June 2, 2015

National, international attention for major research wins

What a month we had in May. Two major aerospace-related research announcements continue to garner national and international attention, and they further affirm Mississippi State's role as our state's flagship research university. On May 8, the FAA announced that our ASSURE team will lead the new National Center of Excellence for Unmanned Aircraft Systems, and a few weeks later on May 28, U.S. Sens. Thad Cochran and Roger Wicker and Gov. Phil Bryant jointly announced Boeing's decision to relocate its Stitched Resin Infused Composite Research Center to the Raspet Flight Research Lab.


DavidShawHeadshotBlog.jpg

David Shaw is vice president for research and economic development at Mississippi State University.


Read more about the FAA's announcement at http://www.msstate.edu/web/media/detail.php?id=7237 and see http://www.msstate.edu/web/media/detail.php?id=7272 for additional information about our collaboration with Boeing.

I could not be more proud of the tremendous effort many of you put forth to achieve this unparalleled success for our university. This Friday [June 5], I hope everyone can join us at 11 a.m. at the A.B. McKay Food and Enology Laboratory for a news conference with President Mark E. Keenum, Gov. Bryant and MDA Executive Director Glenn McCullough about the new UAS center of excellence and for a demonstration of an unmanned aerial vehicle in flight.

S.P.A. concludes D.A.W.G. program's third year
Congratulations to the 13 Mississippi State staff members who graduated on May 28 from the professional development program offered by Sponsored Programs Administration: Amanda Baine, Center for Advanced Vehicular Systems; Shonda Cumberland, Computer Science and Engineering; Kimberly Dickey, Sponsored Programs Accounting; Lynn Eiland, Research and Curriculum Unit; Heriberto Gonzalez Lozano, International Institute; Merri Kilpatrick, Civil and Environmental Engineering; Jada McMullen, Sponsored Programs Accounting; Katheryn McTaggart, Human Sciences; Nicole Medeiros, Wildlife, Fisheries and Aquaculture; Dianne Phillips, Mechanical Engineering; Mashala Pulliam, High Performance Computing Collaboratory; Erin Ray, Human Sciences; and Katie Sisk, MAFES/FWRC Administration. Year three of the Departmental Administrator Working Group — D.A.W.G., for short — provided participants a nine-month curriculum designed to develop sponsored-project administration skills and foster networking opportunities with their campus peers.

Save the date: Joint Center for Energy Storage Research symposium
In mid-August, we will host a regional symposium in conjunction with the Argonne National Laboratory-led Joint Center for Energy Storage Research examining the challenges and opportunities of energy storage technology for the electric grid in the Southeast. The event will serve as a forum for industry, utility companies, academic and government researchers, and policymakers to discuss energy storage and major applications in the region at both the transmission and distribution level. Learn more about the symposium at www.ei.msstate.edu/jcesrsymposium.

Kudos and congratulations
Every month, I look forward to sharing success stories about our faculty and staff with you, and here are a few that have crossed my desk recently:

* Congratulations to Matthew Berg, an assistant professor in the Department of Physics and Astronomy, who has been awarded a prestigious NSF Faculty Early Career Development Program Award. In addition to his teaching, Dr. Berg works with the Center for Computational Sciences at the High Performance Computing Collaboratory. Read more about his research at www.msstate.edu/web/media/detail.php?id=7235.

* Kudos to Roger King, director of the Institute for Computational Research in Engineering and Science and Giles Distinguished Professor of Electrical and Computer Engineering, and Richard Weed, Center for Advanced Vehicular Systems associate research professor, and David Thompson, who holds the Airbus Helicopters Inc. Endowed Professorship in the Department of Aerospace Engineering, whose work is featured in a recent NATO publication. Read more about this international recognition at www.msstate.edu/web/media/detail.php?id=7255.

* Congratulations to Kari Babski-Reeves, an associate professor in the Department of Industrial and Systems Engineering, who has been elected as a director of the Board of Certification in Professional Ergonomics. During her three-year term, she will assist the BCPE president with forging new directions for the certification organization, identifying and testing applications in core competencies, and communicating ergonomics-related issues to the public and within the profession.

