October 2023

Sarah Michel Named School of Pharmacy Dean

October 6, 2023    |  

University of Maryland, Baltimore (UMB) President Bruce E. Jarrell, MD, FACS, has announced the appointment of Sarah L.J. Michel, PhD, as dean of the University of Maryland School of Pharmacy (UMSOP). Below is the announcement from President Jarrell. 

Sarah Michel, PhD

Sarah Michel, PhD

Dear UMB Community,

I am happy to report that after an extensive national search, Sarah L.J. Michel, PhD, has been named dean of the University of Maryland School of Pharmacy (UMSOP) effective Oct. 15, 2023. Since June she has served as interim dean and was previously chair of UMSOP’s Department of Pharmaceutical Sciences (PSC) and associate dean for graduate programs.

As a pharmaceutical researcher, Dr. Michel is an internationally recognized leader in the field of metals in medicine. Her work has been funded by the National Institutes of Health (NIH), the National Science Foundation (NSF), and U.S. Army Research labs for investigating the roles that metals play in the regulation of chronic inflammation, cancer, and neurodegenerative diseases.

She also has been active in clinical research through Food and Drug Administration (FDA) grants and has been closely involved with the Centers of Excellence in Regulatory Science and Innovation. Notably, a recent FDA clinical trial headed by Dr. Michel led the FDA to issue new guidance on how generic nanomedicines should be evaluated for approval. In addition, she is part of an FDA-funded PSC and University of Maryland School of Dentistry team of researchers investigating the safety of electronic cigarettes.

In her 19 years at UMSOP, Dr. Michel has been intricately involved in all of the school’s educational aspects, at the Doctor of Pharmacy and PhD and MS levels, where she redesigned the core biochemistry course to emphasize clinical application to pharmacy and led the development of the PharmD research pathway.

As an assistant professor, she developed the annual “Spring into Maryland Science” event with NSF funding to provide research experiences to students from groups underrepresented in science. As director of UMSOP’s PhD in PSC program, she was instrumental in partnering with the University of Maryland, Baltimore County’s Meyerhoff Scholars program, which in 2022 led to the successful application for an NIH Initiative for Maximizing Student Development T32 grant to train students from groups underrepresented in health-related sciences.

Dr. Michel served as president of the University of Maryland, Baltimore (UMB) Faculty Senate from 2015 to 2017, working with colleagues in the Staff Senate and Graduate Student Association, as well as UMB leadership, on the UMB Shared Governance Statement. She also testified in the Maryland General Assembly on behalf of UMB faculty on legislation that led to the formation of the MPowering the State collaboration with the University of Maryland, College Park. She received a bachelor’s degree in chemistry from Cornell University and a PhD in chemistry from Northwestern University and completed an NIH National Research Service Award postdoctoral fellowship at Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine.

I want to thank those who participated in our national search, especially the search committee chaired by Judy L. Postmus, PhD, ACSW, dean and professor, University of Maryland School of Social Work, and vice-chaired by James E. Polli, PhD, the Ralph F. Shangraw/Noxell Endowed Professor in Industrial Pharmacy and Pharmaceutics, UMSOP, as well as everyone else who met with the candidates and provided meaningful input and feedback about the candidates and the search process.

I know that you will join me in congratulating Dr. Michel and supporting her in the position.


Bruce E. Jarrell, MD, FACS