Photos by Johanna Carson and Karl Maasdam
Jeff Nason has been named head of the College of Engineering’s School of Chemical, Biological, and Environmental Engineering. His appointment took effect March 1.
Nason, professor of environmental engineering, served for more than eight years as the school’s associate head for graduate programs. His responsibilities included supporting faculty and graduate students, student recruitment and admissions, overseeing curriculum changes, and training and supporting teaching assistants.
“I found over time that I enjoy that kind of work. I enjoy supporting people and helping people to be successful,” Nason said. “I feel that this new job is an opportunity to take that to a higher level, and I’m honored and excited to be given the opportunity. I know it will be challenging, but I think the skills I've honed over the last several years will serve me well.”
Nason joined the College of Engineering faculty in 2007 as an assistant professor and rose to the rank of full professor in 2021. He earned his doctorate in civil engineering at the University of Texas in 2006, and his master’s and bachelor’s degrees in environmental engineering and chemical engineering, respectively, at Cornell University.
“I take great pride in our collective success, and I’m excited about the knowledge and experience that Jeff will bring to this role,” said Scott Ashford, Kearney Dean of Engineering. “I look forward to seeing CBEE’s elevated academic and research leadership with him at the helm.”
Gregory Herman, professor of chemical engineering and previous CBEE head, also voiced his support.
“I’m excited for Professor Nason to take on the role as head of CBEE. We are at a critical juncture where we need to deliver on our commitments to our students, faculty, and staff,” Herman said. “These include attracting undergraduate and graduate students, delivering on our new curricula while finding new opportunities to enrich learning, and expanding our research expenditures and publications to enhance our reputation. Jeff is the right person to help us reach those goals.”
Nason’s research interests and expertise are in the area of water quality and treatment, with emphasis on particulate contaminants, physical and chemical processes, and aquatic chemistry. Recent work has concentrated on the fate and transport of engineered nanomaterials and micro/nanoplastics in aquatic systems, and the role of natural organic matter in controlling the chemical speciation and treatment of heavy metals in stormwater and wastewater. He is also engaged in engineering education research, with ongoing projects investigating the potential of virtual laboratories relative to their physical counterparts.
“One of the greatest strengths of CBEE, and of the College of Engineering overall, is its culture of collaboration,” Nason said. “It’s one of the characteristics that sets us apart from our peer institutions, and it’s led to amazing research and to faculty who are dedicated to supporting students and setting them up for success. I’m looking forward to further strengthening that sense of community and getting faculty engaged in defining and executing a vision for the future of CBEE.”