Congratulations to Winners of External Grants!

In my March newsletter, I recognized several faculty and staff members who had recently won external grants, fellowships, or contracts.  Since then, we’ve had additional good news on the external funding front and I’d like to congratulate Norah Hooper, Michael Spencer, Venitta McCall, Theresa Grana, H. Nicole Myers, Julius Esunge, Patricia Reynolds, Rita Thompson, and Janet Asper for their achievements.

Norah Hooper, Department of Foundations, Leadership, and Special Populations, was awarded $75,000 from the Virginia Department of Education for the Traineeship for Special Education Personnel for Region III. Her colleague H. Nicole Myers received $20,000 from the KOVAR Foundation to support the development of the autism play lab. Patricia Reynolds (also in the same department) received a grant of $65,124 from the Virginia Department of Education for a project on differentiated instruction across the curriculum for English language learners.  Finally, Venitta McCall, just learned that she and her colleagues, Courtney Clayton and Jennifer Jakubecy, will be receiving  $32,045 from the Virginia Department of Education Division of Teacher Education and Licensure to implement a clinical faculty training program.

Four external grants awarded to the same department in a very short time period!  That’s quite an outstanding set of achievements.

Some organizations make funds available for new faculty, and two junior faculty recently received such awards.  Theresa Grana, Department of Biology, was awarded a Teaching Faculty Grant from the Society for Developmental Biology to support her participation in their 3rd annual “boot camp” for new faculty, held at the University of New Mexico, Albuquerque, NM. The Boot Camp is designed for untenured faculty in their first academic position who are interested in improving their leadership skills and learning about teaching and mentoring. Julius Esunge, Department of Mathematics, was accepted as a Project NExT fellow, which is a professional development program sponsored by the Mathematics Association of America for new or recent Ph.D.s in the mathematical sciences. The program addresses all aspects of an academic career and provides the participants with a network of peers and mentors.

Michael Spencer of the Department of Historic Preservation was awarded a $14,500 contract with the National Park Service and the Shenandoah Valley Battlefield Trust to conduct a forensic analysis of the C.I. Hite (Whitham) farmhouse and bank barn.  Alan Griffith, of the Department of Biology, just received word that his subcontract with Hampshire College, as part of a National Science Foundation grant, has been awarded.  The two-year subcontract for $18,466 is in connection with a project titled “Collaborative Research: Improving General Biology Teaching with Diagnostic Question Clusters and Active Learning.”

Rita Thompson in the Office of Admissions coordinated a successful application to the Jessie Ball duPont Fund for support for the Rappahannock Scholars Program (RSP).  The RSP provides mentoring for 50-60 students in grades 9-12 in six high schools in the Northern Neck region of Virginia, providing students with opportunities to successfully complete high school and prepare for college.  The duPont Fund awarded $150,000 (over a two year period) for this project.

Finally, Janet Asper deserves recognition for completingwhat turned out to be a sixteen month project to bring a Nuclear Magnetic Resonance spectrometer (NMR) to the Jepson Science Center. This was a collaborative project with a group from the Naval Surface Warfare Center (Dahlgren) in which UMW provided the space in exchange for an arrangement in which the NMR would be essentially on long-term loan to UMW.

If you have an interest in applying for these grants or for external funding of any kind (grants, contracts, and so forth), please make sure you submit your proposal for the required UMW internal review before you make an application to the funding agency.  All proposals by UMW faculty or staff for any external funding (regardless of the funding source) follow the same internal review procedures.

Associate Provost John Morello serves as the point of contact for persons interested in submitting external grant proposals. In cases where the application will go to a private funding source (a foundation, corporation, or the like), John Morello will coordinate with Donna Mejia, director of leadership gifts in the Office of University Advancement.  As reported in President Rick Hurley’s recent “welcome back” newsletter, Donna is assuming additional responsibility for corporate and foundation relations. Grant requests to private sources still need to proceed through the UMW external grants pre-approval process before they are submitted, even if the UMW Foundation will ultimately be responsible for submitting the proposal to the potential funding source. For full details about submitting an external grant proposal for internal review, go to the external grants web page.

The list of awards on the web page represents all the awards that have been made known to my office through the UMW internal process for approving external grant and contract applications before they are submitted.  If there’s an awarded project missing from this list, please call it to my attention.  We’d like to recognize your accomplishments.

Congratulations to everyone! This is an impressive showing, and I hope all of these projects turn out to be successful and rewarding experiences.

Leave a Reply