Final words
Thank you for taking the time to read this month’s letter. If you have any questions, suggestions or concerns about research and economic development at Mississippi State, please feel free to contact me at dshaw@research.msstate.edu.

Go Dawgs!

— David

May 5, 2015

Exceptional year for research, economic development efforts

Another academic year is drawing to a close, and what an exceptional year it has been for Mississippi State's research enterprise and economic development efforts thanks to the outstanding work of so many of you. Late last month, we celebrated the achievements of our student, faculty and staff researchers with the annual research awards banquet. Congratulations to Professor Brent Funderburk in the College of Architecture, Art and Design for winning the 2015 Ralph E. Powe Research Excellence Award — the university’s top research honor. For more about this year’s award recipients, please see www.msstate.edu/web/media/detail.php?id=7227.


DavidShawHeadshotBlog.jpg

David Shaw is vice president for research and economic development at Mississippi State University.


Faculty Leadership Program application deadline
As I have mentioned, applications for the 2015-2016 Faculty Leadership Program are due May 29, and I encourage you to consider applying. This leadership orientation program for selected faculty has been very successful in the past, and many of its participants now serve in key university leadership positions. Learn more about the application process at www.research.msstate.edu/rresources/news.php?id=4078.

Wanted: Your ideas for the Research Seminar Series
We are in the process of putting together the 2015-2016 Research Seminar Series, and if you have a suggestion for a topic you would like to see us cover, please send it to Assistant Vice President for Research Teresa Gammill at tgammill@research.msstate.edu.

F.D.P. membership pays dividends
We are committed to enhancing "how research gets done" at Mississippi State, and an integral component of this effort is reducing roadblocks by simplifying the research administration process within the current regulatory environment. Our membership in the Federal Demonstration Partnership provides valuable resources for achieving this goal. The F.D.P.'s members "work to streamline the administration of federally sponsored research," and it "offers a forum for individuals from universities and nonprofits to work collaboratively with federal agency officials to improve the national research enterprise." Learn more about the F.D.P. at http://sites.nationalacademies.org/PGA/fdp or contact Jennifer Easley, director of Sponsored Programs Administration, at jeasley@spa.msstate.edu or 662-325-3751.

Animal use certification session this month
If you are a faculty, staff or student researcher who will be using animals in the coming months or are in need of a refresher course, please plan to attend the Office of Research Compliance's animal user certification training session on May 20. All personnel listed on active animal projects must be certified, and certification must be completed every four years. For additional information or to register for this live session, visit http://orc.msstate.edu/quicklinks/training.php.

Kudos and congratulations
Every month, I look forward to sharing success stories about our faculty and staff with you, and here are a few that have crossed my desk recently:

* First, a clarification from last month's letter: Congratulations to Steven Daniewicz, professor in the Department of Mechanical Engineering, who has been named a Fellow of ASTM International and honored with the organization's Award of Merit. Previously known as the American Society for Testing and Materials, ASTM "is a globally recognized leader in the development and delivery of international voluntary consensus standards."

* Congratulations to Drew Hamilton, associate vice president for research and professor of computer science and engineering, who has been named a fellow of the Society for Modeling and Simulation International. Read more about this honor at www.msstate.edu/web/media/detail.php?id=7216.

* Kudos to Dr. Lanny Pace, executive director of the College of Veterinary Medicine's Veterinary Research and Diagnostic Laboratory System, who has been recognized by the National Institute for Animal Agriculture for his dedication to animal agriculture, specifically for involving the organization in aquaculture. Read more about this recognition at www.msstate.edu/web/memo/story.php?id=2798.

* Congratulations to Achille Messac, professor in the Department of Aerospace Engineering, who has been elected to the American Institute of Aeronautics and Astronautics board of directors. Dr. Messac is one of two academics elected by the A.I.A.A.'s international membership to serve on the board of the world's largest aerospace professional society.

