Penn State Harrisburg — Chief Research Officer

Penn State Harrisburg, a comprehensive college of The Pennsylvania State University, invites applications and nominations for the campus’s chief research officer position, which is titled Associate Dean for Research and Outreach (ADRO). The ADRO will seize opportunities to expand research programs, connect research to real-world problems, and ensure translation of research to application. Initiating new partnerships and extending existing relationships with public and private organizations will be an important thrust of effort by the ADRO. Penn State Harrisburg can simultaneously advance the college’s mission and serve the region’s needs by working together with others.

In pursuing a higher level of excellence in research, discovery, and creativity, Penn State Harrisburg is excited to identify an energetic leader to inspire, develop, and implement a research and innovation plan. The ADRO will oversee or be integral to the college’s 11 research centers and institutes, 240 faculty, and a team of nine in the Office of Research and Outreach.

Penn State Harrisburg is located in Middletown, near the city of Harrisburg, the state capital of Pennsylvania. The college is easily accessible via interstate, rail routes from Baltimore, Philadelphia, Washington, DC, and New York, and Harrisburg International Airport. Penn State Harrisburg’s location makes it a destination for faculty and students drawn to working, studying, and living in an area that is fertile for many different research areas.

Penn State Harrisburg has experienced dramatic growth and development since its founding in 1966. As recently as 25 years ago, more than half of the students were part-time graduate students. The college offered only upper-division undergraduate courses, and 95 percent of the students were Pennsylvania residents. Today, Penn State Harrisburg is a comprehensive college offering four-year undergraduate degrees in 37 academic majors, 21 master’s degrees, and two doctoral degrees; more than 80 percent of the students are undergraduates. Penn State Harrisburg is the most diverse and fastest-growing among Penn State’s Commonwealth Campuses, and its 5,000 students include more than 500 international students from 50 countries. In addition to resident instruction, World Campus enrollment is over 2,000. 

A major priority of Penn State Harrisburg’s Strategic Plan is to strengthen faculty research and scholarship. Faculty-led research underpins academic excellence because new discoveries are directly incorporated into classroom learning and teaching and provide students with research experiences. Another major priority is to pursue the institution’s strategic goals and objectives through public-private partnerships. Partnerships with government, industry and the nonprofit sector connect a Penn State Harrisburg education and research programs to real-world problems and ensure translation of research to application.

The Associate Dean for Research and Outreach will report to Chancellor John Mason and will work in collaboration with the Senior Associate Dean for Academic Affairs and Administration and the leadership of the college and the University. With creative, inspirational leadership and enthusiasm for the research enterprise of the campus, the next ADRO will have the opportunity to extend the vision and strategic priorities to further enhance the University’s research footprint in order to increase extramural award expenditures to help grow extramural award expenditures to $40M a year in line with their new strategic plan. The next ADRO will lead a high-performing team that will partner with a wide range of units on campus. The ADRO will have the opportunity to further develop and build external relationships by designing and executing targeted strategies to increase research activity sponsored by the Pennsylvania state government, federal agencies, and major private foundations.

The position requires the strategic vision to plan and develop new, innovative research and outreach programs that engage faculty members, undergraduate and graduate students, government and industry partners, alumni, philanthropic donors, and other external constituencies. The successful candidate will have significant experience in a similarly complex research enterprise. Penn State Harrisburg is seeking diverse experiences and backgrounds that could include administrative experience within a university, in a government laboratory or agency, within a medical research facility, or as a senior research administrator within industry. 

For more information on the role, please visit here.

For more information on Penn State Harrisburg, please visit its website:
For best consideration, please send all nominations and applications to:

Jim Sirianni, Managing Director
Mark Halligan, Senior Associate
Storbeck Search

Penn State is an equal opportunity, affirmative action employer. It is committed to providing employment opportunities to all qualified applicants without regard to race, color, religion, age, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, national origin, disability, or protected veteran status.