director of the Asian American Pacific Studies program before her appointment as associate dean of arts and humanities in 2010. Fung became senior associate dean of the College of Arts and Sciences in 2019, interim dean in 2021, and dean of the College of Arts and Sciences in 2022.

As provost, she is responsible for the university’s five schools plus libraries, academic affairs, enrollment management, online programs, international relations, and diversity and community outreach for the university’s 10,000 students, 1,000 faculty, and 1,000 staff members.

“Eileen has demonstrated her collaborative leadership, compelling academic vision, and depth of experience at USF. Her collaborative style, clear communication, and advocacy for an equitable, mission-driven, community-engaged, and student-centered education all support the foundational principles of a Jesuit education,” university President Paul J. Fitzgerald, S.J. said in a statement.

Fung founded the Honors College in 2018 with a $15 million endowment gift from Gordon Getty ’56. She was instrumental in securing a $1.5 million gift from Richard Blum to establish the Privett Global Honors Scholars Program to provide funding for student immersion and study abroad.

“As a first-generation college student from a Chinese immigrant family, one of my greatest rewards is the opportunity to play a role in offering to others the kinds of opportunities from which I have benefitted,” Fung said.

Fung currently serves as one of the principal investigators of a multi-year, $1.5 million Andrew W. Mellon grant to support the matriculation of underrepresented and underserved students from the Foothill-De Anza Community College District to USF. She helped USF to become a Minority Serving Institution and received its first Asian American and Native American Pacific Islander-Serving Institutions grant, a multi-year grant award of $1.4 million in 2023.

After earning a BA in English literature with a minor in Asian American studies from UCLA, Fung earned a PhD in medieval English literature — with specializations in feminist and post-colonial theories and ethnic American literature — from UC Santa Barbara. In her research she examines the intersection of literature and identity through cultural practices in the genres of travel and food narratives.

“USF provides students with the skills to thrive in the 21st century, readies them for careers they enjoy, prepares them to engage meaningfully with the world, and nurtures the curious mindsets of lifelong learners,” Fung said. “I am inspired every day by the resilience and care in our campus community, and by all the big and small ways that we lift up one another in support of our shared mission. USF is unique in this way.”