Penn State New Kensington has first-rate faculty, many of whom are recognized nationally and internationally in their disciplines.
New Kensington faculty bring exciting new developments from their fields into the classroom and are at the forefront of a national trend to bring hands-on, student-centered, active-learning techniques into the classroom. They are committed to collaborative work, including challenging discussions in class, team projects, multi-media presentations, and interactive Web use.
Our faculty welcomes opportunities to incorporate internships, service-learning projects, and community involvement into their courses and programs as employers continue to look very closely for these experiences in applicants' resumes.
2015 New Full-Time Faculty:
Abdou Karim Jallow,
instructor and program coordinator,
information sciences and technology
Megan Bardolph, assistant professor of English;
Melba Amador, instructor in Spanish
Jia Li, associate professor of art and design
UPPER BURRELL, Pa. -- As the class of 2019 begins its collegiate sojourn at Penn State New Kensington, three new faculty members and a visiting scholar stand ready to prepare the incoming freshmen with diverse cultural experiences for their journey towards a post-secondary education. Abdou Karim Jallow, instructor and program coordinator of information sciences and technology, Megan Bardolph, assistant professor of English, and Melba Amador, instructor in Spanish, join the full-time campus faculty for the fall 2015 semester. Jia Li. associate professor of art and design at Beihang University in China, is a visiting scholar for the semester.
Abdou Karim Jallow
Jallow joins the New Kensington faculty after serving as instructor of management information systems at Rowan University and Smeal College of Business at Penn State. In addition, he was a post-doctoral scholar at the Department of Architectural Engineering at Penn State. Jallow received his doctorate with a focus on information management and enterprise system from Loughborough University in the United Kingdom.
His research and teaching combine interdisciplinary elements of computer science, information sciences and technology and management systems engineering. His research interests are information systems, cloud computing and service-oriented architecture, business process management, enterprise architecture, information and knowledge management, requirements management, supply chain integration, management systems engineering and risk and change management. A native of Gambia, Jallow has written numerous papers that have been published in international journals and conference proceedings.
"Abdou has a wealth of expertise that will benefit our students in the IST major," said Andrea Adolph, director of academic affairs. "Having taught for Penn State in the past, he understands the University and its goals, but he also brings so much to the campus through teaching and research experience that spans continents. His areas of interest will extend beyond the IST program over time and will influence other majors on campus. I am looking forward to seeing what kinds of collaboration that Abdou can take part in with his campus colleagues."
Bardolph recently completed her doctorate in rhetoric and composition at the University of Louisville, where she taught undergraduate courses in writing, literature, and women and gender studies. Her research and teaching interests include writing in and across the disciplines, language policy and ideology, cross-language literacies, and writing-related transfer of learning.
The Grand Rapids, Michigan native’s current research project is concerned with student attitudes toward language standards and how those attitudes both shape and are shaped by their experiences with college-level writing instruction.
"Megan is a wonderful addition to our faculty, and I look forward to her influence in our overall writing program as she settles in," Adolph said. "Written communication is a key skill for any major and in any career, and so our writing curriculum is very important to our students' success. We welcome the expertise that Megan brings to the campus."
Amador brings a wealth of Latino, Chicano and Latin America culture to the New Kensington campus. She has taught college-level Spanish, composition and grammar for the past 12 years, including the past two years as Spanish instructor at Western Kentucky University.
Amador is nearing completion of her doctorate in Hispanic Literature at the University of New Mexico, where she earned a master’s degree in Latin America Studies and a bachelor’s degree in Fine Arts. She previously taught at her alma mater, as well as Arizona State University. She has presented numerous papers and conducted seminars and workshops. Amador is active outside the classroom and has served as faculty mentor and advisor for student clubs and as a volunteer and organizer for community events.
"Melba will be an asset to the students and to our campus community," Adolph said. "Many of our students have to take a foreign language in order to satisfy a major requirement, and increasingly, understanding other languages and cultures will be a necessity in most career fields. An experienced and enthusiastic instructor will enable our students to gain skills that will follow them into their chosen fields and to enjoy the experience."
Li teaches Chinese art history. She holds a doctorate from the Academy of Arts & Design at Tsinghua University. She has written numerous books and articles on Chinese art. In addition to her educator’s credentials, Li is an accomplished artist and has exhibited throughout China and France, including the Louvre in Paris.
The visit was arranged by Adolph and sponsored by a grant from the China Scholarship Council, a nonprofit institution affiliated with the Ministry of Education in Beijing. The council provides financial assistance to Chinese citizens who want to study abroad and to the foreign citizens who want to study in China.
Li is the second Chinese artist to come to the campus as a visiting scholar in the past four years. In 2012, Shenyu Xu, associate professor of art at Northeastern University in Shenyang, taught a course about Chinese culture and exhibited her work. Xu, an aquaintance of Li, also earned her bachelor’s and master’s degrees from Luxon Academy.
"Having Jia on campus is an amazing opportunity for our students," Adolph said. " She can bring expertise to the campus that our students would not have access to otherwise, and her excitement for being here and sharing her knowledge is a sure sign that the course will be a hit with the students. I am so glad that we were able to bring her to campus."
For more on academics at the campus, visit http://www.nk.psu.edu/Academics/Degrees/degrees.htm
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