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About CSGS

The Conference of Southern Graduate Schools is an organization of over 200 graduate schools in the following fifteen states of the southern region of the United States: Alabama, Arkansas, Florida, Georgia, Kentucky, Louisiana, Maryland, Mississippi, North Carolina, Oklahoma, South Carolina, Tennessee, Texas, Virginia, West Virginia, and the District of Columbia.

The Conference’s purpose is to consider topics relating to graduate study and research which are of mutual interest and concern to the member institutions. In addition, dissemination of information, promotion of standards, encouragement of research, and assistance to institutions starting graduate programs are important functions of the organization. And the Conference serves as a liaison with other national and regional educational bodies on behalf of the institutional members.

Jon Hakkila


Associate Provost for International Services, Academic Integrity

Dean of the Graduate School


University of Alabama at Huntsville

Welcome from the President

On behalf of all of our member institutions, welcome to the Conference of Southern Graduate Schools.


CSGS brings together graduate education leaders from colleges and universities across the South. With member institutions of all sizes from Maryland to Texas, our organization offers opportunities to engage with and learn from a wide diversity of people, places, and experiences. Through our website, online forums, resources, partnerships, and annual meetings, we come together to make graduate education better on our own campuses and across our region.


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Mary Farmer-Kaiser
Past President


Troy Terry

Dean, Graduate College and Professor, History University of Louisiana at Lafayette

Dean of Graduate Studies University of North Georgia

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Julie Goodliffe
(term ends 2026)

Assistant Dean for Graduate Funding and Research The Graduate School UNC Charlotte


Peter Harries

(term ends 2025)

Dean, The Graduate School North Carolina State University

Our History

The Conference of Southern Graduate Schools (CSGS) evolved out of informal discussions among graduate deans in the southern region, beginning at the summer workshop of the Council of Graduate Schools in 1969. From these discussions, it was determined that there was significant interest within the region in meeting periodically to discuss mutual problems. At three subsequent meetings of the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools, an ad hoc committee of graduate deans was organized to continue informal discussions and explorations concerning formation of an organization. While CSGS has had an official existence for over thirty years, a prior organization, the Conference of Deans of Southern Graduate Schools (CDSGS), goes back to discussions in 1925 and official establishment in 1927. That organization was dissolved in 1963 in view of the newly formed Council of Graduate Schools. However, it became apparent that not all needs served by the regional organization could be met by the national group and so the organization was revived. The first annual meeting of the Conference was held at the Fairmont Roosevelt Hotel in New Orleans in May, 1972. A total of seventy-three registered and attended. In addition to adopting a constitution and bylaws, approving the name of the organization, and electing officers, free discussions gave the members of the group an opportunity to exchange ideas on a variety of subjects. (From Graduate Education in the South, 1991, Thomas A. Langford, Editor)

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