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Musselman to Expand Administrative Role as Senior Vice Provost for the University

Dr. Inga Musselman

Dr. Inga Musselman

Dr. Inga Musselman, professor of chemistry at UT Dallas, has been named senior vice provost for the University.  

Musselman, an analytical chemist, joined the UT Dallas faculty in 1992 and since 2008 has been associate provost. In the Office of the Provost, she has overseen the process of faculty review, promotion and tenure. In her new expanded role, Musselman will continue to lead that process while assuming additional important responsibilities in the areas of personnel and finance. 

“Professor Musselman has led the crucially important process by which UT Dallas faculty candidates are reviewed for reappointment, tenure and promotion,” said Dr. Hobson Wildenthal, executive vice president and provost, and Cecil H. Green Distinguished Chair of Academic Leadership. “In this role, she has worked closely with deans, faculty committees and the candidates themselves. She has earned the highest praise from this extensive and diverse group of colleagues for her diligence, her sensitivity and her bedrock integrity.  

“As a key associate, she has earned my total confidence and gratitude and, likewise, that of President (David) Daniel,” Wildenthal said. “I am fortunate, as is UT Dallas, that such an able and dedicated colleague has agreed to provide additional service to our academic administration.” 

Musselman said faculty review activities are expected to evolve in the coming years. 

“The University has been hiring faculty at a rapid pace, so the sheer number of reviews will increase,” she said. “In addition, UT System is placing an increased emphasis on teaching effectiveness systemwide, which will likely prompt a more comprehensive evaluation of teaching on our part. 

A great research university requires great faculty, those who excel in research and are effective teachers. The acts of hiring and subsequently promoting faculty are arguably among the most important decisions that a university makes. I look forward to this opportunity to work in an expanded administrative role to help shape the future of UT Dallas.

Dr. Inga Musselman,
professor of chemistry, senior vice provost 

“A great research university requires great faculty, those who excel in research and are effective teachers. The acts of hiring and subsequently promoting faculty are arguably among the most important decisions that a university makes,” Musselman said. “I look forward to this opportunity to work in an expanded administrative role to help shape the future of UT Dallas.” 

Musselman earned a bachelor of arts in chemistry from Gettysburg College and a PhD in analytical chemistry from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, followed by an appointment as postdoctoral research associate at North Carolina State University. 

Musselman has been awarded four patents, and has published more than 80 peer-reviewed journal articles and three chapters in edited volumes. She has been the primary research supervisor of eight PhD students and 24 master’s degree students, many of whom also earned doctoral degrees in chemistry. In addition, numerous undergraduate and high school students have conducted research in her lab.  

Musselman is a member of the American Chemical Society, the North American Membrane Society and the Microanalysis Society, for which she served as president in 2004-05. The Microanalysis Society presented Musselman with the Presidential Service Award in 2003.

Senior Vice Provost Maintains Distinguished Research Program  

Dr. Inga Musselman’s research interests focus on the development and application of microscopy methods for the study of materials structure in the areas of gas separations, fuel cells and bionanotechnology. 

Early in her career at UT Dallas, Musselman studied the mechanisms and limits of contrast in scanning tunneling microscopy (STM) images of molecular adsorbates, with the goal of advancing STM as a chemically sensitive microscopy technique.

More recently, she has collaborated with Dr. Gregg Dieckmann, associate professor of chemistry; Dr. Rockford Draper, professor of biological sciences; Dr. Steven Nielsen, associate professor of chemistry; and Dr. Paul Pantano, associate professor of chemistry, in using polypeptides to disperse and isolate individual single-walled carbon nanotubes. The researchers measure the lengths and diameters of the peptide-coated nanotubes using atomic force microscopy, and then study their electronic properties using scanning tunneling microscopy. The nanotubes are used to target tumor cell culture models as an alternative approach to chemotherapy. The group also has carried out a comprehensive nanoparticle environmental safety and health protocol encompassing computer modeling, chemical and physical characterizations, and biological assays.

Musselman has enjoyed a 20-year collaboration with Department of Chemistry colleagues Dr. John Ferraris, professor and department head, and Dr. Ken Balkus, professor. The team has fabricated and tested polymer-based membranes for the separation of mixtures of gases, including oxygen from nitrogen and carbon dioxide from methane. The group’s current priority is developing technology for the separation of hydrogen from carbon dioxide, a process that is important to the coal industry.

Musselman said that the economic and thermodynamic advantages of replacing energy-intensive distillation processes with energy efficient and environmentally safe separation techniques have stimulated the development of membrane systems. In an effort to correlate membrane microstructure with gas permeability properties, Musselman’s research group applies optical microscopy, scanning electron microscopy, transmission electron microscopy and atomic force microscopy techniques to investigate the microstructure of polymer-based, mixed-matrix membranes that incorporate microporous and mesoporous materials as well as metal-organic frameworks.

Media Contact: The Office of Media Relations, UT Dallas, (972) 883-2155, [email protected].

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