Graduate School alumna Rosemary Blieszner named an Alumni Fellow

September 27, 2021

UNIVERSITY PARK, Pa. – Graduate School alumna Rosemary Blieszner, 1982 graduate degree from the College of Health and Human Development, has been named an Alumni Fellow by the Penn State Alumni Association. Blieszner’s accomplishments will be recognized at the annual Alumni Fellow Award Reception Ceremony on Oct. 6.

Graduate School alumna Rosemary Blieszner,‘82g of the College of Health and Human Development, has been named an Alumni Fellow by the Penn State Alumni Association.

Graduate School alumna Rosemary Blieszner,‘82g of the College of Health and Human Development, has been named an Alumni Fellow by the Penn State Alumni Association.

IMAGE: Penn State

The Alumni Fellow Award is the most prestigious award given by the Penn State Alumni Association. Since 1973, the Alumni Fellow Award has been given to select alumni who, as leaders in their professional fields, are nominated by an academic college and accept an invitation from the president of the University to return to campus to share their expertise with students, faculty, and administrators.

Blieszner received her doctoral degree in human development and family studies and is currently alumni distinguished professor of human development and senior fellow at the Center for Gerontology at Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University (Virginia Tech). She is currently serving as interim dean of the College of Architecture and Urban Studies at Virginia Tech.

Widely respected as an accomplished scholar, educator, and administrator, with more than four decades of academic and administrative experience and leadership, Blieszner has been a faculty member in the Department of Human Development and Family Science at Virginia Tech since 1981.

Blieszner was named an alumni distinguished professor at Virginia Tech in 2002. This preeminent appointment is reserved for faculty members who demonstrate extraordinary accomplishments and academic citizenship through substantive scholarly contributions across all three of Virginia Tech’s mission areas of teaching, research or creative activity, and engagement. Only 10 members of the Virginia Tech faculty hold these endowed professorships.

For more than 30 years, Blieszner helped lead the University’s Center for Gerontology as its associate director. Her impressive career in academia includes university-level executive appointments at Virginia Tech as dean of the College of Liberal Arts and Human Sciences; assistant vice provost for enrollment and degree management; associate dean of the Graduate School; and director of strategic planning in the Office of the President.

Over the years, Blieszner has been recognized for her contributions to her professional field with many honors and awards. She is a fellow of the Gerontological Society of America, American Psychological Association, International Association for Relationship Research, National Council on Family Relations, and Association for Gerontology in Higher Education.

The author of six books, Blieszner has published over 80 refereed journal articles and other refereed publications on numerous aspects of adult development and aging, including friend and family relationships, spirituality, and early memory loss. She has given presentations throughout the U.S. and countries around the world, including Germany, China, Australia, the Netherlands, and Canada.

Blieszner received a bachelor’s degree in home economics from Mercyhurst University and master’s degree in family and child development from The Ohio State University. Her husband, Stephen Gerus is also a Penn State alumnus, 1980 graduate degree from the College of the Liberal Arts.

(Media Contacts)

Last Updated September 27, 2021