Academic Policies

AC87 Evan Pugh Professorships (Formerly HR87)

Policy Status: 


Policy Steward: 

Vice Provost for Faculty Affairs


POLICY'S INITIAL DATE: December 13, 1971


  • Purpose
  • Selection Criteria
  • Nomination Procedures
  • Selection Procedures
  • Appointment Schedule
  • Process
  • Remuneration
  • Emeritus Status
  • Cross References

    To outline criteria for appointment of Evan Pugh University Professorships.


    The designation of Evan Pugh University Professor is the highest distinction that the University can bestow upon a faculty member. The Evan Pugh University Professors will be selected without regard to college affiliation, program, or location. Candidates for this appointment:

    1. must be current, active members of the faculty holding the rank of professor, with at least five years of service to Penn State.

    2. must be acknowledged leaders in their fields of research or creative activity. This national and international leadership should be documented by (1) pioneering contributions to research published in leading journals or books and creative accomplishments widely recognized for excellence; (2) prestigious awards and citations; and (3) a substantial record of invited lectures or performances delivered at prestigious institutions. Strong preference will be given to candidates who are the founders and developers of their fields, in keeping with the scholarly tradition of the initial Evan Pugh University Professorships awarded by the University.

    3. must have demonstrated significant leadership in raising the standards of the University with respect to teaching, research or creative activity, and service.

    4. must have demonstrated excellent teaching skills and contributed significantly to the education of students, both undergraduate and graduate, who subsequently have achieved demonstrated recognition for excellence in their fields.

    5. must have strong support from colleagues, within and outside the University, who are also recognized as established senior scholars and leaders in their fields.



    Individual faculty members, departments, or programs may nominate a candidate(s) for the Evan Pugh University Professorship to the dean of the academic college in which the nominee is appointed. Candidates may be nominated for consideration in any of five divisions: (1) arts and humanities, (2) engineering, (3) life and health sciences, (4) physical sciences, and (5) social and behavioral sciences. The purpose of these categories is to facilitate the initial evaluation of nominees, and is not meant to imply that the University will award Evan Pugh University Professorships equally among all divisions. Deans are responsible for appointing committees within their respective colleges to screen Evan Pugh candidates, for preparing the dossier, and for forwarding candidates' dossiers from the college for further consideration. Deans with fewer than 100 tenured faculty at the rank of full professor in their colleges may submit one nomination, while deans with more than 100 tenured faculty at the rank of full professor in their colleges may submit two nominations. A letter of support from the dean must accompany each nomination that is forwarded and the deans, at their discretion, may rank the candidates within any division or in their entirety. It is recommended that the dossiers be prepared with great discretion to avoid disappointment or embarrassment to the nominee should he or she not be selected.The nominee need not be informed and the solicitation of formal external letters is discouraged.


    The Evan Pugh University Professors will be appointed by the President upon the recommendation of an Advisory Committee of seven eminent faculty members to be named by the President. Three committee members are to be appointed from the incumbent Evan Pugh University Professors; the other four members are to be appointed from among the outstanding faculty of the University. The membership of the Advisory Committee will be broadly representative of the range of scholarly fields represented in the five divisions. The length of each member's term will be two Evan Pugh selection cycles. A member may be appointed to continue serving for a maximum of one additional cycle.


    The maximum number of active Evan Pugh University Professorships University-wide shall not exceed one percent of the total number of tenured faculty at the rank of full professor. The current maximum number is twenty-five (25).

    In July of every odd-numbered year (i.e., 1999, 2001, etc.), the current number of active Evan Pugh University Professors will be subtracted from the maximum number. If the remaining number is two (2) or more, the Senior Vice President for Research will meet with the President to discuss the advisability of proceeding with the Evan Pugh University Professorship selection process.


    The Evan Pugh University Professors selection timeline will be as follows (specific deadline dates will be published):

    Month Action

    Memo sent from the Senior Vice President for Research to deans of the academic colleges informing them of the prospective appointment of additional Evan Pugh University Professors and the procedures for sending nominations forward to the Advisory Committee.

    Article appears in Intercom announcing requests for nominations to be sent to academic deans, with reminders to appear in each issue until the deadline.

    October Deadline for submission of nominating materials to the deans of the academic colleges.
    December Colleges complete internal review of candidates, and dean forwards dossiers of nominated faculty members, with recommendations and priorities, to the Advisory Committee.
    February Advisory Committee completes initial screening of nominees and requests external letters of reference for short list of finalists.
    March Advisory Committee completes final review of nominees and forwards recommendations of finalists to the President.
    May/June President announces new Evan Pugh University Professors.


    The financial benefits associated with the Professorship are outlined as follows:

    a. The annual salary paid each Evan Pugh University Professor by their college program will be supplemented from central University funds in the amount of at least $12,000.
    b. Funds will be made available annually to each Evan Pugh University Professor toward support of their research and/or creative works as permitted by University general funds. For information regarding the sum available please contact the Office of the Senior Vice President for Research.
    c. Evan Pugh University Professors participating in a phased retirement plan (HR29) shall have their supplemental salary reduced accordingly. The full departmental allotment will continue to be provided to be used on an unrestricted basis toward their research and/or creative works. Normally, this arrangement is in effect for a period of time not to exceed 3 years from the start of the phased retirement, at which time the Evan Pugh supplements will end.

    Individuals holding endowed chairs, professorships, or faculty fellowships may be named Evan Pugh University Professors, but will not receive associated remuneration from the Evan Pugh UniversityProfessorship, unless the other remuneration is less than that provided by the Evan Pugh UniversityProfessorship. In such cases, the faculty member will receive the remuneration provided by the chair, professorship or faculty fellowship, plus a supplement provided by funds in the Office of the Senior Vice President for Research such that the sum is equivalent to that provided for the Evan Pugh University Professorship.

    These financial benefits will be reviewed every two years, with the expectation of keeping pace with inflation.


    An Evan Pugh University Professor may retire from the University with emeritus status, as "Evan Pugh University Professor, Emeritus" with no stipend or research support.


    HR29 - Voluntary Phased Retirement


    4/30/21 - Made minor editorial changes to clarify nomination procedures and appointment schedule. Made editorial changes to include gender-inclusive language.

    9/13/19 - Changed Vice President for Research to Senior Vice President for Research

    5/12/16 - Change in title from Evan Pugh Professorships to Evan Pugh University Professorships. Change in Remuneration Section, Item b. Reference to specific funding amount removed.

    2/27/15 - Change in Remuneration Section, Item b.; Amount increased from $22,000 to $25,000

    7/1/11 - Change in Remuneration Section, Item b.; Amount increased from $20,000 to $22,000

    1/1/2010 - The title Senior Vice President for Research was changed to Vice President for Research.

    5/22/09 - Change in Remuneration Section; Added Item c.

    7/1/08 - Change in Remuneration Section, Item b.; Amount increased from $19,000 to $20,000

    7/1/07 - Change in Remuneration Section, Item b.; Amount increased from $18,000 to $19,000

    11/2/06 - Changed Vice President for Research to Senior Vice President for Research.

    7/26/06 - Change in Remuneration Section, Item b.; Amount increased from $17,000 to $18,000.