NJIT Faculty, Staff and Students
Robert A. Altenkirch
Wednesday, January 26, 2005
Provost Appointment

I am pleased to announce that Dr. Priscilla P. Nelson, Senior Advisor for the Directorate for Engineering at the National Science Foundation (NSF) will be joining us as Provost and Senior Vice President for Academic Affairs on or about May 1, 2005. She will also hold an appointment as Professor with tenure, pending approval of the Board of Trustees at its meeting on February 10, 2005, in the Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering.


Dr. Nelson joined NSF in 1994 and in 1999 she was appointed to the Senior Executive Service. At NSF she has served as Director of the Civil and Mechanical Systems Division, Senior Engineering Coordinator, Program Director for the Geotechnical Engineering Program, and as Program Manager for the Network for Earthquake Engineering Simulation Project that represents an $82 million federal investment in cyberinfrastructure and earthquake experimentation equipment. In 1997 Dr. Nelson was appointed to the Nuclear Waste Technical Review Board by President Clinton and reappointed in 2000. In 1999 she received the received the Director's Award for Superior Accomplishment from the NSF. Dr. Nelson was formerly Professor of Civil Engineering at The University of Texas at Austin.


Dr. Nelson has a national and international reputation in geological and rock engineering, and the particular application of underground construction. She has more than 15 years of teaching experience, has mentored many students, and has more than 120 technical and scientific publications to her credit. She has been a part of several major construction projects, including field engineering responsibilities during construction of the Trans-Alaska Pipeline System while working in industry and serving as a consultant to the U.S. Department of Energy and the State of Texas for the Superconducting Super Collider project.


Dr. Nelson holds the BS degree in Geological Sciences from the University of Rochester, the MA in Geology from Indiana University, the MS in Civil (Structural) Engineering from the University of Oklahoma, and the PhD in Civil (Geotechnical) Engineering from Cornell University.


Dr. Nelson brings to the position of Provost and Senior Vice President for Academic Affairs a broad-based and extensive set of experiences and accomplishments in industry, academe, and government and a record of leading people and managing change. Please join me in welcoming Dr. Nelson to NJIT. I am sure that all of you, as do I, look forward to working with her.