Jones Selected as New Vice President and Provost
Nicholas Jones, the current Benjamin T. Rome Dean of Whiting School at Johns Hopkins University, has been selected as the new vice president and provost at Penn State.
Jones’ appointment, effective July 1, is subject to the approval of the Board of Trustees at its May 3 meeting. As vice president and provost, Jones serves as Penn State’s chief academic officer, reports to the president of the university and acts as chief executive officer in the absence of the president.
Jones was selected for this position at Penn State after the university launched a nationwide search for a permanent leader, as the position was held interim since November 2011 by Robert Pangborn after the previous provost, Rodney Erickson, was promoted to president.
After holding faculty positions at Johns Hopkins University in 1986, Jones was appointed chair of the Department of Civil Engineering there in 1999. He then proceeded to serve as a professor and head of the Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign in 2002. In 2004, Jones returned to Johns Hopkins University; this time, he served as dean.
Jones works with multiple associations including the American Society of Civil Engineers (ASCE) and the American Association for Wind Engineering, where he served as president in 2009-2010. He has received numerous awards such as the Johns Hopkins’ George Owen award in 1987 and Robert Pond award in 1991. He was also the recipient of the NSF Presidential Young Investigator Award in 1989, the ASCE’s Huber Research Prize in 1997, the Robert H. Scanlan Medal in 2007 and the JHU Alumni Association Excellence in Teaching Award also in 2007.
“Penn State is among the world’s premier public research universities, and I am honored and excited at the invitation to serve the University in a key leadership position,” Jones said in a press release.
Jones proceeded to mention Penn State’s excellence in ranging subject areas, from its technology to its arts programs to its professional programs.
“I look forward to working with University leaders and the Board of Trustees, and the University’s world-class faculty, staff and students, at a time of challenge, yet significant opportunity in higher education. I appreciate and embrace the mission of a great public and land-grant university and feel that my experience has prepared me well for this role,” he said.