Sharon Falcone Miller
The Pennsylvania State University
Name: Sharon Falcone Miller
Chapter Position: Chapter President
Years of Service to the Chapter: 8 years
University Position: Associate Professor
Degree(s)/Discipline: Ph.D. in Fuel Science; M.S. in Geology; B.S. in Geography and Earth Science
How did you become involved as a chapter officer?
I was nominated by Dr. Peter Luckie in 2005 and approached to be President in 2006. I was not a member as my undergraduate school did not have a chapter.
What has your chapter done that has made you proud?
We have taken an active role in sponsoring awards of academic achievement at the university and college level. Since 2008 we have sponsored three awards for outstanding research by a junior in Physical Sciences and Engineering, Social and Behavioral Sciences, and Health and Life Sciences at the annual Undergraduate Research Exhibit held by the Office of Undergraduate Education ($200 per award). We also sponsor a Chapter Fellowship that is presented to our National Fellowship Nominee ($1,000). We have also co-sponsored a TedXPSU campus event for the last two years.
What does Phi Kappa Phi mean to you?
Being a President of a Phi Kappa Phi Chapter means that I can have an impact on the academic experience of our students and community even in a large university setting by sponsoring events. I value the concept of preserving the tradition and ideals of "honor" that membership in Phi Kappa Phi represents with respect to academic and personal integrity. I also love meeting our members, especially our award winners, one on one whenever possible.
What do you enjoy most about being a chapter officer?
I enjoy interacting with students and families at the Initiation Ceremony when you can see the pride and joy in everyone's face as they publicly celebrate the academic accomplishments of their loved ones. It is amazing to see the diversity in our students and how hard they and their families have worked to get to this point. I also enjoy being able to recognize students who receive the various chapter and national awards! Their motivation and commitment to academic excellence is contagious.
What advice would you give to a new chapter officer?
For a large university it is important to seek out opportunities to collaborate with other organizations and offices on campus to sponsor events that reach all of the disciplines. This helps to raise the visibility of Phi Kappa Phi on campus and shows how the organization gives back to the academic community.
What are your hobbies?
I love my vegetable garden and cooking! I just wish we have a longer growing season in Pennsylvania.
Where are you from?
I was born in Pennsylvania but traveled during my undergraduate and graduate education to Maryland, Wyoming, North Dakota and ended up back in Pennsylvania not far from where I started.
See Sharon's Bio.