News 2019: UMass Dartmouth increased external grant awards by 26% in FY19

News 2019: UMass Dartmouth increased external grant awards by 26% in FY19
UMass Dartmouth increased external grant awards by 26% in FY19

Marine science drove $16M in new external funding

Student conducting basic research

In fiscal year 2019, UMass Dartmouth increased externally funded grant awards by 26 percent over fiscal year 2018, bringing the university’s total research and outreach awards for the year to $16 million.

“This increase in research funding is testament to the expertise and passion for discovery of our world-class faculty,” said Chancellor Robert E. Johnson. “Our faculty and the students they teach are applying their research to regional and global issues that will have impacts across generations.”

“The ability of our faculty to create new knowledge in service to society, from the SouthCoast to other continents demonstrates the power and value of being a national research university,” said Provost Mohammad Karim. “It is also important to note that the grant awards represent only one segment of our research enterprise, as our faculty also share their scholarship via national publications and conferences.”

The largest share of the awards – $10 million – focus on marine science-related topics.

The largest FY19 grant was $1.9 million from Vineyard Wind to assess the impact of wind farm construction on fish populations through surveys carried out pre- and post-construction. The research is being conducted by professors in the Department of Fisheries Oceanography (DFO) of the School for Marine Science and Technology (SMAST) including Professor Pingguo He, Professor Steve Cadrin, Professor Kevin Stokesbury, and their staff. The aim of this research is to evaluate impact of wind farms on commercial fisheries through collaborative effort among offshore wind companies, the fishing industry, and SMAST, which gathered input from local fishing groups, policymakers, and academics to create a shared monitoring framework.

Already, UMass Dartmouth researchers are off to a fast start in FY2020 with a $2.1 million grant by the National Science Foundation to help elementary school teachers integrate problem-solving skills common for computer programming into their math and science classes. The initiative is led by Director of the Kaput Center for Research & Innovation in STEM Education and Professor of Mathematics Education Chandra Orrill, Associate Provost for Decision Support & Strategic Initiatives and Professor of Computer and Information Science Ramprasad Balasubramanian, and Assistant Professor of STEM Education and Teacher Development Shakhnoza Kayumova.

Other FY2019 highlights include:

  • $1.48 million from the Massachusetts Department of Elementary and Secondary Education for the Workers Education Program led by Workers Education Program Director Lisa Jochim, providing adult education and English Language Learner programs to hundreds of students in downtown New Bedford.
  • $1.3 million from towns and organizations across the SouthCoast and Cape Cod to analyze and monitor coastal water quality as part of a project led by Professor Brian Howes.
  • $857,061 from the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, National Science Foundation, and other organizations to Professor Changsheng Chen for ocean modeling research.
  • $760,026 from the National Science Foundation for research related to the loss of Nitrogen in the Pacific Ocean and other ocean studies by Professor Mark Altabet.

UMass Dartmouth cultivates a vital and vibrant culture of research, scholarship, and innovation that reflects the expertise of our faculty, staff, and students; the strength of our academic programs; and the needs of our region, the Commonwealth, and the global community.

UMass Dartmouth achieved official recognition as a national research university in 2016 from the Carnegie Classification of Institutions of Higher Education. The university achieved U.S. News & World Report national university ranking 2017, making it the only nationally ranked Massachusetts doctoral research university located south of Boston.