Archives for April 2016

Graduate Student Grants in Sustainable Agriculture

see PIVOT notice

The primary focus of Graduate Student projects should be to:
– Conduct research and education, not research or education. Both elements are required.
– Demonstrate measurable impacts and outcomes that can increase thebody of knowledge of sustainable agriculture.
– Produce scholarly works and educational materials to assist others in acquiring new knowledge.
– Communicate the project goals, activities, and findings to producers and other stakeholders.
– Consult with farmers and ranchers throughout the life of the project (germination through completion) to help ensure these results.

Western SARE Graduate Student Grants in Sustainable Agriculture proposals must address issues in sustainable agriculture of current and potential importance to the western region.

Congress has defined sustainable agriculture as an integrated system of plant and animal production practices having a site-specific application that will over the longterm:
– Satisfy human food and fiber needs;
– Enhance environmental quality and the natural resource base upon which the agricultural economy depends;
– Make the most efficient use of nonrenewable resources and on-farm resources and integrate, where appropriate, natural biological cycles and controls;
– Sustain the economic viability of farm operations; and
– Enhance the quality of life for farmers and society as a whole.

Graduate Student Research (SCGSR) Program

see PIVOT notice

The goal of the Office of Science Graduate Student Research (SCGSR) program is to prepare graduate students for science, technology, engineering, or mathematics (STEM) careers critically important to the DOE Office ofScience mission, by providing graduate thesis research opportunities at DOE laboratories. The SCGSR program provides supplemental awards to outstanding U.S. graduate students to pursue part of their graduate thesis research at a DOE laboratory in areas that address scientific challenges central to the Office of Science mission. The research opportunity is expected to advance the graduate students’ overall doctoral thesis while providing access to the expertise, resources, and capabilities available at the DOE laboratories.

The SCGSR program is sponsored and managed by the DOE Office of Science’s Office of Workforce Development for Teachers and Scientists (WDTS), in collaboration with the 6 Office of Science research programs and the DOE national laboratories. Online application and awards administration support is provided by Oak Ridge Institute of Science and Education (ORISE) under Oak Ridge Associated Universities (ORAU).

The SCGSR program provides supplemental funds for graduate awardees to conduct part of their thesis research at a host DOE laboratory in collaboration with a DOE laboratory scientist within a defined award period.

Argonne: Guest Graduate Appointments

see PIVOT notice

Guest Graduate Appointments are available for qualified graduate students who show that access to Argonne National Laboratory will be beneficial to their thesis research and to Argonne programs. A Guest Graduate is provided a gate pass, usually for one year, and the student may visit Argonne whenever appropriate.

Argonne is a multidisciplinary science and engineering research center, where researchers work alongside experts from industry, academia and other government laboratories to address vital national challenges in clean energy, environment, technology and national security.

Graduate Research Fellowship Program (GRFP)

see PIVOT notice


The Graduate Research Fellowship Program (GRFP) is a National Science Foundation-wide program that provides Fellowships to individuals selected early in their graduate careers based on their demonstrated potential for significant research achievements in science, technology, engineering or mathematics (STEM) or in STEM education. Three years of support is provided by the program for graduate study that leads to a research-based master’s or doctoral degree in STEM or STEM education.

The program goals are 1) to select, recognize, and financially support individuals early in their careers with the demonstrated potential to be high achieving scientists and engineers, and 2) to broaden participation in science and engineering of underrepresented groups, including women, minorities, persons with disabilities, and veterans. GRFP is a critical program in NSF’s overall strategy to develop the globally-engaged workforce necessary to ensure the Nation’s leadership in advancing science and engineering research and innovation. The ranks of NSF Fellows include numerous individuals who have made transformative breakthrough discoveries in science and engineering, become leaders in their chosen careers, and been honored as Nobel laureates.

The Graduate Research Fellowship Program (GRFP) awards Fellowships for graduate study leading to research-based master’s and doctoral degrees in science and engineering. The Fields of Study listed in the Appendix are used to place applications in the most appropriate review panel and to track the disciplinary progress of Fellows and their career outcomes. Applicants may select “other” if their Field of Study is not represented in the list.

GRFP supports individuals proposing a comprehensive holistic plan forgraduate education that takes into account individual interests and competencies. Thus, an applicant must provide a detailed profile of her or his relevant educational and research experiences and plans for graduateeducation in such a way as to demonstrate potential for significant achievements in science and engineering.

National Science Foundation Research Traineeship Program (NRT)

see PIVOT notice

The NSF Research Traineeship (NRT) program is designed to encourage the development and implementation of bold, new, and potentially transformative models for STEM graduate education training. The NRT program seeks proposals that ensure that graduate students in research-based master’s and doctoral degree programs develop the skills, knowledge, and competencies needed to pursue a range of STEM careers. The NRT program includes two tracks: the Traineeship Track and the Innovations in Graduate Education (IGE) Track.

