Honors College Dean
Noted plant biologist and veteran academic leader Heidi Appel has been named the next dean of the University of Houston Honors College. Appel comes with more than 20 years of higher education experience, which includes her role as dean of the Jesup Scott Honors College at the University of Toledo. Appel is internationally known for her research on the chemical ecology of plant-insect interactions and was recognized as a fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Science in 2018. She is often a go-to source for media on various science topics.
In her role at the University of Toledo, Appel led an institutional effort to establish common goals for Honors education across all majors, as well as a university-wide revision of Honors curriculum. She also was instrumental in developing a community engagement initiative that provided Honors students with high-impact learning experiences. Other achievements include helping to facilitate a partnership between the University of Toledo and the Toledo Museum of Art to bring visual thinking into the undergraduate curriculum, as well as the formation of a nationwide network of Honors deans and directors to provide students with transdisciplinary skills to help them address societal challenges in our world.
Appel holds doctoral and master’s degrees in biology from the University of Michigan and a bachelor’s degree in general studies from Oakland University.