May 3, 2010 Newsletter


    Please note for all proposals that must be submitted via, the Office of University Research Services must have the final complete proposal, with all required attachments, no later than 48 hours prior to the agency deadline. Because of the higher possibility of technical difficulties with this new submission engine, the OURS cannot guarantee that proposals received later than 48 hours prior to the deadline will be submitted on time. Please direct any questions to the Office of University Research Services, 4-2236 or

    Announcement from the Office of University Research Services

    Reminder: Towson Academy of Scholars Accepting Applications for Academic Year 2010-11

    Deadline:      May 10, 2010

    This is a reminder that The Towson Academy of Scholars will be accepting applications for Towson Scholars for the academic year 2010-2011.  All full-time faculty up to the rank of Assistant Professor or Librarian I and II who have been at Towson three years or less are eligible to apply.  The purpose of the Academy is to gather senior-mentors with junior faculty in a seminar setting that will give the latter an opportunity to share their research projects, reflective thinking essays, or portions of their dissertations under revision.  The research, thought-analyses, or revisions will be undertaken during the year preceding presentation with support provided by the Towson Academy of Scholars.

    A committee of senior faculty members will oversee this initiative, and will serve as a review panel to select participating scholars.  Applications may be blind reviewed by external reviewers.  The committee will select up to three scholars from applications submitted from across the university community in the spring.  For the academic year 2010-2011, junior scholars will receive $1,000 in cash from the University.

    In the spring of 2011, at a date to be arranged by the committee, each of the junior scholars selected will present his or her seminar paper to the university community. In consultation with the scholars, the committee will arrange for one or two authorities in their fields to serve as discussants.

    Faculty members who are selected to be Towson Scholars will be encouraged to invite their students to their presentations.  Seminars are open to the university community, and junior faculty will be required to make their papers available upon request.

    While papers, essays, and/or chapters may reflect the academic discourse of their discipline, the oral presentations must communicate broadly to the University community.

    Closing date for applications is May 10, 2010 (Monday).

    Applications may be obtained on-line at the Office of University Research Services Web site,  Completed applications should be submitted to the Office of University Research Services, 7800 York Road, Room 225, by 5:00 pm May 10.  Applications emailed to by 5:00 pm May 10 will also be accepted.


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    Institutional, University Wide, or Cross-Disciplinary Opportunity

    Women and Minorities in Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics Fields Program

Agency:         U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA), National Institute of Food and                                    Agriculture (NIFA)
Deadlines:    June 7, 2010

The Women and Minorities in Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics Fields Program (WAMS) is a competitive grants program supporting research and extension projects. The program funds projects that will increase, to the maximum extent practicable, participation by women and underrepresented minorities from rural areas in science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) fields. The WAMS program will enable women and underrepresented minorities from rural areas to be significant and equal contributors in expanding the USDA-relevant STEM workforce by increased participation in:

  • Promotion of a safe, sufficient, and nutritious food supply for all Americans and for people around the world;
  • Sustainable agricultural policies that foster economic viability for small and mid-sized farms and rural businesses, protect natural resources, and promote value-added agriculture;
  • National leadership in climate change mitigation and adaptation;
  • Building a modern workplace with a modern workforce; and
  • Support for 21st century rural communities.

The goal of the WAMS program is to develop and implement robust collaborations to increase the representation, participation, and entrepreneurial skills and abilities of women and underrepresented minorities from rural areas in STEM careers, thereby contributing to economic prosperity in rural areas across the nation. The approaches to realize this goal will lead to the development of a robust and diverse food and agricultural STEM workforce that is highly competent in the application of STEM knowledge and skills, with increased participation of women and minorities from rural areas across a broad spectrum of rural, local, state, or national communities.

