UNIVERSITY PARK, Pa. -- Cheryl Knobloch, associate director of the Women in Engineering Program (WEP), was presented with the 2013 Rosemary Schraer Mentoring Award at the Penn State Commission for Women Annual Awards Luncheon on April 26 at The Penn Stater Conference Center Hotel.
Knobloch, a ceramic engineer, launched her Penn State career 16 years ago in the Materials Research Laboratory. She has steered College of Engineering precollege outreach and award-winning undergraduate retention initiatives for women since 2002. Knobloch is also instructor and curriculum designer for two mechanical engineering first-year seminars and an engineering internship development class. She directs and designs leadership training for undergraduates and serves as adviser to the Phi Sigma Rho engineering sorority.
Knobloch networks as an invited annual reviewer and member of the Women in Engineering ProActive Network and Society of Women Engineers. She has nationally published and presented papers highlighting best practices of successful retention initiatives and hands-on outreach. Knobloch is engaged in research measuring effectiveness of precollege outreach as well as impact of retention program models.
''As an undergraduate, I had the privilege to serve as mentor while Cheryl hosted students from South Africa to be exposed to Penn State and to the world of engineering. Her impact has reached across the globe as she inspired the next generation of world class engineers,'' wrote one of her nominators, Nicole Dubowski, a 2010 architectural engineering alumna. Dubowski added, ''Cheryl's legacy continues to thrive in my career. I have already engaged in my company's efforts towards diversity, inclusion and mentorship leading over 50 incoming staff in weeklong orientations.''
Knobloch champions professional development for Women in Engineering Program (WEP) alumnae. Nicolette Yovanof, Boeing engineering manager and 2004 aerospace engineering graduate, wrote, ''Cheryl is a career and life coach for many of us demonstrating her passion for mentoring and teaching us to identify mentors to catalyze professional and personal growth. With her continued support I have been able to navigate my career to become an engineering manager.''
The Rosemary Schraer Mentoring Award honors the leadership of Rosemary Schraer, former Penn State associate provost and chancellor of the University of California, Riverside. Schraer left a legacy of excellence in scholarly achievement, dynamic governance and civic engagement. She was universally recognized as a tenacious advocate who tirelessly championed those challenged by ethnic, gender, sexual and religious adversity.
Two other women from the College of Engineering have won the Rosemary Schraer Mentoring Award since its inception in 1996, including Karen Thole, head of mechanical and nuclear engineering, in 2012, and Barbara Bogue, former director of the WEP.