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K-State Today Student Edition

December 12, 2012



Faculty research programs and students benefit from academic excellence awards with funding for equipment, lecture support and more

By April Mason

With an eye toward moving the university closer to fulfilling its institutional aspiration of becoming a Top 50 public research institution, award decisions from the academic excellence fund were recently announced. 

The fund combines resources from the offices of the president and provost. Faculty have two opportunities during the academic year to propose projects for funding. Following review of 61 submitted proposals received during the fall award period, the university has selected the following for funding:

  • Mike Haddock, K-State Libraries, subvention support to match the contribution of the University of Kansas to publish "Kansas Wildflowers and Weeds," a collaborative project with two KU colleagues;
  • Susanne Siepl-Coates, architecture, in partial support for 13 students to observe two multigenerational housing projects constructed in Zurich, Switzerland to inform their individual design programs;
  • Michael Young, psychology, to support travel for four undergraduate students to present their work at scientific conferences;
  • Stuart Warren, horticulture, forestry and recreation resources, to create a video conferencing classroom to facilitate distance instruction;
  • Kimberly Kirkpatrick, psychology, match for the purchase and installation of a surgical microscope;
  • Joe Sutliff Sanders, Dorothy Thompson Civil Rights Lecture Series chair, to provide honoraria and travel for lecturers;
  • Joshua Oppenheim and Julia Yu-Oppenheim, School of Music, Theatre, and Dance, for equipment and travel for the women’s choir and the student ensemble In-A-Chord;
  • Jon Hunt, landscape architecture/regional and community planning, to purchase an etching press and work tables of the College of Architecture, Planning and Design print shop;
  • Katie Heinrich, kinesiology, to purchase equipment for exercise research in the Functional Intensity Training Lab;
  • Bruce Snead, engineering extension programs, to convert a conference room into a distance learning delivery facility;
  • Salvador Oropesa, modern languages, for faculty training in conducting an oral proficiency interview by certified trainers;
  • Louise Benjamin, A.Q. Miller School of Journalism and Mass Communications, to purchase instructional equipment to be placed in two classrooms;
  • Spencer Wood, American ethnic studies, for conference travel and student recruitment support;
  • Rollie Clem and Sherry Fleming, biology, to recruit graduate students;
  • Brett Wong, Jeremy Keen, master's student, Leavenworth, Erica Levitt, master's student, Olathe, and Jena Eder, junior, Liberal, all in kinesiology, for Developing Scholars students to present research at a national conference;
  • Brianna Nelson Goff, Institute for the Health and Security of Military Families in the School of Family Studies and Human Services, for screening of two documentaries and travel expenses of panelists;
  • Mithila Jugulam, agronomy, to assist in the purchase of a microplate spectrophotometer;
  • Lauren Ritterbush, sociology, anthropology and social work, for specialized ceramic analyses in a student’s collaborative research project;
  • Barbara Anderson, apparel, textiles and interior design, to purchase instructional equipment;
  • Karen McLaughlin Large, School of Music, Theatre, and Dance, to host a celebrated flutist, composer and clinician;
  • Debbie Mercer and Jacqueline Spears, College of Education, for STEM education strategic planning project and related travel expenses;
  • Tonatiuh Melgarejo, human nutrition, to help bring Zoobiquity to Kansas State University;
  • Ben Stark, School of Music, Theatre, and Dance, to develop a production archive and to improve dust collection equipment in the McCain scene shop;
  • Myra Gordon, office of diversity, to bring national consultant on public education, Steve Perry, to the Big 12 Conference on Black Student Government, and to provide support to the student group HALO;
  • Lorena Passarelli, biology, to partially fund the Distinguished Scientist Student Seminar Series; and
  • Haijun Kang, educational leadership, in travel support for eye tracking research projects at the K-State Olathe campus.

More proposals are submitted than can ever be funded. For the fall 2012 award period, a total of $762,816 was requested and the Academic Excellence program was able to fund $171,593.

The next round of awards is currently under way. Funding proposals should be submitted electronically to AcadExcellFund@k-state.edu by 5 p.m. Dec. 14 to be considered.  Please see the call for nominations published in K-State Today on Aug. 15 and again Dec. 5 by visiting http://www.k-state.edu/today/announcement.php?id=4176&category=from_the_administration&referredBy=K-State%20Today%20Archive.