Congratulations to UMW External Grant and Contract Winners and Applicants!

UMW faculty and staff are continuing to submit external grant and contract proposals and to achieve success. Since August 15, 2015, twenty applications for external funding have been processed through the Provost’s Office. And six current full-time faculty members, one administrative/professional faculty member, one adjunct faculty member, and one new faculty member who will join us in August have been awarded a total of eight separate grants and/or contracts. Congratulations to everyone who applied and to those who received awards! Keep reading to see the list of all successes and applications.

In January, Brian Rizzo, (Department of Geography and Director of CeSAR) was awarded a $4,000 grant from the International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies to develop a series of maps and charts to visualize data related to the delivery of malaria nets in Africa.

In February, Mike Lapke (College of Business) learned that he was awarded an eight-month research fellowship with the University of Jyväskylä in Jyväskylä, Finland to work with one of the top Information Systems Security researchers on a new Action Research project.

In March, Cassandra Good (James Monroe Papers) learned that she was awarded a two-week ($1,000) Virginia Historical Society research fellowship in support of her book project on George Washington’s Descendants and the Politics of Family.

Also in March, Jeff McClurken (Special Assistant to the Provost for Technology, Teaching, and Innovation and Department of History and American Studies) finalized details on a sub-contract between UMW and COPLAC (the Council of Public Liberal Arts Colleges); COPLAC received an Andrew Mellon Foundation $540,000 grant to enable a consortium of 29 public liberal arts institutions to expand multi-campus, distance and team-taught digital liberal arts research seminars. UMW’s three-year sub-contract is in the vicinity of $70,000.

In April, Steven Harris (Department of History and American Studies) learned that he was awarded the National Air and Space Museum’s Verville Fellowship for academic year 2016-2017 in support of his book project Wings of the Motherland. The fellowship provides a $55,000 stipend plus $5,000 in research expenses.

Also in April, Leanna Giancarlo and Kelli Slunt (Department of Chemistry) successfully negotiated a $40,000 contract with the American Chemical Society to host the Society’s 2016 U.S. National Chemistry Olympiad study camp, an intensive 15-day activity for twenty outstanding high school chemistry students selected from around the country.

And in another April success, Scott Jones (Director of the UMW Dahlgren Campus Center for Education and Research) successfully completed arrangements on a $10,500 contract between UMW and the Joint Warfare Analysis Center (JWAC) to offer a special section of calculus (MATH 121) at the Dahlgren Campus for a group of JWAC workers. Randall Helmstutler (Department of Mathematics) will teach the course during the May/June summer session.

Just today, we learned that Laura McMillan (Adjunct Instructor in the Department of Historic Preservation) received a small grant ($498.65) from the Council of Virginia Archaeologists to support genealogical research that is part of a project that involves conducting oral history interviews related to the Center for Historic Preservation’s Sherwood Forest Project;

Finally, a soon to be new colleague in Geography, Marcos Millones Mayer, will be bringing in a $17,500 sub-contract awarded by the University of California, Santa Barbara for a project titled “Expanding the Reach of MERL.” UMW will be part of a consortium on this project, which is being funded by a grant from the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID). It’s definitely unique for a new faculty member to be bringing in external funding right at the start.

These are terrific accomplishments, and great news for UMW.

Since the August 2015 Newsletter, the following persons have submitted grant or contract proposals. (These projects are in addition to some of the ones listed above that were submitted this year and have been funded.) Developing and submitting proposals takes significant time and effort; it’s important that those efforts be recognized.