* Kudos to the High Performance Computing Collaboratory's publishing group for winning two awards from the Public Relations Association of Mississippi recently. Diane Godwin, Bethany Stroud, Cliff Abbott and Lindy Nelson received an Award of Excellence for website design for their work on the ASSUREUAS.org website, and Diane Godwin, Diane Janus and Public Affairs photographer Megan Bean received an Award of Excellence for the Geosystems Research Institute annual report.

* Congratulations to Jodi Roberts, the university's Institutional Review Board officer and assistant director of Research Compliance, who has earned the Certified I.R.B. Professional credential. C.I.P. certification was developed to promote ethical research practices and programs by ensuring that professionals charged with their administration have demonstrated an advanced level of knowledge, understanding and experience.

Final words
As many of you know, our office works closely with the MSU Foundation on a number of projects, and I was very pleased to see that the university's Infinite Impact capital campaign has surpassed the $500 million milestone and is closing in on the overall goal of $600 million. Read more about the campaign's progress at www.msstate.edu/web/media/detail.php?id=7186.

Thank you for taking the time to read this month’s letter. If you have any questions, suggestions or concerns about research and economic development at Mississippi State, please feel free to contact me at dshaw@research.msstate.edu.

Congratulations to all of our new graduates and go Dawgs!

— David

April 7, 2015

Applications sought for Faculty Leadership Program

We have had a busy spring in the Office of Research and Economic Development, and like many of you, are preparing for a final push to the end of another successful semester at Mississippi State. Please let me take a few minutes to give you an update.

DavidShawHeadshotBlog.jpg

David Shaw is vice president for research and economic development at Mississippi State University.

Applications sought for faculty leadership training
My office will join with the Office of the Provost and Executive Vice President to lead Mississippi State's Faculty Leadership Program in the upcoming 2015-2016 academic year. This leadership orientation program for selected faculty has been very successful in the past, and many of its participants serve in key university leadership positions today. To apply, interested faculty should send a one-page summary addressing their future career plans, a current abbreviated CV (3-5 pages maximum) and a one-page nomination letter from their center director, department head or dean. The nomination letter should provide detailed insight as to why this faculty member should be selected. Applications are due May 29, and additional information is available at www.research.msstate.edu/rresources/news.php?id=4078.

NIH now requires new biosketch format
Many of you attended the "Jump Start! Tips on Writing an NIH R01 Application" seminar presented by Kathy Grzech from the University of Kentucky in late March. During her presentation, she provided an update about the new -- and required -- NIH biosketch format. For anyone who did not attend, please be aware that the new biosketch format is for all competing and non-competing applications submitted for due dates on or after May 25. Biosketch format pages, instructions, samples and FAQs are available on NIH’s SF 424 (R&R) Forms and Applications page at http://grants.nih.gov/grants/funding/424/index.htm#format and according to NIH, applicants may use Science Experts Network Curriculum Vitae (SciENcv) to generate their biosketches faster and in the right format. A YouTube video with instructions for using SciENcv is online at www.youtube.com/watch?v=PRWy-3GXhtU.

Responsible conduct of research sessions drawing to a close
The final Responsible Conduct of Research live session will be held Thursday [April 9] at 3 p.m. at the Franklin Furniture Institute. Ron Cossman, associate research professor and research fellow with the Social Science Research Center, will lead an informative presentation on data integrity. Please contact Kacey Strickland, director of the Office of Research Compliance, at 662-325-7474 with any questions about Responsible Conduct of Research. To register or to see additional details, please visit
https://ssl2.msstate.edu/orc/workshops/loginorc.php.

Federal patent examiner visiting campus
The Office of Technology Management will host Asad Nawaz, a supervising examiner for the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office's Office of Innovation Development, on Monday [April 13], and I encourage you to attend his public presentation, "The Value of Intellectual Property and Its Protection" from 2:30-4 p.m. in Mitchell Memorial Library’s auditorium. Read more about his visit at www.research.msstate.edu/rresources/news.php?id=4097.

