Industrial and Professional Advisory Council

The Industrial and Professional Advisory Council (IPAC) is a select group of representatives from industry, government agencies, academia, and the profession who advise the department on academic issues, current industry trends, and emerging opportunities in engineering science and mechanics. IPAC is a forum where ideas are exchanged and recommendations are made. IPAC provides direct linkage and communication between the department and the engineering profession.

The functions of IPAC:

  • Act as an advisory group on specific academic and research issues;
  • Serve as a link between the department and its industrial and professional partners, providing an opportunity for communication of current and future industry and professional needs to the department;
  • Identify steps that the department should take to meet special needs; and
  • Provide recommendations on initiatives that the department should explore to improve educational and research programs to meet the needs of the world and the profession.

If you are interested in finding out how your company can strategically partner with the engineering science and mechanics department, please contact Lisa M. Spicer, coordinator for alumni, development, and advancement, at alumnirelations@esm.psu.edu or 814-867-1569.

Current Members

Jack Appolonia     
Airgas East

Wes Blakeslee (Past Chair)    
(2014-2016) ( 2017-2019)
Blakeslee LLC

Shaun Clair
(2014-2016) (2017-2019)
Clair Broadcast

Mike Erdman (ex-officio, PSEAS liaison)
Nicker Barker Farm
Director of Engineering Leadership Development
Penn State

Jacob Fisher    
Exponent Failure Analysis Associates

Karen Franchetti (2019 Vice-Chair)
(2012-2014) (2017-2019)
Mechanical Engineering
Northrop Grumman

Marsha Perini
Applied Research Lab
Penn State

John Shaw
(2015-2017) (2018-2020)

Rich Smith (PSESMAS Liason)
Fellow Engineer
Westinghouse (Retired) 

John Starr    
Sr. VP Solution Delivery Ctr.

Nicholas Strandwitz (2019 Chair)
Assistant Professor of Materials
Lehigh University

Dr. William Warren
Vice President, Head of Innovation
Sanofi Pasteur

Dr. Sam Y. Zamrik (ex-officio, emeritus faculty advisor)
ESM Professor Emeritus
Penn State

For questions or additional information, please contact:

Lisa M. Spicer
Coordinator for Alumni, Development, and Advancement

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The Penn State Department of Engineering Science and Mechanics (ESM) is an internationally distinguished department that is recognized for its globally competitive excellence in engineering and scientific accomplishments, research, and educational leadership.

Our Engineering Science program is the official undergraduate honors program of the College of Engineering, attracting the University’s brightest engineering students. We also offer graduate degrees in ESM, engineering mechanics, engineering at the nano-scale, and an integrated undergraduate/graduate program.

Department of Engineering Science and Mechanics

212 Earth and Engineering Sciences Building

The Pennsylvania State University

University Park, PA 16802

Phone: 814-865-4523