Palmese named dean of Rowan’s College of Engineering

When they were seeking the next dean of the Henry M. Rowan College of Engineering, Rowan University officials knew they wanted a leader whose background includes a deep research experience and a commitment to undergraduate — and graduate — teaching.

More than that, they wanted someone who has a focus on innovation and practical entrepreneurial applications.

The school feels Giuseppe Palmese is that man. He will join Rowan as the next dean of the Henry M. Rowan College of Engineering, effective Sept. 1.

Rowan University Provost Tony Lowman said Palmese has all the qualifications the school wanted and more.

“We believe Dr. Palmese will further build our reputation for preparing work-ready engineers equipped with practical, hands-on experience,” Lowman siad. “He understands the importance of entrepreneurship and the entrepreneurial mindset in engineering education, as well as the leadership necessary to manage rapid growth with careful planning.

“I have no doubt that he will help us further build on Mr. Henry Rowan’s investment and vision for our engineering college.”

Formerly interim dean of Drexel University’s College of Engineering and longtime head of its Chemical and Biological Engineering Department, Palmese is a distinguished university professor of chemical engineering and the first George B. Francis Professor of Engineering at Drexel in Philadelphia, where he has served on the faculty since 2000. He also is a professor of materials science and engineering by courtesy.

Palmese said he is looking forward to joining Rowan University and applying his experience, vision and leadership skills as the engineering college’s next dean to build upon the college’s resounding success of the past 25 years.

“The rapid pace of innovation makes this an exhilarating time to be an engineer,” Palmese said. “Rowan University can build on its excellence in developing technically prepared graduates in an affordable and accessible way and leverage the importance of engineering colleges to our society in order to fulfill its potential as an economic driver for New Jersey and the region.”

Born in the U.S. to immigrants from Italy, Palmese spent his early childhood in Argentina and extended periods living in Italy and is fluent in three languages. Palmese earned his Bachelor of Science in engineering from Princeton University and his doctorate in chemical engineering from the University of Delaware. After graduation, he worked as a research scientist at the Center for Composite Materials at the University of Delaware and led his family’s small business before joining Drexel as an associate professor.

Stephanie Farrell, who has served as the college’s interim dean since 2019, will return to head the college’s Experiential Engineering Education Department, where she will continue to drive innovation in engineering education.