Prof. Karinna Vernaza Panel Speaker at IN4OBE Global Summit 2022
Dr. Karinna Vernaza is the dean of the College of Engineering and Business at Gannon University and a professor of Mechanical Engineering. She started her tenure at Gannon in 2003. She has authored more than 40 peer-reviewed publications centering on high-strain deformation of materials and engineering education. Recently, she has focused on systemic strategies for the retention and advancement of STEM faculty and students, and academic interventions to improve student success. She is currently the Program Director of a $1.5 million dollars Appalachian Regional Commission (ARC) Power Investment and has secured over $2.5 million dollars in grants during her tenure at Gannon University (which includes four awards from the National Science Foundation). During the past three years, Dr. Vernaza has led the academic development, space design, and R&D and operations contracts in the Institute of Health and Cyber Knowledge (I-Hack). The Gannon node of the Northwest Pennsylvania Beehive, the Erie Technology Incubator and the Small Business Development Office are part of the College’s ecosystem.
Dr. Vernaza is active in the Erie community and beyond. She serves on the board of directors of the Erie Community Foundation, Experience Children Museum, Erie Technology Incubator, and PSNERGY, LLC. She regularly volunteers on the Society of Women Engineers, serves as a mentor for young women in partnership with the Northwest Pennsylvania Girls Scout Council, and serves as reviewer for the American Society of Engineering Education Conference. She serves in the ASCEND Advisory Board, an NSF funded program, and as faculty advisor for the Society of Women Engineers Gannon Collegiate Section.
She attended the U.S. Merchant Marine Academy and earned a Bachelor of Science in Marine Engineering Systems. Dr Vernaza was awarded a Project Latin America 2000 Graduate Fellowship by the Kellogg Institute, the Coca-Cola Company, and the University of Notre Dame to perform graduate studies. She earned a master’s degree in Mechanical Engineering and a Ph.D. in Mechanical from the University of Notre Dame.