Dr. Gretchen Mielke

Gretchen Mielke is a higher education executive and civic scholar with over 14 years of experience leading university-wide priorities including building local-to-global community partnerships, promoting access to education, designing and implementing service scholarship programs, and executing sequential developmental pathways for students’ personal, professional and leadership growth.

Currently, Gretchen serves as the Executive Director of The Philadelphia Center, an experiential learning, social change incubator and study away campus of Albion College. The Philadelphia Center has been operating since 1967, trailblazing an experiential education that grounds students’ professional pursuit with real world application, using Philadelphia as the background to activate one’s entrepreneurial spirit and social activism.

Prior to this role, Gretchen served as the assistant dean for civic engagement at Widener University in Chester, Pennsylvania, where she led the university’s civic initiatives including: cultivating and sustaining meaningful, reciprocal partnerships with community organizations, supporting faculty’s experiential efforts including service-learning, community-based research and political engagement, designing and overseeing cohort scholarship students and leading ongoing civic evaluation efforts.

A Fulbright grantee in South Korea, Gretchen’s previous appointments and positions include serving as the program coordinator for American University’s Office of the Provost and manager of its Academic Living Learning Community Assessment, assistant director of academic community engagement and global partnership consultant at Siena College, and program associate at the Bonner Foundation of Princeton, N.J.

Gretchen is a graduate of Dickinson College (BA), American University (MA) and a current doctoral candidate at Widener University. She resides in Pennsylvania with her husband and their two young sons.