Pushpalatha Murthy

Pushpalatha Murthy


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  • Emeritus Dean and Professor, Graduate School
  • PhD Chemistry, Brown University
  • MS Chemistry, Indian Institute of Technology, Kanpur
  • BS Chemistry, Miranda House, Delhi University


Pushpalatha Murthy has served as Associate Provost and Dean of the Graduate School at Michigan Tech since June 2016. Prior to that, Murthy was Michigan Tech's Associate Dean of the Graduate School. 

Dr. Murthy brings to the Graduate School over 30 years of experience on the faculty at Michigan Tech, including four years as Chair of the Department of Chemistry.   Prior to arriving at the Graduate School, Murthy spent three years at the National Science Foundation (NSF), serving as Program Director in the Division of Graduate Education.  Her work there included administration of the Graduate Research Fellowship Program (GRFP), the premier graduate fellowship program in the U.S.  During her time at NSF GRFP moved from convening in-person panels to an all-electronic virtual panels involving about 1,500 panelists around the world.  Her work at NSF gives her unique insight into graduate education in the US from the perspectives of the White House, US Congress, funding agencies, professional organizations and universities.  At NSF, Dr. Murthy was also actively involved in increasing the participation of underrepresented groups in the STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Mathematics) disciplines, and she implemented a new strategy to promote GRFP to Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCUs).

Dr. Murthy joined the Department of Chemistry at Michigan Tech in 1985, following industrial work at Stauffer Chemicals and postdoctoral work at the University of Michigan. Her field of research is in bioorganic chemistry/biochemistry.  She has overseen over 35 PhD and MS students during her career at Michigan Tech.  Murthy served as Chemistry Department Chair from 2000-2004, and was Director of the Michigan Tech Women in Science and Engineering group (WISE) from 2007-2012.  Her work with WISE culminated in her receiving the Michigan Tech Faculty Distinguished Service Award in 2011 for significant contributions to issues related to improving gender equality on campus.

Dr. Murthy serves on the advisory board of the organization COACh International, a grass-roots organization that is working to increase the number and career success of women scientists and engineers through innovative programs and strategies.  She conducts workshops around the world, sharing best practices and training women scientists on how to address career issues that can impede their progress in STEM careers.

Dr. Murthy is active on the Council of Graduate Schools, a member of the editorial board of the journal Protein Expression and Purification, and active in numerous efforts to enhance the career success of women and other underrepresented STEM groups.  She brings her knowledge, experience, and passion to her current mission of growing and supporting graduate education at Michigan Tech.


  • Oversees all aspects of graduate education
  • Evaluates graduate programs and student outcomes