Research and Innovation Digital Newsletter February 2019

Join us March 26 at the Spring Convocation, 9 a.m. to 2 p.m.
Spring Convocation celebrates research excellence at WMU. Organized by the Office of the Vice President for Research, the day's schedule includes two symposia on education and sustainability, a Fulbright Scholars workshop, poster presentations of grant winners, and the Research Excellence luncheon. Information is available and regular updates on speakers will be provided.

New Limited Submission Website and Process Announced

OVPR will use InfoReady to post and manage all opportunities in which the sponsor limits the number of applications that can be submitted from a given institution, also known as limited submission opportunities. All open limited submission opportunities, of which our office is aware, will be posted on the InfoReady website.

Do note, we will no longer send email notices of competitions. Instead, we will post these limited submission opportunities to the InfoReady website, which will allow faculty and staff to find all open competitions and to submit a letter of intent (for internal use only) and, when necessary, an internal pre-proposal (white paper), for any open competition. This new process will greatly improve the efficiency and transparency of the limited submission process.

ECRT Payroll Confirmation Opened

The fall (August 15 through December 31, 2018) ecrt pre-review period is now open. Please refer to the  Grants and Contracts website for step-by-step instructions. Before clicking the pre-review button, however, please make sure all payroll, direct or cost share for the project, is reflected. If not, please contact Grants and Contracts at Pre-review will need to be completed prior to the opening of confirmation, which is scheduled for Feb. 26.

Mapping and GIS Services for Research

WMU Libraries offers a complimentary custom mapping and geographic information system (GIS) service to all University faculty, staff and students. To develop maps and graphics to include in publications, dissertations and theses, or other research and teaching projects, contact Jason Glatz.

Data Management Plan (DMP) Tool 

Does your proposal require a Data Management Plan? Many agencies require the researcher to create these DMPs, and each sponsor has different requirements; WMU is a participating institution in the DMPTool. The DMPTool provides a click-through wizard for creating a data management plan that complies with sponsor requirements. For additional help, contact your research program officer.

Feb. 19 Discovery Acceleration Workshop 

Join us at the next Discovery Acceleration Workshop on "Strategic Paths toward Successful Grants from Foundations and Other Non-Profit Organizations." This workshop is scheduled for Feb. 19, noon to 2 p.m. in the Fetzer Center, Room 1040. Learn more about the workshop and register.

Internal Funding Deadline for Undergraduates

The Undergraduate Research and Creative Scholarship Excellence Award application deadline is March 11 for students working Summer II or Fall 2019 semester. The requirements have changed to increase faculty eligibility to sponsor up to two students and the award has increased to $750. More.

Congratulations on Recent Research Endeavors
  • Dr. Todd Barkman's recent journal article, "Novel genetic code and record-setting AT-richness in the highly reduced plastid genome of the holoparasitic plant Balanophora," has been published online.
  • Wendy Beane's journal article, "Weak magnetic fields alter stem cell-mediated growth," Science Advances, Jan, 30, 2019, Vol. 5, no. 1, eaau7201, appeared in Science Advances and has received media attention. Co-authors include four undergraduate and 3 graduate students at WMU in addition to colleagues at University of Colorado Boulder.
  • Lori Wingate, The Evaluation Center, was awarded a $4.9 million NSF grant: "EvaluATE: Evaluation, Learning and Research Hub for Advanced Technological Education." More 
MTRAC Funding Opportunity - Deadline Feb. 21, 2019

A reminder that the Michigan Translational Research and Commercialization (MTRAC) "Innovation Hub for Ag & Bio" deadline is Feb. 21, 2019. Translational research support is available to innovators at institutions of higher education, non-profit research centers, and hospitals systems throughout Michigan. More.  

Spotlight on Undergraduate Research

This month's spotlight is focused on two undergraduates, seniors Anika Johns and Rachel Wilgenhof, who have been working with Dr. Suma Devenga, assistant professor in Speech, Language and Hearing Sciences in the Neurogenic Communication Intervention Lab. Anika and Rachel work with research participants and assist with data collection. Currently, both are working to complete their honors theses and will present their research at the Michigan Speech, Language and Hearing Association (MSHA) Convention next month. 

Anika is researching the generalizability within individuals with chronic aphasia, a language disorder associated with a brain injury and stroke. Aphasia affects not just language, but everyday activities. It was Rachel inviting Anika to join the NCI Lab that made the difference for her. "(Rachel) introduced me to this area of research and I jumped for the opportunity," says Anika. "It has allowed me to understand what it takes to be a researcher; it has increased my writing abilities; and it has allowed me to have hands-on experience with the clients we are conducting research on."

Rachel began her work with Dr. Devenga in fall 2017., working on two different research projects. Under Devenga's mentorship, Rachel is pursuing her own research project as part of her honors college thesis, "Collaborative Referencing in Wernicke's Aphasia: A Case Study." For her, the opportunity to participate in research has provided her professional and personal development. She explains, "I've had the opportunity to learn more about language to use in research writing, applying for grants, and required formalities such as submitting HSIRB information. Overall, conducting research within the NCI Lab has opened so many doors for me." 

Upcoming events
  • The Dept. of Physics Colloquium on Monday, Feb. 25 will feature Patricia Sievert, Director of Northern Illinois University's STEM Outreach Program. Sievert will speak on "An Outreach Story: Starting and Growing an Outreach Program (with and without grant funding)." She will begin her talk at 4 p.m. in 1110 Rood Hall. More information.
  • The Graduate College's Research and Creative Activities Poster and Performance Day is April 11, 2019.
  • The WMed Research Day is April 16-17. Questions may be sent to