The University of South Carolina announced the names of three finalists for the job to replace retiring President Andrew Sorensen.

The final candidates for the top post are: Janie M. Fouke, former provost and senior vice president for academic affairs at the University of Florida; Geri Hockfield Malandra, vice chancellor for strategic management for the University of Texas System; and Harris Pastides, vice president for research and health sciences at USC.

The university's Board of Trustees is expected to make a final decision Friday on the school's next leader. Sorensen is retiring July 31.

Fouke, who is leading a review of the University of Florida's international initiatives, was dean of the College of Engineering at Michigan State University from 1999 to 2005. Before that, she was director of the newly created division of bioengineering and environmental systems with the National Science Foundation.

She completed her bachelor's degree in biology at St. Andrews Presbyterian College and earned graduate degrees in biomedical mathematics and engineering at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.

Malandra, who has served in her current position since 2002, has led the establishment of the system's first comprehensive accountability and performance reporting framework for the University of Texas' 15-campus system. She also served as an adviser to the U.S. secretary of education's Commission on the Future of Higher Education and is vice chair of the U.S. Department of Education's National Advisory Committee on Institutional Quality and Integrity, which oversees accreditation in the United States.

Malandra earned a bachelor's degree in anthropology and archaeology from Carleton College and master's and doctoral degrees in ancient studies from University of Minnesota.

Pastides, who also is director of the USC Research Foundation, joined the university as dean of the Arnold School of Public Health in 1998 and served in that position until 2003. Previously, he was a professor of epidemiology and chairman of the Department of Biostatistics and Epidemiology at the University of Massachusetts Amherst. A native of New York City, Pastides earned his bachelor's degree in biological sciences from the University of Albany, his master's in public health and his doctorate in epidemiology from Yale University.