Dr. Kristina Ropella, Opus Dean of the Opus College of Engineering at Marquette University, has joined the Board of Directors for the Hispanic Professionals of Greater Milwaukee.
HPGM was formed in 2001 with the vision of showcasing Hispanic talent in the Milwaukee area and providing professionals with the support they need to reach increasing levels of success in their careers. Today, HPGM is more committed than ever to this vision, which remains at the core of its programming. As the organization grows and expands, it continually creates programs tailored to the needs of its diverse membership base, reaching everyone from students to c-suite executives.
“In her leadership role, Dr. Ropella provides vision and leads strategic planning and implementation, creation of academic programs, engagement with industry, government and other academic institutions, fundraising, and community outreach,” HPGM said in a statement. “She is a trailblazer and innovator in her field, and we are thrilled welcome her to the HPGM Board of Directors. Welcome to the HPGM familia!”
“I’m honored to join the board of HPGM and support its vision to be a resource for professional development for Hispanics in Wisconsin,” Ropella said. “A wide range of industries are represented on the board, including innovation and engineering fields. To keep innovating and moving forward, in any area, we need to have people from diverse experiences contributing. I’m excited to continue supporting these efforts with HPGM.”
Ropella joined the biomedical engineering faculty at Marquette in 1990 and served as the chair of the Department of Biomedical Engineering from 2004 to 2013. She assumed the permanent role of Opus Dean in 2015. As dean, she provides vision and leads strategic planning and implementation, creation of academic programs, engagement with industry, government and other academic institutions, fundraising, and community outreach.
Ropella is a fellow of the American Institute for Medical and Biological Engineering (AIMBE). She has served on the board of directors for AIMBE, the Biomedical Engineering Society, the Council of Chairs in Biomedical Engineering, and the IEEE Engineering in Medicine and Biology Society. She is on the Board of Trustees for the Medical College of Wisconsin, the Board of Directors at Milwaukee’s St. Augustine Prep and the Cristo Rey Jesuit High School Governance Board, New Berlin Education Foundation, George Washington Biomedical Advisory Board, PATHS-UP Advisory Board and MKE Fellows Advisory Committee.
Marquette took a significant step forward in its commitment to becoming a federally designated Hispanic-Serving Institution (HSI) by achieving “Emerging HSI” status this past fall, a designation for institutions with Hispanic or Latinx students making up between 15% and 24.9% of their undergraduate student body. With a historic first-year class this fall made up of 18% Hispanic students, Marquette is now at 15.4% of its undergraduate enrollment identifying as Hispanic, which surpasses the 15% threshold needed to achieve Emerging HSI status.