*Allyson Poska (Department of History and American Studies) submitted four proposals for fellowships in support of her project on “The First Global Health Initiative” she sent proposals to the Guggenheim Foundation, the American Council of Learned Societies, the Institute for Advanced Studies, and to the National Institutes of Health;

*Steven Harris ((Department of History and American Studies) submitted two proposals – one for a National Endowment for the Humanities summer stipend and the other for a National Air and Space Museum writers grant (both relating to his project, Wings of the Motherland;

*Janet Asper (Department of Chemistry) submitted a $184,332 proposal to the Office of Naval Research for a project on “Research and Development of an Oil-Absorbing Polymeric Material”;

*George Meadows (College of Education) submitted a $13,500 proposal to the Virginia Division of Legislative Services for a project on “Design Briefs and Makerspaces in Environmental Education”;

*Ping Yin (Department of Geography) submitted a proposal to the Health Resources and Services Administration (a division of the of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services) for a project on “Using GIS to Analyze Spatial Accessibility and Utilization of Prenatal Care”;

*Mary Kayler (Center for Teaching Excellence and Innovation) submitted a $355,502 proposal on to the Aspen Institute/Stevens Virtual Exchange Initiative on “East-West Youth Convergence for a Better World: An Open Web Empowerment Approach for Bridging Cultural Understandings around Community Service”;

*Mary Kayler also submitted a $331,003 proposal to the National Science Foundation on “Multimedia Online Learning Experiences: Shifting the Learning paradigm through Game Theory, Writing Pedagogy, Digital Literacies, and E-portfolio Development”;

*Marjorie Och (Department of Art and Art History) submitted a proposal to Richmond, the American International University in London, for a project on “A Comparative Study of Museum Studies Programs”;

*Hai Nguyen (Department of Physics) submitted a $100,000 proposal to the Jeffress Trust in Interdisciplinary Research to support his project “Quantitative Efficiency Analysis of a Single Optically Trapped Upconverting Nanoparticle”;

*Debra Hydorn (Department of Mathematics) submitted a $155,050 pre-proposal to the Office of Naval Research to develop a “UMW NSWC-Dahlgren Collaborative STEM Workforce Development Program”;

*Avina Ross (Office of Title IX Sexual Assault and Prevention Specialist) submitted a proposal to the Office of Violence Against Women’s program of Grants to Reduce Sexual Assault, Domestic Violence, Dating Violence, and Stalking on Campus;

*Parrish Waters (Department of Biological Sciences) and Dave Stahlman (Department of Psychological Science) collaborated on a “pre-proposal” submitted to the National Science Foundation for a project to investigate the relationship between voluntary wheel running and social rank in laboratory mice;

*Leah Cox (Special Assistant to the President of Diversity and Inclusion) arranged for UMW to partner with Futures Without Violence on their application for funding from the College Sexual Assault Policy and Prevention Initiative (a grant program being offered by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services);

*Nora Kim (Department of Sociology and Anthropology) submitted a $20,000 Academy of Korean Studies Grant to support a research project on the micro-sociology of the Bureau of Immigration Field Officials;

*Suzanne Sumner (Department of Mathematics) is once again collaborating with the Caroline County Public Schools on their proposal for a U.S. Department of Education 21st Century Community Learning Centers Grant that will focus on Science, Technology, Engineering, Arts and Mathematics (STEAM). UMW will provide student- interns to assist with the STEAM afterschool and summer program.


*Kimberly Urban (Adjunct Instructor in the Department of Sociology and Anthropology) is in the process of finalizing details on a subcontract proposal to George Mason University to contribute to a project on Crowdsourcing Evidence, Argumentation, Thinking and Evaluation” (for a federal grant proposal to be submitted to the Office of Anticipating Surprise).

Congratulations again to everyone for their individual efforts in developing an application!  The competition for external funding is usually fierce. For those individuals who are still waiting to learn if their projects will be funded, we wish them good luck with their applications as they await final decisions from funding entities.

The location of the materials relevant to applying for external grants is available at:  Or from the main page at the Provost’s web site, just look for the heading titled “Grants and Research.”

The list of awards at the web page includes all the awards the Provost’s Office knows about. Usually, we find out that an award was made by following a proposal that was developed and submitted through the process for approving external grant and contract applications before submission. Occasionally grant applications get submitted outside the official approval process, which means that we may have missed an award on our list of awarded grants because we had no prior knowledge of the proposal.  We strongly encourage everyone to work with the Office of the Provost in developing and submitting your grant applications.

If there’s an awarded project missing from this list, please contact the Office of the Provost.  We’d like to recognize your accomplishments.



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