Four engineering faculty named fellows for STEM leadership program


By Tessa M. Woodring

UNIVERSITY PARK, Pa. — Four Penn State College of Engineering faculty were named to the 2020-21 class of fellows for Drexel University’s Executive Leadership in Academic Technology, Engineering and Science (ELATES at Drexel) program. Zoubeida Ounaies, professor of mechanical engineering; Jingjing Li, William and Wendy Korb Early Career Professor in Industrial and Manufacturing Engineering; Christine Masters, assistant dean for academic support and global programs and associate professor of engineering science and mechanics; and Rachel Brennan, associate professor of environmental engineering, will join the program for the upcoming academic year.

According to the Drexel University website, ELATES at Drexel is a one-year national leadership development program designed to advance senior women faculty in academic engineering, computer science and other STEM fields into effective institutional leadership roles within their schools and universities. Each class of fellows focuses on leading and managing change initiatives within their institutions and using strategic finance and resource management to enhance organizational missions. Fellows are nominated by a dean or provost at their institution.

“We have exceptional women leaders in our midst here in the College of Engineering,” said Justin Schwartz, Harold and Inge Marcus Dean of Engineering. “These four women have stepped up in a number of ways to help further advance the college’s initiatives. I am eager to see how they will continue to inspire change and impact tomorrow as they navigate through this leadership program.”

Since 2012, ELATES at Drexel has aimed to increase and sustain the number and impact of academic leaders in the STEM fields. Tonya Peeples, associate dean for equity and inclusion and professor of chemical engineering, and Mary Frecker, professor of mechanical engineering and biomedical engineering and director of the Penn State Center for Biodevices, are past fellows of ELATES at Drexel.

This year’s cohort of 30 women faculty represent 22 institutions across the U.S. and Canada.

Over the course of the 2020-21 academic year, Ounaies, Li, Masters and Brennan will develop their Institutional Action Projects as well as participate in discussions and community building activities that will focus on four essential dimensions of leadership: personal and professional leadership effectiveness; strategic finance and resource management; organizational dynamics; and communities of leadership practice.

The program will conclude with a symposium in March 2021 where fellows will present their Institutional Action Projects that they developed in collaboration with their organization’s leadership.


Share this story:

facebook linked in twitter email


Megan Lakatos