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Graduate School
Graduate School

Graduate Council

EDUCATIONAL AND RESEARCH POLICIES COMMITTEE

Minutes of

February 12th, 2008

MEMBERS PRESENT: Marcus Agustin, Chair, David Duvernell, Christa Johnson, Nancy Lutz, Saiprakash Putti, Ena Rose-Green, Cindy Schmidt, G. Stacey Staples, Morris Taylor, Erin Timpe, Jianpeng Zhou

MEMBERS ABSENT: Melissa Bergstrom

I. Announcements

There were no announcements.

II. Minutes of December 13th, 2007

David Duvernell made a motion to approve the minutes; Jianpeng Zhou seconded. The motion passed unanimously.

III. Update on Proposal to Create a Research Seminar for Graduate Students

The Graduate School proposed exploring the possibility of creating a "university-wide research seminar" to address the need for awareness of research issues among graduate students. A subcommittee consisting of Marcus Agustin, David Duvernell, Christa Johnson, and Cindy Schmidt met with Acting Dean Regina McBride and other librarians regarding how the librarians would like to teach the course. Topics discussed included the RCR topics, faculty credit, and whether or not the instructors would need graduate faculty status to teach the course. They proposed Lydia Jackson as the instructor. The subcommittee will present a report to the ERP meeting on March 18th. If accepted, the ERP will present the findings to the Graduate Council on April 4th.

IV. Review of Graduate School Faculty Funding Programs

Christa Johnson presented an overview of the internal funding programs offered by the Graduate School. They are:

1. Funding for New Faculty (FIRST) Deadlines: Any time up to December 1.

Available funds: $1,500 per award. Purpose: Provides $1,500 for new faculty members on a tenure track appointment to support research. Funds received after attending FIRST program.

2. Summer Research Fellowships (SRF) Deadline: September 21.

Available funds: $195,000. Purpose: Provides up to 24 $8,000 and 14 $4,000 awards.

3. Funded University Research (FUR) Deadline: February 1 to Graduate School.

Available funds: $100,000. Purpose: Provides course release time, graduate assistantships, and small awards to support research during the academic year.

4. Paul Simon Outstanding Scholar Award Deadline: February 15 to the Graduate School.

Available funds: $5,000. Purpose: Provides an award to recognize the role of research and creative activities in achieving excellence in teaching.

5. Hoppe Research Professor Award Deadline: March 17 to School or College Research Committee. Available funds: 50% assigned time for research, 25% graduate assistant, and $1,000 in support lines. Purpose: Supports individual programs of research and/or creative activities.

6. Travel to Disseminate Research Applications may be submitted any time prior to the actual travel. Provides matching funds to present papers at professional conferences.

7. Page Costs/Reprints Requests may be submitted at any time for publications expenses such as page costs or reprint charges.

8. Lindsay New Investigator Award Deadline: March 31.

Available funds: $12,500 per award. Purpose: Provides funding for a one-year period during the regular academic year to support research.

9. Equipment and Tools Deadline: March 3 (every 3 yrs.)

Available Funds: $100,000 Purpose: For the purchase of research equipment and tools.

10. Multidisciplinary Research Teams Deadline: March 14 (every 3 yrs).

Available Funds: $25,000 Purpose: To support the formation of multidisciplinary teams to conduct preliminary research.

11. Assigned Time for Research Deadline: March 28 (every 3 yrs).

Purpose: Up to two units of assigned time for research to support research projects during the academic year.

12. Seed Money for Proposal Development Requests may be submitted at any time.

Provides up to $2,000 to develop proposals for external funding.

13. Distinguished Research Professor Award Deadline: January 15.

Purpose: The SIUE Distinguished Research Professor is an academic rank awarded to SIUE faculty members in order to recognize outstanding and sustained contributions to research and creative activities.

Johnson asked the committee to discuss whether or not the programs listed above are meeting the needs of faculty. She also asked the committee to consider combining some of the programs. In particular, she proposed the combination of the SRF and FUR programs. A combined program would be more equitable, since faculty on twelve month appointments are not eligible for the separate SRF program. A combined program, Johnson continued, would allow faculty to apply for any combination of line items, including summer salary, depending on their needs. Everyone would be equally eligible to apply for the same maximum amount to support their research projects.

Nancy Lutz asked the purpose of a separate assigned time for research competition since that benefit is included in the FUR awards. Johnson replied that the new programs were implemented in response to an immediate need to invest in research infrastructure; according to recent feedback from faculty, the need is concentrated in three areas offered through the new programs. Eventually, Johnson stated, the three new programs could be included in the combined FUR/SRF competition. David Duvernell suggested that if we combine several programs into one, it should be offered multiple times per year. Johnson stated that she wished to cut down on the deadlines and this approach would help streamline the programs and the deadlines. Nancy Lutz mentioned that the timing of the SRF is good because it provides immediate funding for the upcoming summer months. She added that the FUR money is for the next academic year. She wondered whether the program could offer funding from May to May instead of by fiscal year to help faculty cover the summer months.

Jianpeng Zhou felt that the current structure of the competitions cuts research into pieces, tools, time, etc., therefore he would support combining some of them.

Johnson stated that the Graduate School could structure the SRF and FUR combined competition like external grant submissions, and provide a mechanism for reviewing and funding linked proposals in order to support research teams.

Cindy Schmidt expressed concern with having one pot of money available once per year. Nancy Lutz proposed a second competition in the spring for seed money. The committee continued to discuss the structure and incentives for all other programs, including the Lindsay, Hoppe, and Paul Simon award programs. . The committee also discussed the prospect of double-dipping by receiving more than one award for the same work.

Lutz suggested moving the Hoppe deadline to fall and keeping the Lindsay award in the spring with the Baich award being a part of the Lindsay New Investigator Award.

Marcus Agustin expressed the hope that if the Graduate School received another endowment that the benefactor should be encouraged to put it in the humanities to balance the Baich award. Agustin questioned whether the Graduate School could "roll over money from Fall to Spring" since some of the available funds were State funds. Johnson replied that offering the program twice per year would allow the Graduate School to front-load spending State dollars on the first round of proposals to alleviate those concerns.

David Duvernell suggested that the ceiling of a combined competition could be $18,000 with limited categories.

Marcus Agustin asked Christa Johnson to bring an accounting to the next meeting on Tuesday, March 18th for all the programs and a list of any restrictions imposed by the named programs

V. Old Business

There was no old business.

VI. New Business

There was no new business.

VII. Adjournment

The meeting adjourned at 12:10 PM.

Respectfully submitted,

Stephen L. Hansen
Associate Provost for Research and
Dean, Graduate School

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