Skip to navigation Skip to content Skip to footer

Carnegie Mellon Names Rebecca Nugent Faculty Athletics Representative

Carnegie Mellon Names Rebecca Nugent Faculty Athletics Representative

(PITTSBURGH, Pa.) – Carnegie Mellon University Director of Athletics Josh Centor recently announced Rebecca Nugent as the department’s NCAA Faculty Athletics Representative (FAR), beginning at the start of the 2021-22 academic year. Nugent, recently named head of the Department of Statistics & Data Science, replaces Susan Polansky who served as FAR for the past five years.

“We have an incredible tradition of Faculty Athletics Representatives at Carnegie Mellon, and Rebecca will be another outstanding leader within the athletics community,” said Director of Athletics Josh Centor. “Rebecca was a student-athlete, served as a coach and has been highly involved with our intercollegiate athletics program over the years. She is a well-respected academic department head and global leader in her field, and we are thrilled to have her join the Tartans in this capacity.”

Nugent has served as associate department head of statistics since 2017 and director or co-director of undergraduate studies since 2016. She is the founding director of the department's Corporate Capstone Program, an experiential learning initiative that matches groups of faculty and students with data science research problems in corporate, nonprofit and government organizations. She is also one of the founding members of the Carnegie Mellon Sports Analytics Cluster, an initiative that supports sports-related research and educational projects at both the undergraduate and graduate levels.

The former two-sport Rice University student-athlete received her undergraduate degree in mathematics, statistics, and Spanish before earning a master’s in statistics from Stanford University and then her Ph.D. in statistics from the University of Washington. Nugent is a longtime supporter of the athletics department and served as the head coach of the club women’s ultimate frisbee team for ten years.

“I am thrilled to be able to support and represent our stellar student-athletes and Athletics Department as the Carnegie Mellon FAR,” said Nugent. “Our programs continue to draw students with incredible academic and athletic talent from around the world, supported by top-notch coaches and administration. In my time at CMU, I have continually been impressed with the character of our varsity and club athletes, both in and out of the classroom. Couldn’t be more Tartan Proud!”

Polansky served as FAR for the last four years and was a proud supporter of the Tartan programs throughout her tenure.

“Susan was a remarkable representative for our program and took tremendous pride in the accomplishments of our student-athletes,” Centor said. “I know she will continue to be involved with the Tartans, and I look forward to watching many more games with her in the years to come.”

The FAR is a member of the faculty at an NCAA member institution. He or she has been designated by the institution to serve as a liaison between the institution and the athletics department, and also as a representative of the institution in conference and NCAA affairs. Each institution determines the role of the FAR at that particular institution.

The role of the FAR is to ensure that the academic institution establishes and maintains the appropriate balance between academics and intercollegiate athletics.