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Office of the Provost seed grants

Student Success Seed Grant Program proposals welcomed

The Office of the Provost and the Division of Student Affairs are pleased to welcome proposals for the 2017 Student Success Seed Grant Program.

All faculty and staff are eligible to submit proposals for the program, which is designed to support the development, replication, and dissemination of innovative solutions that address widespread challenges in postsecondary education for students who are at risk for not completing an undergraduate degree. A specific focus of the program is to improve student persistence and completion outcomes at Washington State University. Successful proposals for Student Success Seed Grants will demonstrate a clear plan for securing subsequent major external funding to continue, expand, and advance interventions.

Achieving our student success goals requires a continuous commitment to innovation and excellence, an intentional effort to align interventions with institutional strategy, and a shared vision enabling collaboration across our institution. To help facilitate this, accrued funding from the 2016 reallocation is being extended in order to invite new applications for the Student Success Seed Grant Program.

Principal Investigator and Co-Investigator eligibility is consistent with University policy developed by the Office of Research. Because many external submissions require PIs and teams with expertise in research, evaluation, theory, and practice, the strength of the personnel and collaboration involved will be considered when funding proposals. In addition, Seed Grant proposals are required to incorporate partnerships with either the Office of Undergraduate Education or Division of Student Affairs.

Leading up to the proposal deadline, the Office of the Provost and the Division of Student Affairs will host two technical workshops for those interested in submitting proposals. The workshops will be held March 30 at 10 a.m. and March 31 at 3 p.m., in CUE 518. Please contact Angela Merrill to RSVP for either workshop.

Student Success Seed Grants have a project period of 18 months and include a development stage and a scale-up stage. Award maximum is $25,000 for the total project period. Proposals are due April 14, 2017.

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Seed grants launch student success and Grand Challenges research projects

Washington State University will invest in 10 faculty-led projects aimed at providing transformative student experiences and enhancing research, scholarship, and creativity across our institution.

Sponsored by the Office of the Provost and the Office of Research, the seed grant competition generated 150 letters of intent and 41 full proposals. A total of $350,000 will be dispersed to fund Grand Challenges research projects, and $125,000 will be dispersed to fund Student Success projects.

The Student Success Seed Grants will enable faculty to develop projects to improve student retention and progress toward graduation, and the Grand Challenges Research Grants will jump-start projects focused on the Grand Challenges.

Student Success proposals funded include:

  • “Making DREAMS come true: A resilience intervention to increase academic persistence among undocumented students in higher education,” (Lead Principal Investigator – Paul Kwon, Department of Psychology)
  • “Interventions to instill a growth mindset among students in math-intensive gateway courses,” (Co-Principal Investigators – Alex Dimitrov, Department of Mathematics, Vancouver and Tahira Probst, Department of Psychology, Vancouver)
  • “Increasing the capacity for community engagement with a faculty fellows program,” (Lead Principal Investigator – Melanie Brown, Center for Civic Engagement)
  • “Extending an evidence-based, retention-enhancing human development course across WSU campuses,” (Co-Principal Investigators – Mary Kay Patton, Center for Transformational Learning and Leadership and Elizabeth Soliday, Human Development, Vancouver)
  • “Affordable learning project: Facilitating adoption or development of open education resources and low-cost resources for use in courses at WSU,” (Lead Principal Investigator – Talea Anderson, Center for Digital Scholarship and Curation)

The Grand Challenges Research Seed Grants generated projects that demonstrate a strong potential for extramural funding, the capacity for significant public engagement, and/or outreach to underserved communities, as follows:

  • “Optimizing GSI efficacy by integrating hydrologic, cultural, and socioeconomic elements in a watershed spanning the urban-agriculture continuum,” (Lead Principal Investigator – Anand Jayakaran, Extension Agriculture and Natural Resources Program Unit)
  • “Study police officer decision making,” (Lead Principal Investigator – David Makin, Department of Criminal Justice and Criminology)
  • “Developmental origins of health and disease: Identifying potential mechanisms for intergenerational transmission of risk and resilience,” (Lead Principal Investigator – Sara Waters, Department of Human Development at WSU Vancouver)
  • “Marijuana Use: Health benefits vs. Health risks,” (Lead Principal Investigator – Rebecca Craft, Department of Psychology)
  • “Next generation continuously monitored reusable low-cost biochemical/physiologic sensors with predictive wireless electronics powered by enzymatic biofuel cells,” (Lead Principal Investigator – Subhanshu Gupta, School of Electrical Engineering and Computer Science)

The Office of the Provost and the Office of Research report that the quality of proposals was extremely high, making funding decisions quite challenging.

“All of the units put a lot of work in,” says Craig Parks, special assistant to the Provost. “The proposals were very multidisciplinary in nature and there was a lot of good collaboration and good cost-sharing models. The faculty we heard from had very positive feedback on the process. They worked across departments and across colleges and that had never happened at this level.”

The Provost’s Office and the Office of Research Advancement and Partnerships are available to work with respective principal investigators to identify alternate funding sources for proposals not funded internally. The multidisciplinary nature of these projects will support their competitiveness for other funding opportunities.

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Faculty invited to submit Grand Challenges Research, Student Success proposals

Faculty play a central role in helping the University reach its goals in the areas of research and student success. The Office of the Provost and the Office of Research are committed to helping faculty achieve these shared goals through these seed grant opportunities:

The Grand Challenges Seed Grants are designed to support multidisciplinary initiatives and research projects that address one or more of the five Grand Challenges. The projects may be pilot programs, proof-of-concept research projects, public outreach, or workshops.

The Student Success Seed Grants are designed to foster a transformative student experience, as mandated in the Strategic Plan. Faculty are encouraged to develop strategies that could potentially attract extramural funding to be scaled up to an institutional level, or have the potential to be used across disciplines to increase student retention at WSU and increase students’ progress toward graduation.

Unlike the Strategic Reallocation proposals, which is a limited submission process facilitated by college and administrative leadership, the seed grant proposals may be submitted by WSU faculty. All faculty system-wide may submit proposals for each of the respective seed grant programs. There is no requirement that proposals be coordinated through the degree-granting college deans. Collaboration across colleges, campuses and nonacademic units is encouraged, though not required.

Awards range from $5,000 to $75,000 in one-time funds. Letters of Intent are due by Feb. 15, 2016 and proposals are due April 1. Decisions will be announced May 15 and the funding period will begin July 1.

For more information, or questions on the Grand Challenges Seed Grants, email or call Geeta Dutta at (509) 335-5980.

For more information, or questions on the Student Success Seed Grants, email or call Kristina Peterson-Wilson at (509) 335-8915.

Washington State University