Zercher to Become CEPS Associate Dean

Zercher to Become CEPS Associate Dean

Monday, November 18, 2013

Professor of chemistry Chuck Zercher, current chair of the chemistry department, has been named associate dean for academic affairs for CEPS, announced CEPS Dean Samuel Mukasa. Zercher’s appointment is effective January 1, 2014. He replaces current associate dean P.T. Vasudevan, who has also been serving as interim senior vice provost for academic affairs for the university, a role he will assume full-time at the start of 2014. 

“I am absolutely delighted to see Chuck accepting the associate dean position,” Mukasa said. “He has done a superb job serving as department chair during a difficult time when many of his colleagues were scattered around campus because of the Parsons Hall renovation. He has overseen the mentoring of several early-career colleagues, which should help CEPS in multiple ways, as we hire new faculty to replace those who retire. Chuck also has tremendous experience dealing with student issues, and he has an interest in assessing and experimenting with the ever-evolving pedagogical methods. He appreciates the need for a larger number of our students to receive international experiences and will work closely with me to grow those opportunities.” 

Zecher received his Ph.D. at the University of Notre Dame in 1989 and has been on the UNH faculty since 1991. He received the Outstanding Assistant Professor Award from the university in 1996 and has chaired the chemistry department, where he is the Robert and Gloria Lyle Professor of Chemistry, for three and one-half years. His research focuses on the development of new synthetic methods for organic chemistry and the application of these methods to molecules of biological interest. He has been associate editor of the journal Organic Syntheses since 2004. 

In this new role, Zercher will oversee academic programs, student learning, student advising, program accreditations, outreach initiatives and industrial collaboration, and international initiatives, like the CEPS study-abroad programs. 

Mukasa extended his thanks to the associate dean search committee: Chris Bauer, professor of chemistry and committee chair; Niva Gupta, associate professor of chemical engineering; Jo Laird, associate professor of Earth sciences; Chris White, associate professor of mechanical engineering; and Carol Borg, senior academic and student services assistant in the CEPS Dean's Office.