About the President
Since becoming the University’s chief executive in 2016, President Nicklow has built significant momentum and achieved impressive outcomes related to his three priority areas: enrollment growth, strengthening research and increasing external partnerships. He has also woven the core values of diversity, equity and inclusion into each of these areas.
President Nicklow has helped lead three straight years of enrollment growth, something that had not happened at the University in 15 years. Enrollment increases for new first-year students, new African American students and new Hispanic students have been significant. Under President Nicklow’s leadership, the University has established new programs and agreements to reduce financial barriers and increase accessibility for students from the New Orleans region. With a clear focus on student success and support, the institution has markedly improved its student retention rates and graduation rates in recent years.
President Nicklow has prioritized research growth as part of the University’s strategic plan and its mission as a Carnegie R2 Doctoral Institution. The institution innovates on ways to support grant productivity, partnerships that enhance economic development and student engagement in research. In recent years, the University has significantly increased external grant and contract awards, and research expenditures.
During President Nicklow’s tenure, the University has reinvigorated its fundraising and alumni engagement activities, deepening connections with the 47,000 alumni in greater New Orleans and the 75,000 alumni worldwide. Through events like the Homer Hitt Distinguished Alumni Gala, the UNO Hall of Distinction Gala and the UNO 25 Celebration Luncheon, the institution has generated renewed pride among its alumni and raised substantial funds to support student scholarships and campus improvements.
President Nicklow has also launched a series of initiatives across campus intended to make the University a more welcoming and inclusive environment for students and employees. In 2021, he was named a NCAA Champion of Diversity.
President Nicklow has spent more than two decades in higher education as a faculty member and administrator with extensive experience in research, enrollment management, student success initiatives, fundraising, campus-wide collaborations and academic program innovation. Prior to his ascent to the presidency, he served as the University’s Provost and Vice President for Academic Affairs for nine months. He previously held the position of Provost and Vice Chancellor for Academic Affairs at Southern Illinois University, as well as earlier appointments as Assistant Provost for Enrollment Management, Associate Dean of Engineering, and Professor of Civil Engineering at that institution.
President Nicklow has been widely recognized at the university level by the American Society of Civil Engineers and by industry for his teaching and research. He currently holds the rank of Professor in the Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering and holds an Endowed Chair in Environmental Modeling. His research interests are focused on STEM education and on environmental and water resources systems optimization. He has published more than 75 articles and is the author of four books.
He is a registered professional engineer, a certified professional hydrologist, a fellow of the American Society of Civil Engineers, and a diplomate of the American Academy of Water Resources Engineers.
President Nicklow earned B.S. and M.S. degrees in Civil Engineering from Bucknell University in Lewisburg, Pennsylvania and a Ph.D., in Civil Engineering from Arizona State University. He began his career as an Environmental Engineering Officer with the U.S. Public Health Service and was responsible for design and construction of water supply and waste disposal facilities for American Indian communities.
President Nicklow is a native of Berlin, Pennsylvania. He is married with one son.