Jean VanderGheynst is Executive Associate Dean for Research and Graduate Studies and Professor of Biological and Agricultural Engineering in the College of Engineering at University of California, Davis.  Her prior leadership positions at UC Davis include Associate Dean for Undergraduate Studies (2009-2013), Associate Dean for Research and Graduate Studies (2013-2017), and Interim Dean (2015) in the College of Engineering. She received her BS degree from Syracuse University in Chemical Engineering in 1991 and PhD degree in Agricultural and Biological Engineering from Cornell University in 1997.  She has served on the faculty at UC Davis since 1996.

Dr. VanderGheynst’s research focuses on next generation biofuels and bioproducts and agricultural biotechnology.  Current projects examine the management of microbial communities in applications including water treatment, food and energy production, and soil treatment for the control of pests and pathogens. More than $9 million of her extramural funding at UC Davis has supported the development of graduate and undergraduate students, K-12 teachers and students. This includes a NSF GK-12 award to improve leadership, communication and collaboration skills, and teaching capabilities in engineering graduate students pursuing research in the areas of renewable energy, climate change and environmental sustainability. She currently serves as PI on a NSF S-STEM award that aims to increase the recruitment, retention, student success and graduation of engineering graduate students historically underrepresented in STEM and to implement and study effective practices and strategies that contribute to their success.  In 2003 she received the Outstanding Mentor Award from the Consortium for Women and Research Advisory Board for mentoring women’s research at UC Davis, and in 2016 she received the UC Davis Distinguished Postdoctoral Scholar Mentoring Award from the UC Davis Academic Senate in recognition of outstanding commitment to mentoring in the overall success of the university’s postdoctoral scholars.

Scientific and Professional Societies

Society of Women Engineers

American Association for the Advancement of Science

American Society for Agricultural and Biological Engineers

American Society for Engineering Education

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