Research and Professional Growth Committee
Annual Report, 2007-2008

During the 2007-2008 academic year the Research and Professional Growth Committee met three times to evaluate research grant proposals and sabbatical leave applications. At its November 29th meeting, the committee awarded $19,500 in research grants toward 12 projects. At its March 27th meeting, the committee awarded $19,466 in research grants toward 19 projects.

The committee considered the need for a formal mechanism through the application website for department chairs to review proposals before they come to the committee. This review would allow chairs to guide faculty to other appropriate sources of funding and to be aware of financial needs on the part of department members. Web administrator, Kevin Treu, is aware of this need and intends to create such a mechanism in time for the fall 2008 grant period.

The committee discussed the issue of how best to fund the large number of proposals given limited resources. Often, the committee was unable to meet the full funding requests. In order to evaluate the current funding scheme of trying to fund at least partially the largest number of quality proposals possible, the committee proposed that a follow-up be done with the spring 2008 grant recipients after the award period to find out the following: How were you able to proceed with partial funding? Did the additional funds needed come out of your own pocket or from other sources? 

The committee met on January 24th to evaluate and recommend approval of 26 sabbatical leave applications. Committee members later gave Provost Kazee their individual rankings of thirteen proposals for the two new competitive full-year sabbaticals. The committee recommended that Kevin Treu (web administrator) create an online application for the full-year competitive proposals modeled on the standard sabbatical application form. The plan is that this will be in place for next year’s competitive full-year sabbatical applications. In addition, the committee requested that a mechanism be included in the online application for all sabbaticals for the attachment/inclusion of CVs. Finally, the committee recommended that an additional RPG committee meeting should be scheduled next year for separate consideration of the competitive full-year sabbatical applications.

The chair expresses her appreciation to all of the committee members for their diligent work during to the year and to Dr. Kevin Treu for his continued work on the committee’s website.

Cherie Maiden, Modern Languages and Literatures
Shelly Matthews, Religion
Derek Parsons, Music
Liz Smith (Chair), Political Science
Tom Kazee, Provost/ John Beckford, Dean of the Faculty
Gil Einstein, Psychology
Kevin Hutson, Mathematics

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