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Coast Guard Academy Welcomes First Provost

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U.S. Coast Guard Academy
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Coast Guard Academy Welcomes First Provost

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NEW LONDON, Conn. — Prior to the start of the fall semester, the U.S. Coast Guard Academy installed Amy Donahue, Ph.D. as the institution’s first Provost. In this position, Donahue will serve as the principal adviser to the Superintendent in all matters relating to the academic program and faculty.

Donahue is a graduate of Princeton University (B.A.) and Syracuse University (M.P.A, Ph.D.). She served as an Army officer immediately following graduation from Princeton University, commanding Army soldiers and personnel as the officer-in-charge of a forward surgical team that trained, staffed, and equipped a medical team for global deployment. Her previous public service also includes a temporary appointment to the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) where she identified opportunities to deploy NASA’s technology to support the efforts of other federal agencies.

Her academic experience includes serving as a professor of Public Policy at the University of Connecticut and Vice Provost for Academic Operations at the University of Connecticut. In addition, she has served as a technical advisor to the Department of Homeland Security on an array of projects helping to meet the technological needs of emergency responders.

Donahue will replace Dean of Academics, retired Coast Guard Capt. Kurt Colella, a 1981 graduate of the Academy. While at the Academy, Colella taught 26 different courses within four different departments and served as Chief of the Naval Architecture and Marine Engineering section from 1997 to 2006.

Colella earned M.S. degrees in Mechanical Engineering and Naval Architecture and Marine Engineering from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, and later earned his Ph.D. in Mechanical Engineering from the University of Connecticut.

In 2006, Colella was selected to be the Academy’s Dean of Academics and has been integral to the development of the Academy as an intellectual resource for the Coast Guard, Department of Homeland Security and beyond. Since his selection, the Academy has developed centers of excellence, revised the core curriculum, implemented the Cyber Systems major, and deepened both governmental and non-governmental partnerships. In recognition of his contributions to the Academy, Colella received the DHS Distinguished Service Medal upon retirement.

“We are forever grateful for the lifetime of service that Dean Colella has dedicated to both the Coast Guard and its Academy,” said Rear Adm. Bill Kelly, superintendent of the Coast Guard Academy. “Provost Donahue brings a wealth of leadership and academic experience to the Academy and we look forward to her leadership, passion and dedication as we continue to move forward together.”

Founded in 1876, the Coast Guard Academy is one of the five U.S. service academies and ranks among the nation’s most prestigious and selective institutions of higher learning. For more information, visit



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