Hardin named College of Communications dean

UNIVERSITY PARK, Pa. — Marie Hardin, associate dean for undergraduate and graduate education and professor of journalism in the College of Communications, has been appointed dean of the college, following a national search. Her appointment is pending approval by the University’s Board of Trustees at its July 11 meeting.

She succeeds Doug Anderson, who is retiring June 30 after 15 years as the college’s dean.

“I’m deeply honored to lead the College of Communications, which has been so supportive of my scholarly interests and administrative growth,” said Hardin, who also is director of the college’s Arthur W. Page Center for Integrity in Public Communication and associate director of the college’s John Curley Center for Sports Journalism. “I look forward to working with our outstanding students and my faculty colleagues as the college pursues even greater levels of achievement.”

Penn State’s College of Communications is the nation’s largest nationally accredited mass communications program. In recent years the college has seen unprecedented growth and success, most recently when winning its third consecutive national collegiate championship in the William R. Hearst Foundation’s Journalism Awards Program, the first school to achieve such an honor.

“Marie’s wealth of scholarship and student engagement experience, academic and industry service and record of administrative leadership complement wholly her deep knowledge of the College of Communications and its capabilities. During the interview process that included many qualified applicants from around the country, she convincingly emerged as the leading candidate,” said Nick Jones, Penn State executive vice president and provost. “Most important to note, though, is her investment in and passion for preparing our students to be communications professionals and scholars in a rapidly evolving field. Marie is the ideal candidate to build upon the outstanding growth and level of achievement for which the College of Communications and its graduates have become renowned nationwide.”

Hardin joined Penn State’s faculty in 2003 after teaching at Florida Southern College and the State University of West Georgia, respectively. In 2009 she was one of four Penn State faculty recipients University-wide of the George W. Atherton Award for Excellence in Teaching, and also was appointed the College of Communications’ associate dean for administration. Hardin was promoted to associate dean for graduate studies and research in 2010, and that same year she was named a finalist for the Scripps Howard Foundation Journalism and Mass Communication Teacher of the Year. During the 2010-2011 academic year Hardin was appointed an academic leadership fellow with the Committee on Institutional Cooperation, the academic counterpart to the Big Ten. In 2011 she was elevated to the college’s associate dean for undergraduate and graduate education.

Hardin received her doctoral degree in 1998 from the University of Georgia and previously worked as a newspaper reporter and editor and as a freelance magazine writer. She is a member of the national committee for the Accrediting Council on Education in Journalism and Mass Communications.

Hardin’s research focuses on issues of diversity, ethics and professionalism in sports journalism. She is author of more than 80 journal articles and book chapters and is co-editor of a new book on sports and digital media. In 2013 The University of Georgia Grady College of Journalism and Mass Communication named her a distinguished alumni scholar.

Marie Hardin has been appointed dean of Penn State's College of Communications, pending approval by the University’s Board of Trustees at its July 11 meeting. Credit: John Beale / Penn StateCreative Commons

Last Updated June 14, 2021