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Dorothy Kozlowski named interim dean of the College of Science and Health

Dorothy Kozlowski was inducted in 2014 as a member of the Society of St. Vincent de Paul Professors.
Dorothy Kozlowski was inducted in 2014 as a member of the Society of St. Vincent de Paul Professors. She will serve as interim dean of the College of Science and Health, effective Sept. 1. (DePaul University/Jeff Carrion)
DePaul Provost Marten denBoer announced today, Aug. 20, Dr. Dorothy Kozlowski will serve as interim dean of the College of Science and Health, effective Sept. 1.

Kozlowski, an expert in traumatic brain injury, currently serves as Vincent de Paul professor of biological sciences and co-director of the neuroscience program in the College of Science and Health. She joined DePaul's faculty in 2000 and teaches courses in neuroscience in the biological sciences department and neuroscience program as well as in the liberal arts program.

"Dorothy has been a central figure at DePaul in health sciences education. In 18 years here, she consistently demonstrated dedication to her college and the university's mission, to student success and to advancing scientific research for the good of public health," denBoer says. "She will be an effective advocate for the continuing success of CSH and for her colleagues, who provided strong support for her appointment as interim dean."

Kozlowski received her bachelor's degree in psychology from Knox College and her master's degree and Ph.D. in psychology from the University of Texas at Austin. She completed postdoctoral fellowships in neurosurgery at UCLA and neurobiology at Northwestern University.

At DePaul, she played a role in the creation of the College of Science and Health as the founding chair of the Department of Health Sciences. As founding co-director of DePaul's neuroscience program, she created opportunities for students to examine this integrative discipline with professors from a variety of departments and colleges who have expertise in neuroscience.

"Since the creation of the College of Science and Health, I have enjoyed watching us grow in enrollment, diversity in programming and overall quality. I am humbled to be given the opportunity to serve as the interim dean," Kozlowski says. "As the daughter of Polish immigrants and the first in my family to attend college, DePaul's Vincentian mission is one that resonates with me on an incredibly personal level.  As the interim dean, I want to ensure that DePaul's mission continues to be realized in our college in the years ahead. I look forward to leading the college and working with my colleagues as we begin to implement the university's new strategic plan."

As a researcher, Kozlowski has studied how the brain tries to repair itself following traumatic brain injury through neuroplasticity, the brain's ability to reorganize itself by forming new neural connections throughout life. She, her students and collaborators also study how to enhance brain repair through therapeutic approaches such as physical rehabilitation, stem cell transplantation or pharmacological agents. Her research has been supported by the National Institutes of Health and the U.S. Department of Defense.

Kozlowski received DePaul's Excellence in Teaching Award in 2010 and, the following year, the Educator of the Year Award from the Faculty for Undergraduate Neuroscience, an international organization. In 2014, she was selected to join the Society of St. Vincent de Paul Professors, a faculty organization at DePaul whose goal is to enhance the educational mission of the university in ways consistent with its distinctive values.

"My colleagues can expect me to work to help the college find common goals and areas of interest between departments, programs and institutes that highlight our strengths and keep us competitive in the challenging landscape of higher education," she says. "I will work hard to advocate for our college so that we can provide our students the highest quality education and experience in science and health."

Dr. Gerald Koocher is stepping down as dean after five years to become the first provost and senior vice president for Academic Affairs at Quincy College in Massachusetts. His last day as dean will be Aug. 31.

The Office of Academic Affairs will launch a nationwide search for a new dean of the College of Science and Health in the summer or fall of 2019 with the goal of welcoming permanent leadership by July 1, 2020.