MCKEESPORT, Pa. — Megan Nagel, associate chief academic officer and associate professor of chemistry at Penn State Greater Allegheny, has been named the campus’ interim chancellor and chief academic officer through June 30, 2023. She succeeds Chancellor and Chief Academic Officer Jacqueline Edmondson, who recently announced her departure to become the president of the University of Southern Maine.
“Penn State Greater Allegheny is an exceptional and diverse community of motivated students, faculty scholars and dedicated staff,” said Nagel. “I am honored to serve the campus in this interim role. We will continue to provide access to a world-class education in a highly personalized and supportive environment. I look forward to growing campus relationships with the communities we serve and extending invitations to learn more about Penn State and the role Greater Allegheny plays in fulfilling the University’s land-grant mission.”
Nagel joined Penn State Greater Allegheny in 2010 as an assistant professor of chemistry. She received the George W. Atherton Award for Teaching Excellence in 2016 and earned tenure and was promoted to associate professor of chemistry in 2018.
Since July 2020, she has served as the campus’ associate chief academic officer, supporting local faculty on the tenure track, managing the campus advising office, participating on the campus’ 2020 – 2025 Strategic Planning Steering Committee, and helping to lead the campus Digital Fluency initiative. She also was active on the University College’s Pathway to Success: Summer Start program leadership team and the Academic Integrity Policy and Procedures Review Committee.
“I am thrilled that Dr. Nagel has agreed to serve Penn State Greater Allegheny in this critical leadership role,” said Kelly Austin, Penn State vice president for Commonwealth Campuses and executive chancellor. “She cares deeply about the Greater Allegheny campus and is committed to the success of its students, its faculty and staff, and the McKeesport community it serves. Her student-centered approach, active engagement as a campus leader, and the strong relationships she has built in the Greater Allegheny community over many years make her the ideal choice to serve in this interim role.”
Nagel’s current research interests are focused on student learning of chemistry, and more specifically, student reasoning and interdisciplinary intersections in chemical education. Her commitment to aspiring scientists was demonstrated in the work she did with other Greater Allegheny faculty to establish the SECURE program, which offers science and engineering course-based undergraduate research experiences.
As early as their first semester, students can work with faculty investigating interdisciplinary questions and presenting their research findings at Greater Allegheny’s semiannual Student Research and Creativity Conference. This past spring, Nagel accompanied some of the students to Lincoln University, where they were guest presenters at Lincoln’s 2022 Undergraduate Research Symposium.
Nagel earned a bachelor of science degree in chemistry from Slippery Rock University and her doctorate In chemistry from Penn State in 2006.
A national search will be conducted to identify a permanent chancellor and chief academic officer for the Greater Allegheny campus.