UNIVERSITY PARK – Rob Pangborn, vice president and dean for Undergraduate Education, has been named acting executive vice president and provost, effective immediately. Pangborn is stepping into the role formerly held by Rod Erickson, who was named president of the University by the Board of Trustees last week.
“Because of his current role in Undergraduate Education, Rob is the most experienced person and has the broadest knowledge regarding the duties of the provost’s position. I am confident that he will be highly effective in his new leadership role and keep the University moving forward,” Erickson said upon making the announcement.
“As I undertake these duties, I pledge a firm commitment to supporting the excellence and dedication of our faculty and staff, and to continue building upon the high-quality education that our students receive here,” Pangborn said. “I look forward to assisting President Erickson in every way I can to make proactive and substantive changes and to move the University forward.”
Pangborn has served the University as vice president and dean for Undergraduate Education since January 2006. In that position, he has been responsible for providing leadership in undergraduate education, including support for general education, active and collaborative learning, student research experiences, internships, service learning, cross-campus curricular integration and the development of facilities for technology-enhanced learning. He also oversees the University’s enrollment management across Penn State’s 20 baccalaureate degree-granting campuses. Before that, he was an associate dean in engineering for more than 10 years.
Pangborn holds dual bachelor’s degrees from Rutgers University in civil engineering with an emphasis in business, as well as master’s and doctoral degrees in mechanics and materials science. He has taught and conducted research since 1979 in the Department of Engineering Science and Mechanics in the areas of engineering mechanics and structures, failure analysis and engineering materials.