Dr. Joseph S. Brosnan began his tenure as the 12th president of Delaware Valley College in August 2007. He arrived after serving 12 years as vice president for strategic planning and external affairs at Teachers College, Columbia University. His work at DelVal has focused on using the strategic planning process to transform virtually all aspects of the College.
At the heart of the work, which uses faculty and staff to manage a wide assortment of projects, is academics. Dr. Brosnan is overseeing an effort to expand graduate programs and attain university status. Under his leadership, Delaware Valley College has restructured into four schools – the Schools of Agriculture and Environmental Sciences; Life and Physical Sciences; Business and Humanities; and Graduate, Professional and Entrepreneurial Studies.
The College has developed a more robust experiential learning program, which is designed to prepare all undergraduate students to solve problems, connecting classroom knowledge with real-world experience. DelVal is one of the few colleges in the country that requires an experiential learning component, individualized to each student’s major. Our students are building their careers from day one, creating professional portfolios reflecting experiences such as internships, study abroad, research and civic engagement. These experiences make our students more marketable for post-graduation opportunities.
To support new programs and prepare for the future, Dr. Brosnan initiated a $50 million fundraising campaign. The public phase of the campaign began in fall 2012 and more than a year later, the total stands at more than $47 million.
One visible sign of this campaign is the construction of the Life Sciences Building, which opened in January 2014 and added classrooms, lab space and a 450-seat auditorium to campus. Another is the 398-acre Gemmill property in Warwick, Pa., part of a $31-million gift secured in 2010, which serves as a living laboratory, expanding experiential learning opportunities for students.
Dr. Brosnan earned his bachelor’s degree from Marist College in Poughkeepsie, N.Y., and his master’s and doctorate the State University of New York at Albany. At Harvard University, he completed certificate programs at the New Presidents’ Institute and the Institute for Educational Management.
He is an active community leader and is on a number of boards and foundations, including the Bucks County Workforce Investment Board, the Bucks County Economic Development Advisory Board, the Central Bucks Chamber of Commerce, the Pearl S. Buck Foundation, the Bucks County Conservation District, and the ACE Commission on Lifelong Learning. He currently serves as the president of The Co-Evolution 2050 Foundation and the vice chair of the Pennsylvania Biotechnology Center of Bucks County.
He has served as a consultant for the University of Wisconsin System and the University of Limerick.
Prior to his time at Teachers College, where he directed a $155 million capital campaign, Dr. Brosnan served from 1990 to 1995 as President of Belmont Abbey College in Belmont, N.C. He has worked as Senior Vice President for University Relations at St. Bonaventure University, Olean, N.Y., Chief Advancement Officer and Executive Director of the Potsdam College Foundation for the State University of New York at Potsdam and Associate Dean of Students at Marist College.
He also has taught at Teachers College, Belmont Abbey, St. Bonaventure and the State University of New York, and has presented at Harvard University, the American Council on Education Fellows Program, the Council for the Advancement and Support of Education, and the Council of Independent Colleges, among others.
Dr. Brosnan has two grown children, three grandchildren and lives on the DelVal campus with his wife, Carla.