French named Stennis Institute executive director
As many of you know, Eddie French is now serving as the executive director of the Stennis Institute of Government and Community Development, which reports to my office and the College of Arts and Sciences. I believe that Dr. French has a unique combination of knowledge of government at all levels in Mississippi, a rapport with constituents in the state, and the respect within and external to the university -- the perfect choice to lead Stennis. We are looking forward to working with him.

Kudos and congratulations
Every month, I look forward to sharing success stories about our faculty and staff with you, and here are a few that have crossed my desk:

* Congratulations to Matthew Berg, an assistant professor in the Department of Physics and Astronomy, who has been awarded a CAREER award from the National Science Foundation -- one of the agency's most competitive and prestigious research grants. Dr. Berg is also a researcher with the Center for Computational Sciences in the High Performance Computing Collaboratory.

* Kudos to Mimmo Parisi and the National Strategic Planning & Analysis Research Center team for partnering with the State of Mississippi and others to land a $20-million USDA grant. Dr. Parisi and NSPARC have developed an innovative program that will assist Mississippians with skills training and employment. Read more about it at hwww.msstate.edu/web/media/detail.php?id=7145.

* Congratulations to Alicia Musselwhite, the university safety officer in the Environmental Health and Safety Office, who has been appointed to serve on the Codes, Standards and Technical Research Committee of the Center for Campus Fire Safety -- a national organization devoted to reducing the loss of life from fire on campuses in the U.S.

* Kudos to Heather Jordan, an assistant professor in the Department of Biological Sciences, who has received a grant from the National Institute of Justice, the U.S. Justice Department's research, development and evaluation agency, for her three-year project, "Utilization of Microbial Structure and Function in Investigations of Criminal Justice." Read more about her collaborative work with Michigan State scientists at www.msstate.edu/web/media/detail.php?id=7155.

* Congratulations to Jeremiah Dumas, the director of parking, transit and sustainability and a former researcher at the Geosystems Research Institute, who was recently honored by the Mississippi Business Journal as a Top 40 Under 40. The program recognizes the best and brightest of our state's young leaders.

* Kudos to Gnaneswar Gude, an assistant professor in the Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering, on two recent recognitions. First, he received the 2015 Chi Epsilon Excellence in Teaching Award for the Southwest District. This qualified him for consideration at the national level, and he subsequently was awarded the 2015 National James M. Robbins Excellence in Teaching Award. These recognitions were based on a compilation of information demonstrating creativity, progressive teaching pedagogy and dedication to the education of the next generation of engineers.

Final words
If you haven't had an opportunity to tour The Kinsey Collection now on display in Mitchell Memorial Library's Grisham Room, I encourage you to do so before it closes June 20. It is exceptional. As always, thank you for taking the time to read this month’s letter. If you have any questions, suggestions or concerns about research and economic development at Mississippi State, please feel free to contact me at dshaw@research.msstate.edu.

Go Dawgs!

— David

March 9, 2015

OTM director named; export compliance sessions set

While we’ve had our fair share of winter weather on campus recently, we reach a milestone in the semester this week with Spring Break, and I hope that each of you is having a good one. Please let me take a moment to give you an update from the Office of Research and Economic Development.


DavidShawHeadshotBlog.jpg

David Shaw is vice president for research and economic development at Mississippi State University.


McCandless named Office of Technology Management director
After a successful search, we are pleased to welcome attorney Kris McCandless to the Office of Technology Management as director this week. Kris brings a wealth of experience, as well as extensive knowledge about Mississippi State’s research enterprise, to this important leadership position. Special thanks to Associate Vice President Kathy Gelston for leading our search, and to RTC Director Marc McGee, who led the office as interim director during this transition period. Additionally, please join me in welcoming Jim Mitchell as OTM’s newest licensing associate. I know that both Kris and Jim are looking forward to working with faculty and staff to move inventions, new products, and processes developed at the university into the marketplace.

