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Ralph Mueller ’83 appointed to top academic position at Purdue Northwest 

The Elon alumnus will oversee 15,000 students and more than 70 undergraduate/graduate degree programs as the university’s inaugural vice chancellor for academic affairs and provost.

By Madison Mackenzie ’18

Ralph O. Mueller ’83 has been appointed vice chancellor for academics affairs and provost at Purdue Northwest University effective July 15. 

Mueller will guide the institution in its first official year. In March the Higher Learning Commission approved the unification of two regional Purdue schools into Purdue Northwest, a single university of two campuses and some 15,000 students. In his new role, Mueller will oversee an institution of six colleges and more than 70 undergraduate and graduate degree programs.

“To serve as an inaugural vice chancellor for academic affairs and provost at Purdue University Northwest—a new entity steeped in the histories of two distinct Purdue institutions—is a unique and humbling opportunity,” Mueller said. “The challenge and the great promise of growing a common culture to fulfill the university’s mission is what drew me to come and will drive me to stay.” 

Prior to this appointment, Mueller served as dean of the University of Hartford’s College of Education, Nursing and Health Professions in Westford, Conn., since 2009. There he served as founding director of the university’s Institute for Translational Research, a multidisciplinary umbrella for collaborations among faculty, students and community partners.

Mueller graduated from Elon with a degree in mathematics. A member of the Alpha Chi Honor Society, he went on to purse a master’s degree in mathematics from Wake Forest University in 1984 and a doctorate in research methodology from Virginia Tech in 1987.  

Throughout his 29-year career in higher education, Mueller has served as a tenured faculty member of applied statistics with joint appointments in education, psychology and public policy/public administration. A prolific scholar, he has published numerous books and peer-reviewed articles.  

Keren Rivas,
5/24/2016 4:40 PM