WMU News

Grants received top $43 million in 2001-02

Sept. 23, 2002

KALAMAZOO -- Grants to Western Michigan University during the 2001-02 fiscal year totaled more than $43.5 million, according to a report presented to the Western Michigan University Board of Trustees at its Sept. 20 meeting.

The board learned of May and June grants to WMU of $6,896,899, which brought the total of grants received by the June 30 close of the 2001-02 fiscal year to $43,527,812. Trustees also learned that the total of grants received during the new fiscal year already has passed $7 million, with awards of $2,433,020 received in July and awards totaling $4,648,749 received during August.

Major grants received during the four months of new awards reported to the board included a number of federal awards from such agencies as the National Science Foundation, the Department of Education, the Department of Health and Human Services, the Department of State and the Department of Energy. In all, federal grants to WMU during the four-month period totaled more than $7 million and will be used by University researchers to fund research efforts in areas ranging from nanoscience to improving speech therapy for persons who stutter.

Among the largest amounts received by the University during the four-month period reported to trustees were a series of four grants totaling just over $1.6 million from Kalamazoo Community Mental Health Services to WMU's Center for Disability Services. The funding is being used to provide daily living, communication, behavior control and social skills services to developmentally disabled adults in Kalamazoo County.

A software award valued at $1.3 million went to Dr. Jorge Rodriguez, associate professor of industrial and manufacturing engineering. Unigraphics Solutions Inc. of St. Louis awarded a site license of the mechanical design software package SolidEdge for use on any machine in the University's College of Engineering and Applied Sciences.

Engineering software was also the focus of a $208,754 award to Dr. Michael B. Atkins, dean of the College of Engineering and Applied Sciences, from Dassault Systemes, Genesis Modeling Technologies, IBM and Prince CATIA. The award supports the annual maintenance of 30 seats of CATIA software that was awarded to the college in late 1998. The software is widely used in the automotive and aviation industries.

Dr. Robert A. Laing, professor of mathematics, and Dr. Ruth Ann Meyer, professor emerita of mathematics, received $1,087,681 from the National Science Foundation to continue the efforts of the Michigan Middle School Mathematics Reform Project, known as M3RP. The grant will fund the fourth year of the four-year program that assists school districts in implementing new middle school math programs designed to boost student achievement.

A $779,667 U.S. Department of Health and Human Services grant to Dr. Richard G. Long, principal research associate in the Department of Blind Rehabilitation, will allow a third year of continued development of technology that will aid blind and low-vision pedestrians as they negotiate complex intersections. For the five-year, $4 million project, Long is working in partnership with Boston College, Vanderbilt University, the Maryland School for the Blind and the University of North Carolina's Highway Safety Research Center.

The U.S. Department of Education awarded $500,000 to Viji Murali, vice president for information technology and chief information officer, to fund a joint virtual institute with California State University at Monterey Bay to explore the impact of wireless technology on teaching, learning, research and service. The joint venture was first announced earlier this year when WMU completed its campuswide wireless computing environment.

Media contact: Cheryl Roland, 269 387-8400, cheryl.roland@wmich.edu

Office of University Relations
Western Michigan University
1903 W Michigan Ave
Kalamazoo MI 49008-5433 USA
269 387-8400