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Dr. Bruce McPheron

Dr. Bruce McPheron

Dean College of Food, Agricultural, and Environmental Sciences

An entomologist by training, Dr. Bruce McPheron became vice president for agricultural administration and dean of the College of Food, Agricultural, and Environmental Sciences on Nov. 1, 2012.

As such, he oversees more than 3,400 graduate, undergraduate and two-year students within the college, including on the Columbus campus and at the Agricultural Technical Institute in Wooster.

Dr. McPheron also oversees the research and outreach arms of the college, including Ohio State University Extension and the Ohio Agricultural Research and Development Center, encompassing more than 2,100 faculty and staff statewide. Extension has a presence in each Ohio county, and delivers knowledge from the university to the citizens of Ohio. OARDC has more than 400 research projects underway at anytime, focused on critical state, national and global issues.

CFAES has identified three Signature Areas that align Ohio’s highest needs with the college’s greatest strengths. These Signature Areas align well with the university’s Discovery Themes, including Food Production and Security; Energy and Environment; and Health and Wellness:

  1. Food Security, Production, and Human Health. Focused on improving agricultural production; enhancing the quality of food and feed; ensuring an adequate, affordable, and safe food supply; and maintaining agrosecurity to ensure food security and the basics of nutritional health for a growing global population.
  2. Environmental Quality and Sustainability. Working to understand, protect, and remediate the environment and ecosystems to ensure long-term sustainability.
  3. Advanced Bioenergy and Biobased Products. Developing biomass-based advanced energy technologies and value-added biobased products such as fuels, specialty chemicals, and fiber products.

McPheron began his career as a 4-H county Extension agent in Ohio in the early 1980s and, since 1988, has worked in research and teaching at Penn State's College of Agricultural Sciences. For more than a decade, he has served on the college's leadership team, first as associate dean and director of the Pennsylvania Agricultural Experiment Station and as dean since 2009.

A highly respected scholar, Dr. McPheron is known globally for his research in insect genetics, including the development of new genetic tools for monitoring the spread of invasive fruit fly species. His scholarly interests also include international agriculture and agricultural biosecurity with research conducted throughout much of Latin America, in Africa, and in Australia.

McPheron has a national reputation in agricultural leadership that includes serving as chair of the experiment station component of the Board of Agriculture Assembly of the Association of Public and Land-Grant Universities (APLU). He now serves as chair of APLU's Policy Board of Directors of the Board on Agriculture Assembly and has served nationally in LEAD-21, the country's professional development program for agricultural leaders that promotes linkages among research, academics, and Extension.

McPheron earned his bachelor's degree in entomology with honors at Ohio State, and his master's degree in biology and his doctorate in entomology at the University of Illinois.