In 1991, the College of Arts and Sciences established the Lumina Center for Research and Program Development, now the Office of Sponsored and Student Research, to meet an increased need for the College’s academic departments and programs to pursue external funding for their projects. The concept for the Center grew out of the College’s strategic planning sessions and the need to secure resources beyond what the University could reasonably support. From its inception, the Office of Sponsored and Student Research has assisted departments and faculty members in preparing proposals and securing external funding for research and departmental projects. Many of these programs have been instrumental in attracting excellent faculty and students to Valpo.

The Office of Sponsored and Student Research has had four directors since its inception: Linda Ferguson (1991-1995), Rick Gillman (1995-2003, 2011-present), Sandy McMullen (2003-2009), and Mike Owens (2009-2011). Over the years, the role of the Office of Sponsored and Student Research has evolved and expanded beyond the College of Arts and Sciences. In 1997, the Office of Sponsored and Student Research director was designated as the Sponsored Research Officer for all proposals to the National Science Foundation (NSF), a role that continues to this day. In this capacity, the director of the Office of Sponsored and Student Research assists faculty, primarily from the College of Arts and Sciences and the College of Engineering, with the development and submission of their proposals to the NSF. In addition, under Gillman’s leadership, the Office of Sponsored and Student Research became increasingly involved in the development of interdisciplinary projects that impacted the broader university community and paved the way for the Office to support seekers of academic grants University-wide.

In 2003, the Office of Sponsored and Student Research and the Office of Institutional Advancement (OIA) initiated a joint system of support for campus grant initiatives. The objective of the cooperative system is to implement a systematic and strategic approach for grantseeking and fundraising to support the mission and priorities of the university. As part of this system, the Office of Sponsored and Student Research coordinates faculty and departmental research grant applications, while OIA focuses on campuswide projects on a much broader scale, such as capital improvements, enrollment enhancements, and endowed chairs. The support services available through the Office of Sponsored and Student Research and OIA include identifying potential funding sources, organizing ideas and projects, gathering data, writing proposal narratives, developing budgets and justification narratives, and editing and reviewing proposals. The joint approach encourages the development of challenging projects; maximizes use of limited resources; fosters improved communication, collaboration and coordination; and increases the potential for success with outside funding sources.

To contact us:
Rick Gillman, Associate Provost
Sponsored Research Officer
Office of the Provost
Kretzmann Hall, Room 103
Tel. 219.464.6718
Email: rick.gillman@valpo.edu

Dorothy Warner
Director of Sponsored and Student Research
Arts & Sciences Building, Room 208A
Tel. 219.464.5798
Email: dorothy.warner1@valpo.edu

Kathy Groth, Director
Corporations and Foundations
Office of Institutional Advancement
Loke Hall
Tel. 219.464.5144
Email: kathy.groth@valpo.edu

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