Laurie Leshin, PHD

Laurie Leshin became the 16th President of Worcester Polytechnic Institute (WPI) in June of 2014. As President, she is committed to elevating WPI’s impact in communities worldwide. 

Prior to joining WPI, Laurie served as the Dean of the School of Science at Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute in New York. There, she expanded and strengthened interdisciplinary scientific research and education, championed diversity in STEM, and significantly expanded fundraising and outreach initiatives. While at Rensselaer, Laurie continued her work as a scientist for the Mars Curiosity Rover mission and was appointed by President Obama to the Advisory Board for the Smithsonian National Air and Space Museum.

Prior to joining Rensselaer, Laurie served as the Deputy Director of NASA’s Exploration Systems Mission Directorate, where she was responsible for oversight of NASA’s future human spaceflight programs and activities. She also worked as the Director of Science and Exploration at NASA’s Goddard Space Flight Center. Before joining NASA, Laurie was the Dee and John Whiteman Dean’s Distinguished Professor of Geological Sciences at Arizona State University. While at ASU, Laurie was appointed by President Bush to serve on the Commission for the Implementation of United States Space Exploration Policy, which called for a transformation in the nation’s approach to space exploration.