New Kensington faculty cited for excellence by national organizations

Ron Land and Jeff Roth lauded for contributions to engineering and criminal justice
faculty and student

Jeff Roth, assistant professor of administration of justice, leads administration of justice students during the processional at Penn State New Kensington's 2015 fall commencement ceremony. 

Credit: Bill Woodard

UPPER BURRELL, Pa. — Two faculty members at Penn State New Kensington, Ron Land, associate professor of engineering, and Jeff Roth, assistant professor of administration of justice, earned national recognition recently for the quality of their work in their respective disciplines.

Land was selected as a Fellow Member by the American Society for Engineering Education (ASEE). The honor was bestowed for his outstanding contributions to the society. He will be recognized by his peers in June at the society’s annual conference in New Orleans. Founded in 1893, ASEE is a nonprofit organization of individuals and institutions committed to furthering education in engineering and engineering technology. The organization promotes excellence in instruction, research and public service, and fosters technological education.

Roth garnered the SAGE Junior Faculty Professional Development Teaching Award in March at the Academy of Criminal Justice Sciences (ACJS) meetings in Denver. He was selected in recognition of his significant promise as a teacher. The accolade is reserved for young educators who are untenured and have taught full time for less than five years. Roth presented a paper, “Juvenile Burglary and Routine Activities Theory: A City-level Analysis,” at the meeting. An international association established in 1963, ACJS fosters professional and scholarly activities within the field of criminal justice. The group advocates criminal justice education, research, and policy analysis for both educators and practitioners.

Ron Land
Awards from ASEE are becoming commonplace for Land, who will retire at the end of June after 27 years at the campus. A year ago, he received the James H. McGraw Award for outstanding contributions to the Engineering Technology Division of ASEE. The Washington Township resident served as program coordinator for electro-mechanical engineering technology (EMET) for 20 years until his retirement.

He began teaching at the campus in 1989 and taught courses in electrical machinery, basic electrical circuits, instrumentation, linear electronics and senior design. Prior to joining the campus faculty, he was co-founder and technical manager of an engineering consulting firm, which primarily served the electric power utility industry. His primary industrial expertise is in power plant thermal-hydraulic performance modeling, power plant safety analysis, probabilistic risk assessment, and economic value-impact analysis of power plant modifications.

Land received a bachelor’s degree in electrical engineering from the Georgia Institute of Technology and a master’s degree in electrical engineering from the California Institute of Technology.

EMET program
The four-year EMET degree program emphasizes all fields of engineering technology related to typical, highly-automated manufacturing, production or assembly plant processes. EMET graduates learn the skills necessary to apply current methods and technology to the development, design, operation, and management of automated electro-mechanical systems. Karl Harris, instructor in engineering, will take over as EMET program coordinator as Land retires. For information on the EMET program, visit

Jeff Roth
Roth holds a doctorate in criminology from Indiana University of Pennsylvania, where he served as a consultant in the Applied Research lab and an assistant adviser in the Criminology Advising Center. His dissertation evaluated the factors that influence burglars’ target choices using surveys and home photographs.

He earned a master’s degree in criminal justice from Tiffin University in Ohio and a bachelor’s degree in government from Patrick Henry College in Virginia. Prior to graduate school, the Freeport resident worked for several years with a consulting firm in Maryland where he assisted with reviews of counterintelligence programs in FBI field offices.

Roth teaches upper- and lower-level courses at the New Kensington campus. His research interests include research methods, criminological theory, crime prevention, criminal justice systems, violence and victimology, and comparative criminology.

Administration of justice program
The administration of justice program focuses on the interrelated components of the criminal justice system: public and private sector enforcement and investigation, legal systems, correctional treatment and community services. The four-year degree is designed for students interested in entry-level employment, academic or research positions, or graduate education. The program is a collaborative effort of three Penn State campuses in western Pennsylvania: New Kensington, Beaver and Shenango. All classes needed for the degree are offered at each campus, although students in the program take some courses via a combination of Web-based and face-to-face technology in addition to the traditional classroom setting. For more about the Administration of Justice program, visit


Bill Woodard

Alumni and Public Relations Specialist

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