Experts to lead export control sessions
As most of you know, export compliance is an important issue at Mississippi State and other major research universities around the country, as well as for U.S.-based companies operating internationally. Next week, my office joins the Office of Research Security to sponsor two days of export control training sessions. We have two experts leading these sessions March 18-19. Suzanne Palmer and Lisa Bencivenga with Export Compliance Solutions LLC of Annapolis, Maryland, will be presenting important information, including a basic understanding in Export Administration Regulations (EAR), International Traffic in Arms Regulations (ITAR) and the Office of Foreign Assets Controls (OFAC), and the Export Control Reform Initiative. For additional information or to register, please see http://www.research.msstate.edu/rresources/news.php?id=4040.

'Safety stand-down' phase one deadline this Friday
As I have mentioned over the past few months, the White House has directed all federal departments and agencies -- including the USDA, NIH, CDC, FDA, EPA and others -- that operate facilities that possess, use or transfer human, animal or plant infectious agents and toxins and/or recombinant/synthetic nucleic acids to perform a “Safety Stand-Down.” In a continuing effort to meet best practices at Mississippi State, the university is supporting this endeavor via a phased approach in order to ensure that everyone has sufficient time to respond. MSU is requiring all principal investigators who conduct research at Biosafety Level 2 to participate in a phased plan to accomplish the tasks at hand. The deadline for phase one is this Friday [March 13]. For additional information, please visit http://blogs.msstate.edu/ored/2014/10/safety_standdown_plan_in_place.html.

Responsible conduct of research sessions this month
The university’s Responsible Conduct of Research live sessions continue with a seminar on “Responsible Authorship and Publication Practices” on March 23 at 3 p.m. in Thompson Hall, as well as a session on “Developing Data Management Plans and Individual Development Plans” on March 25 at 2:30 p.m. in Mitchell Memorial Library’s auditorium. Please contact Kacey Strickland, director of the Office of Research Compliance, at 662-325-7474 with any questions about Responsible Conduct of Research. To register or to see the full spring schedule, please visit
https://ssl2.msstate.edu/orc/workshops/loginorc.php.

MSU Libraries a resource for writing DMPs
At the end of the month, the MSU Libraries team will be previewing their scholarly communication initiatives during the Research Seminar Series session about developing data management plans (DMPs). Their focus encompasses many facets related to scholarly communication including open access/author rights, copyright, the development of an institutional repository, and data management services. Increasingly, DMPs are an essential component of research projects and are now required by the National Science Foundation for its funding proposals. We are very appreciative of the library for coordinating the DMP process for faculty and researchers, and I encourage you to attend the March 25 seminar to learn more. Additional details are online at http://www.msstate.edu/web/calendar/detail.php?id=12011.

Per diem charges for animals updated
Dr. Lucy Senter, the director of the Office of Laboratory Animal Resources, would like to remind faculty and staff that animal per diem charges have been updated. The new rates should be applied to all new grants and projects as of March 1, 2015, but will not be applied retroactively to pre-existing grants or contracts. The rates are available online at http://www.lar.msstate.edu/perdiem.

Final words
With every letter, I look forward to sharing success stories about our faculty and staff with you, and this month I’d like to congratulate Dan Reynolds, who has been selected to hold the Edgar E. and Winifred B. Hartwig Endowed Chair in Soybean Agronomy. Dr. Reynolds is an award-winning professor in my home department — Plant and Soil Sciences — and well deserving of this honor.

Thank you for taking the time to read this month’s letter. If you have any questions, suggestions or concerns about Mississippi State’s research and economic development activities, please feel free to contact me at dshaw@research.msstate.edu.

Go Dawgs!

— David

February 11, 2015

Busy days for research, economic development this spring

As many of you know, Mississippi State has been developing a collaborative relationship with the Universite Internationale de Rabat in Morocco over the past several months, and after a recent visit there, I am very excited about the new research and academic opportunities for our students, faculty and staff. I encourage you to learn more about this partnership at www.msstate.edu/web/media/detail.php?id=7047 and www.international.msstate.edu/research/events/presentations/morocco.pdf.

With the spring semester racing forward, we have been busy in the Office of Research and Economic Development. Please let me take a moment to share a few details with you.


DavidShawHeadshotBlog.jpg

David Shaw is vice president for research and economic development at Mississippi State University.


