BETHANY, W.Va. – As the fall semester draws to a close, Bethany College is announcing the appointment of Dr. Joseph Petrella as chair of the Education Department. With an extensive background in educational leadership, Petrella joins Bethany after holding esteemed positions such as associate provost for instruction and assessment at Rockford University, superintendent of schools and curriculum coordinator in Wilkinsburg, Pa., and multiple other superintendent positions in Pa. and Ill., respectively.

Petrella established an education-based business, formally known as Petrella Education Group, LLC, and continues to serve as its executive consultant. He focuses on ideals that support the strategic vision of “thriving vs. surviving,” of which he also plans to incorporate at Bethany.

“I am honored to embark on this journey in the institution’s history as Bethany begins to assess the opportunities that exist within the Education Department. It has been a pleasure working with the existing faculty and the outgoing chair, Dr. Charline Rowland, over the last few weeks. I know that I will be joining a team that is truly dedicated to meeting the needs of the students,” says Petrella.

Bethany President Dr. Jamie Caridi shares his excitement for the future of the Education Department under Petrella’s leadership.

“I am pleased with the continual strides Bethany College is taking to recruit extraordinary faculty. We are fortunate to have in Dr. Petrella an experienced academician, an astute administrator, and a respected educator who is held in high regard by his peers. His background and knowledge of accreditation and teacher preparation position Bethany College well to form exceptional teachers who are so critically needed in the school systems throughout our region,” says Caridi.

Petrella earned his Bachelor of Science in political science and public administration from Saint Vincent College. He also received two master’s degrees from the University of Pittsburgh, one in instruction & learning and the other in educational administration, and most recently a doctorate in administration & policy studies, also from the University of Pittsburgh.

“Dr. Petrella’s experience in the field of education and assessment will help provide leadership to an important program for Bethany. His leadership as the chair of the Education Department during this period of transition will enable us to position the programs to meet the needs of our students and our community,” says Provost and Dean of Faculty Dr. Anju Ramjee.