ORAU awards 30 research grants to junior faculty

Oak Ridge Associated Universities has awarded competitive research grants totaling $150,000 to 30 junior faculty from ORAU member institutions. The annual grants are made through the Ralph E. Powe Junior Faculty Enhancement Awards program that provides funds to enrich the research and professional growth of young faculty.

The recipients, each of whom is in the first two years of a tenure track position, will receive $5,000 in “seed money” for the 2013-2014 academic year to enhance their research during the early stages of their career. Each recipient’s institution also matches the ORAU award with an additional $5,000, making the total prize worth $10,000 for each winner. Winners may use the grants to purchase equipment, continue research, or travel to professional meetings and conferences.

Since the program’s inception, ORAU has awarded more than 520 grants totaling more than $2.6 million. Including the matching funds from member institutions, ORAU has facilitated grants worth more than $5.2 million.

“ORAU is excited to support 30 exciting new ideas proposed by junior faculty from member institutions,” said Arlene Garrison, ORAU vice president of University Partnerships. “This funding enables creative exploration at a critical early career stage.”

The awards recognize faculty members for their work in any of five science and technology disciplines: engineering or applied science; life sciences; mathematics and computer science; physical sciences; and policy, management or education.

The awards, now in their 23nd year, are named for Ralph E. Powe, who served as the ORAU councilor from Mississippi State University for 16 years. Powe participated in numerous committees and special projects during his tenure and was elected chair of ORAU’s Council of Sponsoring Institutions prior to his death in 1996.

Recipients of the Ralph E. Powe Junior Faculty Enhancement Awards for the 2013-2014 academic year are listed below:

2012-2013 Ralph E. Powe Junior Faculty Enhancement Award Winners


Award Recipient

Sponsoring Institution


J. Wesley Burnett

West Virginia University

Policy, Management, or Education

Chih-Hao Chang

North Carolina State University

Engineering or Applied Science

Ann Cook

Ohio State University

Physical Sciences

Brooke Crowley

University of Cincinnati

Physical Sciences

Mingji Dai

Purdue University

Physical Sciences

Harmony Dalgleish

College of William and Mary

Life Sciences

Guglielmo Fucci

East Carolina University

Math/Computer Sciences

Elizabeth Gilbert

Virginia Tech

Life Sciences

Tijana Grove

Virginia Tech

Physical Sciences

Waseem Haider

University of Texas-Pan American

Engineering or Applied Science

Sang Eon Han

University of New Mexico

Engineering or Applied Science

Ivan Korendovych

Syracuse University

Engineering or Applied Science

Qinglei Li

Texas A&M University

Life Sciences

Eric Lukosi

University of Tennessee

Engineering or Applied Science

Alberto Marino

University of Oklahoma

Physical Sciences

Karen Maruska

Louisiana State University

Life Sciences

George Nelson

University of Alabama at Huntsville

Engineering or Applied Science

Chiwoo Park

Florida State University

Engineering or Applied Science

Cary Pint

Vanderbilt University

Engineering or Applied Science

Joshua Robinson

Pennsylvania State University

Engineering or Applied Science

Michael Rose

University of Texas at Austin

Physical Sciences

Abhyudai Singh

University of Delaware

Math/Computer Sciences

Stephen Valentine

West Virginia University

Life Sciences

Shravan Veerapaneni

University of Michigan

Math/Computer Sciences

Juan Vivero-Escoto

University of North Carolina-Charlotte

Physical Sciences

Chao Wang

Johns Hopkins University

Engineering or Applied Science

Jie Xu

George Mason University

Engineering or Applied Science

Yan Yao

University of Houston

Engineering or Applied Science

Guihua Yu

University of Texas at Austin

Engineering or Applied Science

Fuzhong Zhang

Washington University

Life Sciences


ORAU plans to offer the Ralph E. Powe Junior Faculty Enhancement Awards program again for the 2014-2015 academic year. Faculty members at ORAU sponsoring institutions who are within two years of their initial tenure-track appointments as assistant professors are eligible to apply. The deadline to apply is Jan. 10, 2014.

For more information on fellowships, awards, and grants offered by ORAU, visit www.orau.org/consortium/programs or contact Ann Farler at (865) 576-1898 or [email protected].



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