International Institute awards grants
In addition to the Moroccan initiative, the university’s other international programs continue to grow. Recently, the International Institute awarded 14 grants ranging from $2,500 to $5,000 to support interdisciplinary research and outreach as part of its inaugural International Working Groups program. Successful proposals corresponded closely to four of MSU’s research focus areas: materials science and engineering, natural resources and environmental sustainability, food safety and health, and international development. MSU researchers will team with experts from partner institutions in Africa, Asia, Europe and Latin America on these projects.

Responsible Conduct of Research session this month
The university’s Responsible Conduct of Research live sessions continue with an important seminar this month. A session on “Conducting Research with Human Subjects” will take place on Feb. 19 at 3 p.m. in 115 Franklin Center. Please contact Kacey Strickland, director of the Office of Research Compliance, at 662-325-7474 with any questions about Responsible Conduct of Research. To register for the session and to see the full spring schedule, please visit
https://ssl2.msstate.edu/orc/workshops/loginorc.php/

Spring research seminar series underway
This week, the Research Seminar Series presents “Can One Lab Accident Change the World?” on Thursday at 2:30 p.m. in the Bost Extension Center theater. This panel discussion will explore the repercussions from several recent lab accidents that have taken place around the country, and how these incidents affect individual lives, as well as institutions and agencies. This session will also count for RCR training. Online registration is available at www.research.msstate.edu/workshops and the complete complete series lineup is available online at www.msstate.edu/web/temp/newsfiles/SeminarsSpring2015Web.pdf.

Update from the Human Research Protection Program
Investigators engaged in research with human subjects should be aware of a few updates from MSU’s Human Research Protection Program. First, the project end date an investigator reports on the Institutional Review Board application will now become the expiration date. If needed, the study may be extended -- not to exceed five years. Second, when completing an IRB application, please indicate the external funding source, if any, for the study. This information is important for reporting purposes. Third, if you are interested in having the HRPP staff attend a departmental meeting to talk about human subjects research, please do not hesitate to contact them. And finally, a new training option in myCourses has been added that allows investigators to complete both initial and refresher training. HRPP staff are also available for live training sessions on an as-requested basis. Additional information about the HRPP is online at www.orc.msstate.edu/humansubjects or by calling 662-325-3294.

Kudos and congratulations
I always look forward to sharing success stories about our faculty and staff with you, and here are a few that have crossed my desk:

* Congratulations to Xiaopeng Li, an assistant professor in the Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering, who has been granted a $500,000 CAREER award by the National Science Foundation for his project, “Pathway to a Driverless Highway Transportation System: A Behavior Analysis and Trajectory Control Approach.” The Faculty Early Career Development (CAREER) Program offers the NSF’s most prestigious awards in support of junior faculty who exemplify the role of teacher-scholars through outstanding research, excellent education and the integration of education and research. Well done!

* Kudos to Dan Peterson, director of the Institute for Genomics, Biocomputing and Biotechnology and professor of plant and soil sciences, and Federico Hoffman, an IGBB researcher and assistant professor of biochemistry, molecular biology, entomology and plant pathology, whose work is featured in a recent issue of the prestigious journal Science. Read more about their research and notable publication achievement at www.msstate.edu/web/media/detail.php?id=7049

* Congratulations to Henry Wan, associate professor in the College of Veterinary Medicine, who has been awarded a National Institutes of Health RO1 grant to develop better ways of determining new flu vaccines. Read more about Dr. Wan’s work at www.msstate.edu/web/media/detail.php?id=7058

* Kudos to Patricia Cox, biosafety officer and assistant director of Environmental Health & Safety, who has been elected to the advisory board for Decontamination Professionals International. As a board member, Dr. Cox will provide direction, advice and technical knowledge in the areas of biosafety, decontamination and disinfection, biological weapons of mass destruction, indoor environmental quality and industrial hygiene.

Final words
Thank you for taking the time to read this month’s letter. If you have any questions, suggestions or concerns about Mississippi State’s research and economic development activities, please feel free to contact me at dshaw@research.msstate.edu.

Go Dawgs!