The WAMS program has the objective to advance women and underrepresented minorities from rural areas in innovative and entrepreneurial enterprises in STEM fields relevant to USDA mission sciences through research and extension projects that:

  • Focus on alignment to any of the six priority areas. They are:
    • Sustainable energy;
    • Global food security and hunger;
    • Climate change;
    • Nutrition and prevention of childhood obesity;
    • Food safety, and
    • Sustainable rural economies;
  • Demonstrate scalability, portability, adaptability, and utility for increasing the numbers of women and underrepresented minorities from rural areas gaining STEM knowledge, skills, and capabilities;
  • Enhance economic prosperity and increase America’s competitiveness;
  • Demonstrate robust partnerships that create optimal scope and delivery, and enhance participation of women and underrepresented minorities from rural areas to impact federal, state, or local needs in STEM fields; and
  • Create synergies to ensure project success from a life cycle perspective (from recruitment of the WAMS program target beneficiaries through their successful participation in the STEM fields in the workforce).

To contribute to America’s competitiveness, WAMS’s target beneficiaries – Women and Minorities from Rural Areas – will have a greater probability of placement into the workforce where they can have a direct impact on the rural economy.

Preference will be given to WAMS projects that (i) address at least one of the following priority areas listed above; and (ii) demonstrate robust and participatory collaborations that will facilitate nontraditional partnerships in disciplines and sectors, preparing women and minorities from rural areas to become gainfully employed in the STEM workforce. Eligible institutions that carry out continuing research and extension programs funded by the Secretary may propose research and extension projects in any discipline(s) of the food and agricultural sciences.

Award size will range from a minimum of $75,000 to a maximum of $300,000 as appropriate to the project type proposed. In FY 2010, NIFA is soliciting WAMS applications for two project types.  For single applicant projects, between $75,000 and $150,000 total costs may be requested. For joint applicant projects, up to $300,000 total costs may be requested. Project periods may range from 18 to 36 months in duration with a five year statutory limitation on the availability of funds. Grant recipients are required to match the USDA funds awarded on dollar-for-dollar basis from non-Federal sources with cash and in-kind contributions


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Collaborative Opportunity

Learn and Serve America Youth Engagement Zone

Agency:         Corporation for National and Community Service
Deadlines:     May 28, 2010 for letters of intent
                        June 15, 2010 for full proposal

The Learn and Serve America Youth Engagement Zone (YEZ) program is designed to improve student engagement, including student attendance and behavior, and student achievement, graduation rates, and matriculation rates by:

  1. Engaging youth as positive contributors through service-learning to demonstrate the relevance of academic coursework and the value of civic engagement to their educational and personal development;
  2. Connecting with citizens from diverse communities, backgrounds, and perspectives to provide expanded opportunities to serve; and
  3. Building enduring capacity within communities to become more effective at using service as a solution to address pressing challenges.

These grants will provide support for “eligible partnerships” to build on existing resources to develop coordinated school-based or community-based service-learning opportunities for secondary school students. All partnerships must include, at a minimum, at least one LEA, one community college, and one community-based entity.Eligible partnerships may also involveother entities that could include, but are not limited to, Indian tribes, U.S. territories, higher education institutions, State Commissions on National and Community Service, faith-based organizations and local government agencies.

The Corporation will host a technical assistance call for the Learn and Serve America Youth Engagement Zone grant competition to answer questions from potential applicants about this funding opportunity. Applicants are strongly encouraged to review the NOFA and Application Instructions in advance of the call. The call information is as follows:
Date: Tuesday May 18, 2010
Time: 3:00pm - 4:00pm Eastern
Call Leader: Cara Patrick
Dial-In Number: 888-323-2720
Passcode: 9393241

This call will be recorded and available for replay one hour after the call is complete.

In Fiscal Year 2010, there is approximately $5.4 million available for this program. The Corporation anticipates making an estimated 4 to 12 grant awards that will range from approximately $300,000 to $450,000 per year for up to three years. Funding beyond the first year for each grant award will be subject to the availability of future appropriations. We anticipate announcing the results of this competition in mid September 2010. If you intend to apply, please send an email to YEZ@cns.govby May 28, 2010.


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