Penn State Greater Allegheny's Megan Nagel has been promoted to associate professor within the chemistry department.
“I'm excited about this; it means I can plan my career here at Penn State Greater Allegheny,” said Nagel. “I can plan for the future and be part of all the wonderful changes and growth that is happening on this campus.”
Nagel discovered a passion for Chemistry during her sophomore year of her undergraduate degree.
“I remember being surprised by how much I enjoyed my advanced chemistry courses, especially my first course on polymer chemistry,” said Nagel. “After a little encouragement from an undergraduate faculty member, I was set on my path to graduate school, and the rest is history.”
At Greater Allegheny, Nagel is currently developing a student research course with colleague Kristal Tucker, assistant professor of biology. CUREs (course-based undergraduate research experience) will provide skills and training for students in a research laboratory setting.
“We believe this non-traditional classroom experience is important for providing our science students a 21st-century science education,” said Nagel. “CUREs are different from ordinary chemistry and biology laboratory courses and traditional undergraduate research experiences because they are not “cookbook” experiments nor do they exclude anyone from participation."
When she is not developing new and exciting experiences for students, she is teaching and challenging her students to reach for the stars. Nagel’s favorite course to teach is organic chemistry. “This course comes with a reputation of being so difficult,” said Nagel. “I embrace the challenge of pushing students beyond what they thought they could achieve."
Nagel is a native of western Pennsylvania, an alumna of Penn State, a Hempfield graduate, a mother, and defines herself as someone who roots for the home team, who enjoys exploring and trying new things. One of her most important jobs, she said, is raising her two daughters to be kind and independent young women.