— David

January 16, 2015

New initiatives on horizon with spring semester underway

It is great to be back on campus with a new semester underway. We have a number of initiatives on the horizon in the Office of Research and Economic Development, and I’d like to take a moment to share a few of the details with you.


DavidShawHeadshotBlog.jpg

David Shaw is vice president for research and economic development at Mississippi State University.


Cross-college, collaborative research grants awarded
We are excited to announce the latest recipients of our cross-college, collaborative research grants. This marks the fifth year we have funded these grants, and we are very pleased to be able to provide additional resources that help faculty move their work forward. I appreciate Associate Vice President for Research Drew Hamilton leading this effort. A $2,000 grant to each of the teams will support the initiation of proposals, as well as help enhance multi-disciplinary collaboration of existing projects. Thanks to all who submitted a proposal, and congratulations to our recipients: Frank Adams, Stamatis Agiovlasitis, Peter Allen, Stephanie Bennett, Linkan Bian, Harish Chander, Ron Cossman, Steven Elder, Yuhua Farnell, Masoud Gheisari, Robert Grala, Stacy Haynes, Brien Henry, Trey Howell, Richard Ingram, Kristin Javorsky, Brenda Kirkland, Jun Liao, Hugh Medal, Mabel Okojie, Raj Prabhu, Mark Shankle, Scott Thompson, Kelley Wamsley, Joseph Witt and Tung-Lung Wu.

Momentum building for new Partnership School
As many of you know, I served on the Commission on Starkville Consolidated School District Structure as the Legislature’s mandate to merge the city and county school districts moved forward. While there have been challenges since this process started, I am very optimistic about the many opportunities consolidation will provide students and our community as a whole. It is exciting to see support building for a key component of the consolidation plan: the MSU-Starkville-Oktibbeha CSD 6-7th Grade Partnership School, which is outlined in a news release this week from the Office of Public Affairs at www.msstate.edu/web/media/detail.php?id=7016.

Responsible Conduct of Research session next week
The spring Responsible Conduct of Research live sessions get started on Jan. 21 with Dr. Jan Chambers and a discussion of “Collaborative Research.” The session will be held at 3 p.m. in 115 Franklin Center. Please contact Kacey Strickland, director of the Office of Research Compliance, at 662-325-7474 with any questions about Responsible Conduct of Research. To register for the first session and to see the full spring schedule, please visit
https://ssl2.msstate.edu/orc/workshops/loginorc.php.

Seminar series kicks off in February
After a very successful fall, the Research Seminar Series returns for a spring semester run next month. On Feb. 6, we will host “Professional Development for Research Administrators” at 2:30 p.m. in the Bost Extension Center theater. This panel discussion will feature a number of research administrators from around campus. The complete series lineup is available online at www.msstate.edu/web/temp/newsfiles/SeminarsSpring2015Web.pdf.

International Institute grant program garners interest
In October, I was pleased to see the International Institute launch the International Working Group Grant Program. This competitive seed grant program garnered substantial interest from across campus, according to Jon Rezek, the institute’s interim executive director and interim associate vice president for international programs. Twenty-three proposals were submitted by members of all eight academic colleges. The program is designed to expand Mississippi State’s global profile by stimulating interdisciplinary international research and outreach efforts, particularly collaborative work involving universities and organizations with which the university has formal partnerships. Look for funding announcements later this month.

Kudos and congratulations
I always look forward to sharing success stories about our faculty and staff with you, and here are a few that have crossed my desk:

* Kudos to Robert McMillen, associate director of the Social Science Research Center’s Tobacco Control Unit and associate professor in the Department of Psychology, who earlier this month testified before the New Orleans City Council about the economic impact of smoke-free laws on restaurants and casinos at the request of the American Lung Association.

* Congratulations to Bill Elmore, interim director of the Swalm School of Chemical Engineering, who recently received the 2014 Outstanding Advising Award from the National Academic Advising Association. Read more about this well-deserved recognition at www.bagley.msstate.edu/news/hunter-henry-chair-receives-national-advising-award.

