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DePauw University Appoints Inaugural Dean of the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences

DePauw University is pleased to announce the appointment of Dr. Bridget Gourley as the Inaugural Dean of the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences and Dean of the Faculty for a three-year term, effective July 1, 2023.

Bridget Gourley standing in the Green CenterDr. Gourley has been a member of DePauw’s faculty since 1988 where she has served in a wide range of leadership roles including Coordinator of the First Year Advising Program, Director of the Women in Science Program, Director of the Science Research Fellows Program, Chair of the Department of Chemistry and Biochemistry, Chair of the Committee on Faculty, Chair of the Faculty, Chair of the Resource Allocation Subcommittee, and member of the Campus Climate Task Force. For the past four years, Gourley has also served as DePauw’s Dean of the Faculty.  

As a physical chemist, Gourley is interested in the interactions of light and matter. Her most recent project in this area is supported by a National Science Foundation award entitled “Collaborative Research: Unraveling interactions that drive water-osmolyte interactions in confinement and impact self-assembly.” In addition to her scholarship and teaching in the Department of Chemistry and Biochemistry, Dr. Gourley has also taught several first-year seminars and has mentored more than 50 students in her laboratory conducting undergraduate research projects as well as serving as the faculty advisor to Students of Color in STEM.

Nationally, Dr. Gourley has a steady stream of publications and presentations. She has had multiple leadership roles with the Council on Undergraduate Research and her work has significant support from various funding agencies and several National Science Foundation awards.  

“The College of Liberal Arts and Sciences, or CLAS, centers the liberal arts in all aspects of academic life at DePauw,” Gourley said.  “It is who we are. We are creating the scaffold of tools and knowledge that develops students to think critically and creatively and effectively communicate as global citizens and leaders in professions of their choosing.”

DePauw President Lori S. White said, “Dr. Gourley is a fabulous choice for DePauw’s new Dean of the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences and Dean of the Faculty as we continue our Bold & Gold 2027 Strategic Plan and launch the three-school model. 

Vice President for Academic Affairs Dave Berque added: “DePauw has already benefited from Dr. Gourley’s leadership in many ways and DePauw is fortunate that she will serve in this new role at this pivotal time.”

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