WMU News

More than $7.3 million in grants received in November, December

Feb. 1, 2000

KALAMAZOO -- More than $3 million in funding to continue pilot training of British Airways cadets was among the $7.3 million in grants received by Western Michigan University during November and December, according to a report presented to the WMU Board of Trustees at its Jan. 28 meeting.

A total of $7,393,066 was received in November and December, pushing the year-to-date total of grants received since the July 1 start of the fiscal year to $26,537,294.

Ninety percent of the grant money received was to augment, continue or renew grants previously received by the University.

"Receiving additional support to renew, continue or supplement ongoing grant-funded research and projects is testimony to the exceptional work being done by our faculty in the areas of research, instruction and public service," says Dr. Donald E. Thompson, vice president for research and dean of the Graduate College.

In addition to the $3 million received by the Universityís College of Aviation from British Airways to continue its pilot training for its cadets, other grants received to boost ongoing grant-funded projects include:

A $1,328,000 grant renewal from the Michigan Department of Corrections to Dr. C. Dennis Simpson, professor of community health services and director of the Specialty Program in Alcohol and Drug Abuse, and James Kendrick, assistant professor of community health services, to provide substance abuse treatment services for prisoners, parolees and probationers.

Two grants from industry to support state-of-the-art software facilities in the College of Engineering and Applied Sciences. Moldflow Corp. awarded Dr. Michael Atkins, chairperson of the Department of Industrial and Manufacturing Engineering, $901,750 to provide maintenance and support for the software and hardware housed in the Moldflow Center for Design Excellence at WMU. The center was established in 1998 by a $2.9 million grant from Moldflow, a developer of design software used to produce plastic parts for the auto, aviation and electronics industries. It provides training, industrial seminars and customer visits for Moldflow as well as gives WMU students and faculty access to the center for class projects, consulting and research.

Atkins also received $208,754 from Dassault Systemes, Genesis Modeling Technologies, IBM and Johnson Controls Interiors to provide maintenance support for CATIA software in the computer labs of the University's College of Engineering and Applied Sciences. WMU received the software as part of a $51 million grant in 1998 and is one of only a handful of universities in the nation and the only engineering school in Michigan to have a complete CATIA training facility.

A $521,281 grant from the National Science Foundation awarded to Dr. Laura Van Zoest, assistant professor of mathematics and statistics, and Beth Ritsema, instructor of mathematics and statistics, to continue the implementation and evaluation of the Core Plus Mathematics Project curriculum in 11 high schools in Southwest Michigan.

A $258,390 grant from the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services awarded to Dr. James Hillenbrand, professor of speech pathology and audiology, to continue his research into how human speech is created and how the ear and brain convert that sound into meaning.

In addition, a number of new grants were received. Among these are an award for $250,000 from the Michigan Department of Environmental Quality to Dr. David Dickason, professor of geography and director of WMU's GIS Center, and Lauren Hughes, manager of the Groundwater Education in Michigan Center at WMU, to develop a data information center for the Kalamazoo River watershed.

The Corporation for Public Broadcasting has awarded $140,037 to Floyd Pientka, general manager of WMUK, the University's public radio station, to support the station's operating expenses and to purchase national programming.

Drs. Mark Jenness and Michael Reed, both senior research associates in the Department of Science Studies, were awarded $120,059 by the Delta-Schoolcraft Intermediate School District. The award is to evaluate regional implementation of a Technology Innovation Challenge Grant from the U.S. Department of Education designed to improve the use of technology in three school districts in the Upper Peninsula.

Media contact: Marie Lee, 616 387-8400, marie.lee@wmich.edu

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