The Traineeship Track is dedicated to effective training of STEM graduate students in high priority interdisciplinary research areas, through the use of a comprehensive traineeship model that is innovative, evidence-based, and aligned with changing workforce and research needs. For FY2016, there are four priority areas: (1) Data-Enabled Science and Engineering (DESE), (2) Understanding the Brain (UtB), (3) Innovations at the Nexus of Food, Energy, and Water Systems (INFEWS), and (4) any other interdisciplinary research theme of national priority. The priority research areas for the FY2017 competition will be (1) UtB, (2) INFEWS, and (3) any other interdisciplinary research theme of national priority. The IGE Track focuses on test-bed projects aimed at piloting, testing, and validating innovative and potentially transformative approaches to graduate education. IGE projects are intended to generate the knowledge required for their customization, implementation, and broader adoption. While the Traineeship Track promotes building on the current knowledge base to develop comprehensive programs to effectively train STEM graduate students, the IGE Track supports testing of novel models or activities with high potential to enrich and extend the knowledge base on effective graduate education approaches.

The NRT program addresses both workforce development, emphasizing broad participation, and institutional capacity building needs in graduate education. For both tracks, strategic collaborations with the private sector, non-governmental organizations (NGOs), government agencies, national laboratories, field stations, teaching and learning centers, informal science centers, and academic partners are encouraged.

Awards to Stimulate and Support Undergraduate Research Experiences (ASSURE)

see PIVOT notice

The ASSURE program supports undergraduate research in DoD relevant disciplines and is designed to increase the number of high-quality undergraduate science and engineering majors who ultimately decide to pursue advanced degrees in these fields. A strong U.S. science and engineering workforce is of clear interest to the DoD, as the capability of producing superior technology is essential for future national security.

The ASSURE program aims to provide valuable research opportunities for undergraduates, either through ongoing research programs or through projects specially designed for this purpose. Research projects should allow high quality interaction of students with faculty and/or other research mentors and access to appropriate facilities and professional development opportunities. Active research experience is considered one of the most effective ways to attract and retain talented undergraduates in science and engineering.

ASSURE projects must have a well-defined common focus that enables a research related experience for students. Projects may be based in a single discipline or academic department, or interdisciplinary or multi-department research opportunities with a strong intellectual focus. Each proposal should reflect the unique combination of the proposing institution’s interests and capabilities. Applicants are encouraged to involve students in research who might not otherwise have the opportunity, particularly those from institutions where research programs are limited. Thus, a significant fraction of the student participants should come from outside the host institution. In addition, DoD is interested in strengthening institutions with limited research programs and especially encourages proposals that help to enhance the research infrastructure in predominantly undergraduate four-year institutions. Student participants must be citizens or permanent residents of the United States or its possessions.

DoD executes the ASSURE program collaboratively with the National Science Foundation (NSF) through its Research Experiences for Undergraduates (REU) Sites Program. DoD funded ASSURE sites will be selected by DoD scientists and engineers, but will be overseen by NSF as part of the NSF portfolio of REU Sites. There is no separate application for the ASSURE program; ASSURE funding is awarded through the NSF REU Sites Program.

NSF REU Partnership with the Department of Defense
NSF engages in a partnership with the Department of Defense (DoD) to expand undergraduate research opportunities in DoD-relevant research areas through the REU Sites program. The DoD activity is called Awards to Stimulate and Support Undergraduate Research Experiences (ASSURE). Any proposal submitted to NSF for the REU Sites program that is recommended for funding through the NSF merit review process will be considered by DoD representatives for possible support through ASSURE. Proposals that are selected for the DoD funding will involve DoD-relevant research and may come from any of the NSF directorates or offices that handle REU Site proposals.

research: countering pathogen interfaces with human defenses

Dr. Dipak Barua, assistant professor of chemical and biochemical engineering at Missouri S&T, is the principal investigator on a project funded with a Department of Energy grant for $112,377 on “countering pathogen interfaces with human defenses.”

see article in eNEWS

Guest Lecture: better environmental protection

Dr. David Robertson, Curators’ Teaching Professor of political science at the University of Missouri-St. Louis (UMSL) and the 2016 Maxwell C. Weiner Distinguished Professor of Humanities at Missouri S&T, will present “State and Landscape: The American Environmental Constitution” from 3:30 to 4:30 p.m. Wednesday, April 20, in Room 103 Engineering Management Building.

see article in eNews

Guest Lecture: The Difficulties of Data Collection under Extreme Conditions

Cochran Colloquium 2

Guest Lecture: The Importance of Collective Science

Cochran Colloquium 1