Jacqueline Moloney was inaugurated Thursday at the Tsongas Center. Photo by Wendy Maeda/Globe Staff

Jacqueline Moloney was inaugurated Thursday at the Tsongas Center.

Boston Globe

Jacqueline Moloney, a longtime University of Massachusetts Lowell administrator, was inaugurated Thursday as the first female chancellor in the college’s 121-year history.

More than 1,000 members of the college community celebrated the milestone at the Tsongas Center, the college said.

“What makes this university so special?’’ Moloney asked, according to remarks provided by UMass Lowell. “Put simply, it is all of you: our inspiring students, our brilliant faculty and committed staff, our devoted alumni, our dedicated civic and business leaders, and our community of friends and family.”

Moloney’s predecessor, Martin Meehan, now president of the University of Massachusetts system, praised Moloney as a “visionary leader.” She had served as Meehan’s second-in-command on the Lowell campus.

“You will lead this institution to even greater heights,” Meehan said at the ceremony.

Events tied to the inauguration raised $1.5 million for student scholarships, the school said.

The appointment of Moloney, 62, is the culmination of her three decades at the college, most recently as executive vice chancellor. In that role, she has led UMass Lowell’s long-term master plan and pioneered its online education program. She will be paid a base salary of $373,359 in her current role.

She is also a tenured faculty member in the campus’s graduate school of education and has served as dean of its online and continuing education program.

In recent years, the campus has boosted enrollment and selectivity, raised record amounts of money, and added several buildings.