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School of Education Mourns the Passing of Dean Penny Hammrich, PhD

Drexel University School of Education

Dean Penny Hammrich, PhD Convocation 2018

August 19, 2022

The School of Education is in mourning following the passing of its beloved Dean, Penny L. Hammrich, PhD. Dr. Hammrich died on Thursday, August 11th, 2022. In her tenure at Drexel, Penny made an indelible impact on the School of Education and was admired and loved by her colleagues and students across the university.

Dr. Hammrich first came to Drexel in 2010 as a professor and Associate Dean for Academic Affairs and was elevated to the role of Dean in 2019. In just three years, Dr. Hammrich grew the School exponentially through new academic programs and initiatives. The School added several new labs for faculty and students to collaborate on new research in education. Among them are the Lisa and John McNichol Early Childhood Education Lab that she worked to bring from an idea to a reality that has made an impact on pre-K education in Philadelphia and beyond. She also expanded the School’s Student Services department to better meet the needs of students. She paved the path for several non-credit professional development programs through the School’s Education Passport initiative that allows working professionals to earn digital badges and microcredentials beyond their degree.

More importantly however, was the impact she made with her colleagues and students at Drexel. Dr. Hammrich always said that the School of Education was her family. Her door was always open for faculty, professional staff, and students, and she would do anything she could to help them overcome whatever obstacle they faced. 

Academically, Dr. Hammrich was published over 150 times throughout her career and was the Principal Investigator on more than 35 research grants totaling over $30 million. Prior to Drexel, she served as Dean at Queens College in New York City and Associate Dean at Temple University.

A memorial service for Dr. Hammrich will be held on Drexel’s University City campus this fall. Details will be shared at a later date. Dr. Hammrich’s formal obituary can be found here.