Celinda Kofron, currently associate director of the Center for Biomedical Engineering, has been named director of educational initiatives for Brown University’s School of Engineering, effective June 1, 2023. She will continue in both roles through the summer, transitioning to director on a full-time basis on September 1.
Ensuring exceptional educational opportunities and promoting a valuable student experience for undergraduate, master’s and doctoral students is vital to the mission of the School of Engineering, and the director of educational initiatives position is central to this work. Reporting to the Dean of Engineering, the director is charged with ensuring comprehensive support across the student experience continuum, from recruitment to graduation.
As director, Kofron will collaborate closely with colleagues across the School and University to advance the School’s priorities. She will lead admission and student recruitment efforts, oversee academic degree programs offered through the School, support the development and implementation of curricular innovations, and direct the organization and oversight of comprehensive student services, including academic advising and career services and development. She will also oversee the Student Affairs team and collaborate to design and implement student engagement strategies and activities to support student community, inclusion, equity and success. The director is one of the key members of the School of Engineering responsible for compliance with external accreditation (ABET) and for University-related academic requirements.
Kofron brings to the role strong administrative experience, scholarly interests, knowledge of Brown, and proven commitment to educational innovation and student success. In addition to serving as associate director of the Center for Biomedical Engineering since 2017, she has been a lecturer in the School of Engineering, teaching the biomedical engineering capstone design course since 2015. Beyond her own research, which focuses on in vitro tissue engineered models of physiological and pathophysiological conditions, she has more than ten years of experience in mentoring student research projects. In 2018, a team of Brown undergraduate students mentored by Kofron was awarded first place overall in the Biomedical Engineering Coulter College Design and Pitch Competition for a solution to facilitate communication between doctors and non-English speaking patients.
Kofron earned her Sc.B. in 2004 and Ph.D. in 2009 in Biomedical Engineering at Brown. In almost two decades at Brown, she has built a broad network of local biology, engineering, industry, and clinical collaborators. She was an Adjunct Lecturer of Engineering from 2015-2017, was an Adjunct Assistant Professor of Molecular Pharmacology, Physiology, and Biotechnology in 2017, and has been Lecturer of Engineering since 2017. She was an American Association of University Women Predoctoral Fellow, an American Heart Association Founders Affiliate Postdoctoral Fellow, and a National Institutes of Health Ruth L. Kirschstein National Research Service Award Postdoctoral Fellow. She was also awarded the School’s Tau Beta Pi Excellence in Teaching Award in 2018.