UM-Flint School of Education & Human Services Boosts Faculty Research

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The Dean's Office of the School of Education and Human Services at the University of Michigan-Flint recently allocated portions of a Dean's Office research grant totaling $50,000 to several faculty members within the Education and Social Work departments.

This marks the second year that the SEHS Dean's Office has distributed this renewable fund, and reinforces the school's priority of placing greater attention toward developing a robust research-centered environment throughout the school while helping senior faculty members reach their professional goals.

These grant dollars, in conjunction with temporary adjustments in course loads and service commitments, provide faculty recipients with additional time and resources necessary for them to nurture various phases of their research and writing projects.

With support from Douglas Knerr, Provost & Vice Chancellor for Academic Affairs, and Chancellor Susan E. Borrego, the disbursement of the research fund specifically helps associate professors within the School of Education and Human Services by providing necessary time and resources for them to engage in research that they are passionate about, while helping them advance professionally.

Education faculty Christine Kenney, PhD; De'Andre Shepard, PhD; Annie Whitlock, PhD; and Aviva Dorfman, PhD attended the Institute for Innovation in Education gathering this year in Ann Arbor, along with faculty Matthew Wyneken, PhD and Jeff Kupperman, PhD (not pictured).

Some SEHS faculty are beginning to see their hard work fully materialize into published journal articles, chapters in text books, and books—or are moving their work closer to publication status.

"The Office of the Dean's commitment to supporting faculty research is paying off because our faculty are publishing in greater numbers," SEHS Dean Bob Barnett said. "These funding disbursements are also making it easier for faculty to reach their goals. We need full professorships to strengthen our leadership and mentorship among our faculty."

The SEHS Dean's Office faculty research grant helps to pay for equipment, the hiring of graduate assistants, various forms of critical data collection, and other requirements.

Among the recipients are Jeff Kupperman, associate professor in Educational Technology, who will use a slice of this funding to hold a retreat next spring with core Institute for Innovation in Education (iiE) leaders and to discuss the next phase of the group's research and writing projects. The iiE offers professional development events for faculty and graduate students who gather together each year to present innovative projects and to network with others.

Social work faculty Elizabeth Collardey, PhD, LMSW

The Dean's Office research funds will also benefit SEHS faculty who are researching individual projects in early childhood education. In Social Work, associate professor Elizabeth Collardey will use the funds to expand her peace class projects to advance social justice efforts among disadvantaged populations and to conduct a comparative study with Canadian children.

The Office of Research and Sponsored Programs at UM-Flint also offers $2,500 in start-up funds for new assistant professors. Barnett said his office tries to match that amount when possible so that new SEHS faculty members have even greater support to move forward with their research initiatives.

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