Diana Martinelli, who has played a critical role in adapting and expanding curriculum at West Virginia University’s Reed College of Media, was named dean of the school today (May 1).
Martinelli, who has served as associate dean since 2012, succeeds Maryanne Reed, recently named WVU’s next provost and vice president for academic affairs.
Also, Earl Scime was appointed interim dean of the Statler College of Engineering and Mineral Resources, following the decision by current dean Gene Cilento to return to the faculty.
Both appointments by current Provost Joyce McConnell are effective July 1.
“Diana is the natural next leader of the Reed College,” McConnell said. “She is a productive scholar, beloved teacher and skilled administrator who has earned the respect of her colleagues these past seven-plus years.
“I am confident she’ll work with our faculty, staff and students to build on the college’s current success and continue to grow its national reputation as a leader in modern media education,” said McConnell, who has been named president of Colorado State University.
Martinelli joined the former P.I. Reed School of Journalism in 2005 as the first Widmeyer Professor in Public Relations. In addition to serving as associate dean, she was acting dean of the College of Media from 2015-2016 when Reed was tapped to lead the Eberly College of Arts and Sciences.
Under Martinelli’s leadership, the College of Media received full reaccreditation from the Accrediting Council on Education in Journalism and Mass Communication and recently earned the Certification for Education in Public Relations, making it one of only 39 certified programs internationally and the only one in West Virginia.
She helped facilitate the development of new interdisciplinary majors and has received university-wide teaching awards at both WVU and at Ohio University, where she was previously on faculty. In 2013, she was selected to be one of 17 participants in the Scripps Howard Academic Leadership Academy at Louisiana State University, and in 2017, she represented WVU as a Big 12 Faculty Fellow at the University of Oklahoma.
“I’m honored to take on this role and continue to work among incredibly talented colleagues and students,” Martinelli said. “As an alumna of the school and a long-time faculty member, the opportunity to now serve as its dean is particularly rewarding.”
Scime, currently the chair of the Department of Physics and Astronomy, has been on WVU’s faculty since 1995. He has also served in numerous leadership positions, including as interim associate vice president for research from 2013-2015 when he returned to lead Physics.
McConnell acknowledged Scime is “an unconventional choice, but also an exciting one,” noting that he has worked with engineering colleagues on interdisciplinary research for many years.
He is also a member of the College’s award-winning robotics team, a natural extension of his own service as the founder and leader of Mountaineer Area Robotics, an internationally recognized high school robotics team whose mission is to inspire youth throughout the state and the world.
“Earl is a visionary leader and a world-class scientist who truly understands both the value and the caliber of the work being done in Statler,” McConnell said. “He will guide the faculty, students and staff through the upcoming transition period with tremendous wisdom and expertise.”
A first-generation college graduate, Scime has received the Benedum Award for Distinguished Scholarship, the University’s highest research award; the WVU Foundation Outstanding Teaching Award, the highest for teaching; and the Heebink Award for Distinguished Extended Service; the highest service award, as well as teaching and research awards from the Eberly College. He has also been recognized nationally for his research and for his mentoring of students of all ages.
“This is an exciting and humbling opportunity,” Scime said. “I look forward to serving the exceptional students and faculty of the Statler College.”
The Eberly College anticipates naming an interim chair of the Department of Physics and Astronomy in the next few weeks. The Office of the Provost will launch a national search for a permanent dean of the Statler College during the 2019-2020 academic year.