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Dr. Donna Kuga

After more than 30 years of working at Penn State Beaver, Donna Kuga has many favorite moments, from winning volleyball championships when she was a coach to having a scholarship named after her to seeing former students return to campus to tell of their success.

“You enjoy what you do, and before you know it, 20 to 30 years have passed,” she said.

After growing up just a few miles from campus, Kuga decided to attend Penn State Beaver as a student “because of the size and the upward movement to University Park,” she said.

While a student here, she was both a commuter and a resident and understands why students would want to live on campus even though their own home isn’t far away. Kuga spent her sophomore year living in the dorms.

Kuga earned a degree in health and physical education at Penn State, and once she had her degree in hand, she became the women’s volleyball coach at Penn State Beaver. She had heard about the job from her Penn State Beaver mentor, an example of why it’s great to go to a small campus, she said.

Kuga soon became a full-time faculty member and spent the next 18 years as a professor teaching health and physical education classes and enjoying the opportunity to interact with the students. 

For the past 12 years Kuga has served as the director of academic affairs. As an administrator, she works with faculty members to help them offer the best academic programs possible. “It’s nice that I wasn’t teaching forever,” she said, referring to her many positions on campus. “Having different jobs keeps things new.”

Kuga’s main goals for the future are to ensure that majors offered at Penn State Beaver are of the highest quality, to provide a positive experience for students, and to provide academic services that are helpful to students. “In terms of 2+2, I want to ensure that our students who are going to transfer have a solid strong academic experience here,” she said.


Administration and Policy Studies in Higher Education, University of Pittsburgh

Master’s Degree
Administration of Physical Education and Athletics, Slippery Rock University

Bachelor’s Degree
Health and Physical Education, Penn State

Women’s attitudes and motivation in athletics
Athletic participation and self-image
Teaching and coaching methods and evaluations
Intramural sports programming for women
Physical activity in multicultural college students