Dr. Shaily Menon’s administrative, teaching, and research careers have been fueled by her conviction in the value of a liberal education for students and for society. She is committed to the ideas of an engaged university, collaborative and interdisciplinary problem-solving, fostering innovation and entrepreneurship, advancing underrepresented groups, and translating her passion for helping institutions of higher education respond to the needs of their students and of local and global communities.
Dr. Menon’s teaching and research have been in the areas of environmental ethics, conservation biology, global change, systems dynamics, and spatial modeling. She has worked on collaborative and interdisciplinary research on global change (land-use change, sea-level rise, and climate change) with students, faculty, and non-profit organizations locally and internationally.
At Grand Valley State University, Dr. Menon serves as Associate Dean for Research, Facilities Planning, and Community Engagement in the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences. She spent 2015-16 as an ACE Fellow in the President’s Office at San Francisco State University. Since her return, she has two special project assignments in the Office of the Provost at GVSU on Community Engagement and Design Thinking for Social Innovation. She is a member of the organizing committee of a MI-ACE Senior Leadership Program for mid-level administrators in higher education, and serves on the HLC Assurance Argument Leadership Committee preparing the report for a 2018 accreditation visit.
Previously, her responsibilities as Associate Dean included Faculty and Staff Development, and Strategic Planning, Assessment, and Accreditation. She is a Professor of Biology and Natural Resources Management, and served for six years as Chair of the Department of Biology. At GVSU, she has served as an inclusion advocate, co-director of an NSF project to mentor and support STEM majors, mentor to unit heads, trained mediator, and member of the University Strategic Positioning Task Force. She has served on the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences Dean’s Search Committee, GVSU Presidential Search Advisory Committee, and the Claiming a Liberal Education Advisory Committee. She was co-director of an NSF-funded ADVANCE project, and chaired a University Referendum Task Force.
In the community, Dr. Menon serves on the Gender Committee of the Council for Colleges of Arts and Sciences (CCAS), co-chairs a diversity Initiative in Northwest Ottawa County called Lakeshore Ethnic Diversity Alliance-North (LEDA-North), and serves on the Board of Trustees, Investment Committee, Biological Field Station Advisory Board, and Inclusion and Diversity Committee at Pierce Cedar Creek Institute, a non-profit organization for environmental education. She facilitated a strategic visioning retreat at Harvey Mudd College. She also writes creative fiction and non-fiction.