Appointed Provost and Senior Vice President ad interim on January 1, 2022.
As Provost and Senior Vice President ad interim, Dr. Caroline Attardo Genco serves as Tufts University’s chief academic officer and is responsible for setting and guiding institutional priorities that advance the university’s mission as a student-centered, R1 institution. As Provost, Dr. Genco oversees Tufts’ eight schools as well as multiple cross-school programs, centers, and institutes, and works to champion and integrate educational and research activities across the university. The university’s education, research, faculty affairs, innovation, and diversity, equity, inclusion, and justice operations report up through her office. She is the senior officer responsible for supporting the Academic Affairs Committee and the Student Affairs Subcommittee of the Board of Trustees, and she oversees the Boards of Advisors for schools and colleges and the International Board of Advisors.
Dr. Genco previously served as the Vice Provost for Research (VPR) from 2019 to 2021 and as chair of the Immunology Department at Tufts University School of Medicine (TUSM) from 2015 to 2021. In her role as VPR, she worked with faculty and university leadership to develop and implement strategic research priorities at Tufts, facilitated strategies to increase extramural research funding, and enhanced the university research structures and programs, while also pivoting to respond to opportunities and challenges as they arose.
As Chair of the Department of Immunology, Dr. Genco returned the department to fiscal sustainability and re-energized the research enterprise. She directed a strategic restructuring of the department to build on the wide-ranging strengths of faculty and to focus the research portfolio toward immune-mediated diseases. Dr. Genco also facilitated interactions and collaborations with investigators in schools throughout the university and Tufts Medical Center, increasing research funding focused on inflammation, the development of novel therapeutics for the treatment, and prevention of immune-mediated diseases.
Dr. Genco has an established record as an academic and research leader. Dr. Genco is a graduate of the Hedwig van Ameringen Executive Leadership in Academic Medicine (ELAM) Program, a year-long fellowship for women faculty in medicine, dentistry, and public health dedicated to developing the professional and personal skills required to lead and manage in today's complex health care environment. She currently holds the Arthur E. Spiller M.D. Endowed Professorship in Genetics at TUSM and has a distinguished history of excellence in biomedical research. She has fostered numerous collaborations across disciplines including immunology, infectious diseases, epidemiology, biomedical engineering, and public health. Her research and translational work focus on chronic inflammation and the role of the microbiome in systemic inflammatory disorders, sexually transmitted infections, and oral infectious diseases. She has authored more than 130 scientific articles, and her research program has been continuously supported by the National Institutes of Health (NIH). She has served on numerous NIH scientific advisory committees and has worked closely with several pharmaceutical companies in an advisory capacity. She has an outstanding record as a teacher and mentor, having trained more than three dozen graduate students and postdoctoral fellows along with numerous undergraduate and professional school students.
Prior to her roles at Tufts, Dr. Genco held faculty appointments at Emory University, Morehouse School of Medicine, and Boston University School of Medicine. She received her undergraduate degree in biology from SUNY Fredonia in 1981, and earned her M.S. and Ph.D. in microbiology from the University of Rochester’s School of Medicine and Dentistry in 1984 and 1987, respectively.