ABOUT THE DEAN
Michele Marcolongo, PhD, Drosdick Endowed Dean of the College of Engineering
Michele Marcolongo, PhDDrosdick Endowed Dean of the College of Engineering
On July 31, 2020, Dr. Michele Marcolongo began her tenure as Villanova University’s Drosdick Endowed Dean of the College of Engineering. With an engineering career spanning more than three decades, Dr. Marcolongo brings to the position experiences as an academician, researcher, administrator, inventor and entrepreneur.
A faculty member at Drexel University College of Engineering for more than 20 years, Dr. Marcolongo has held numerous leadership positions at the university and college levels. She has served as associate vice provost for Research, senior associate vice provost for Translational Research and associate dean for Intellectual Property Development. In 2018, Dr. Marcolongo was appointed co-chair of the university’s strategic plan, leading a committee of university leaders charged with setting the vision and focus for the next decade of innovative education at Drexel. Prior to coming to Villanova, she spent six years as department head and professor of Materials Science and Engineering in Drexel’s College of Engineering.
Dr. Marcolongo’s extensive research focuses on biomaterials and engineered biomedical solutions to treat disease. Widely recognized for her expertise and innovative work, she was named a fellow of the National Academy of Inventors and the American Institute for Medical and Biological Engineering. Her research has been funded by such agencies as the National Science Foundation, the National Institutes of Health, the US Department of Defense and the US Department of Education. Dr. Marcolongo serves on the editorial boards of two publications—the Journal of Biomedical Materials Research and Regenerative Engineering and Translational Medicine—and is the founding president of the Philadelphia Spine Research Society. You can review her publications on Google Scholar.
A staunch proponent of the teacher-scholar model, Dr. Marcolongo advised or mentored more than 200 graduate and undergraduate students at Drexel while pursuing her research. She was an integral part of the team that developed the university’s innovative first-year undergraduate engineering curriculum, and she received the Drexel College of Engineering’s Teaching Award in 2003. She also is a longtime advocate for inclusivity in engineering education, supporting and mentoring female faculty and graduate and undergraduate students in STEM.
In addition to her extensive work in academia, Dr. Marcolongo is a successful entrepreneur who has co-founded three biomedical technology startup companies and is a co-holder of 15 patents/patent applications. Inspired by her experiences in academia and entrepreneurship, she authored a book, Academic Entrepreneurship: How to Bring Your Scientific Product to a Commercial Discovery, which serves as a how-to guide for academic faculty, graduate students and post-doctorals on translating research from the lab to commercialization.
Prior to joining Drexel’s faculty, Dr. Marcolongo was a biomedical engineer at DePuy DuPont Orthopaedics, a role in which she invented, designed and tested medical devices. She began her career at General Electric Aerospace. Dr. Marcolongo earned a Bachelor of Science in Mechanical Engineering from the University of Delaware; a Master of Science in Mechanical Engineering from Drexel; and a Master of Science and PhD in Bioengineering from the University of Pennsylvania.
As the Drosdick Endowed Dean of the College of Engineering, Dr. Marcolongo serves as the chief administrator of the College, providing vision and leadership for its long-term strategic and academic planning, faculty research and teaching innovation; strengthening the student experience; promoting community and industry outreach and partnerships; providing financial oversight; and overseeing fundraising and alumni relations.