Mark Brodl, associate vice president for Academic Affairs and the George W. Brackenridge Distinguished Professor of Biology, has been named the next provost of Illinois Wesleyan University, Bloomington, Ill. Brodl, who arrived at Trinity in 2001, will be leaving the University effective June 30.
During his time at Trinity, Brodl established a national reputation for his work in support of student-faculty research, particularly work with an interdisciplinary focus. Described by former students as "someone who is completely dedicated to his students," Brodl serves as an inspiration and mentor as he prepares the next generation of biologists and researchers. Over his career, he has been a research mentor for more than 200 students, including 37 who completed honors theses. At least 17 students have been co-authors with Brodl on peer-reviewed publications. More than 45 percent of his students have entered PhD, MD or MD/PhD programs.
Brodl has received more than $5 million in funding from the National Science Foundation, as well as grants from other government agencies and private funders. As a plant cell and molecular biologist, his research has focused on understanding how plant cells respond to high temperature stress, particularly cells that are specialized in secreting proteins outside the cell. Secretory cells play vital roles in key developmental steps in plant life cycles.
He served a two-year rotation as program director at the National Science Foundation and was named a Fellow of the American Society of Plant Biologists, becoming one of the first Fellows to teach at a primarily undergraduate institution. In 2014, Brodl was named a Fellow by the Council on Undergraduate Research (CUR), an organization Trinity pioneered in establishing.
Brodl played a key role in role in obtaining significant external funding to support research and teaching at Trinity, including major grants from the Howard Hughes Medical Institute and the Keck Foundation. He was instrumental in securing grants that established Trinity's McNair Scholars.
Brodl played an active role in the planning and implementation of Trinity Tomorrow, the University's strategic plan – including establishing the new Center for International Engagement – and in planning the University's "Pathways" curriculum.
Brodl was named associate vice president for Academic Affairs for Budget and Research in January 2012. In this administrative position, he oversaw planning and expenditures of budgets in Academic Affairs, support and development for student and faculty research, and Sponsored Research, the Center for International Engagement, and the Center for Entrepreneurship. He also coordinated the Stieren Arts Enrichment Series, the Distinguished Scientists Lecture Series, and the DeCoursey Lecture Series.