* Kudos to MSU’s newest Certified Research Administrators: Mary Ann Latham, MAFES contract and grants specialist, and Jennifer Easley, director of Sponsored Programs Administration, earned the CRA credential in December.

* Congratulations to Jenny Du, professor in the Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering and Bobby Shackouls Endowed Professorship in the Bagley College of Engineering, who has been named a fellow of the International Society for Optics and Photonics for achievements in optical hyperspectral imaging and analysis in remote sensing.

* Kudos to Jodi Roberts, Mississippi State’s IRB officer and assistant director of Research Compliance, who recently earned the Certified IRB Manager designation. The CIM certification process is designed specifically for professionals who are responsible for oversight of human research protection programs.

* Congratulations to Erin Kiess, the university’s chemical hygiene officer, for achieving the credential of Certified Safety Professional. CSP qualifications are based on professional safety practice in the U.S. The general CSP requirements include education, professional safety experience, demonstrating knowledge of professional safety practice and passing rigorous board exams.

Final words
On Jan. 20, the Moroccan ambassador to the United States, Rachad Bouhlal, will be on campus and speak at a public event in Colvard Student Union’s Fowlkes Auditorium at 3 p.m., and I encourage you to attend his presentation. Read more about his visit at www.msstate.edu/web/media/announcement.php?id=2334.

Thank you for taking the time to read this month’s letter. If you have any questions, suggestions or concerns about Mississippi State’s research and economic development activities, please feel free to contact me at dshaw@research.msstate.edu.

Go Dawgs!

— David

December 3, 2014

Season’s greetings from the Office of Research and Economic Development

Season’s greetings from the Office of Research and Economic Development! We find ourselves near the end of another semester, and what a semester it has been for all of us at Mississippi State University. But before it draws to a close, please let me share a few words with you.


DavidShawHeadshotBlog.jpg

David Shaw is vice president for research and economic development at Mississippi State University.


Research proposals and the upcoming break
I need to begin with a reminder to anyone working on research proposals that may be due during the Mississippi State winter break of Dec. 23-Jan. 2. The Office of Sponsored Programs Administration closes along with the rest of the university, and so if you have a special need for SPA support over the holidays, please coordinate that with SPA Director Jennifer Easley prior to the break. Her e-mail address is jeasley@spa.msstate.edu or call 662-325-3751.

SPA awarding travel grants to upcoming NCURA workshop
Speaking of SPA, the office is providing two travel awards for departmental research administrators at MSU to attend the Departmental Research Administration workshop offered by the National Council of University Research Administrators on Feb. 4-6, 2015, in New Orleans. Each award is $1,500, and should be very close to covering the full cost of this trip. A recipient’s department will be responsible for any remaining travel expenses, and awardees must submit a brief report sharing their learning experience within 30 days of the end of the workshop. The application deadline is 5 p.m. on Dec. 10. Forms are available for download at http://blogs.msstate.edu/ored/SPA-NCURATravelAwardApp.pdf and should be submitted to jeasley@spa.msstate.edu

New partnerships
One of my favorite responsibilities is in developing relationships with other universities, federal agencies and private entities to create new strategic opportunities. For example, this past year many of you had the opportunity to meet with scientists from Argonne National Laboratory. This partnership has now developed to the point that Mississippi State will be hosting a meeting next year for the Joint Center for Energy Storage Research for the entire southeastern region. We are developing similar partnerships with key programs around the nation, as well as internationally, that will make 2015 a very exciting year for our university.

Statewide planning group honors The Mill at MSU
In mid-November, the American Planning Association-Mississippi honored The Mill at MSU’s master plan as the Best Project/Outstanding Project for 2014. A $40-million economic development project, The Mill at MSU is transforming the historic John M. Stone Cotton Mill, formerly MSU's E.E. Cooley Building, into a state-of-the-art conference and meeting complex. Once completed, The Mill will be a 21st century economic asset for the local community and the larger region, and I believe catalyze significant investment and development for years to come.

Mississippi State-developed plant earns Mississippi Medallion
As many of you know, our Office of Technology Management works closely with researchers on campus to facilitate commercialization and licensing. Earlier this fall, a piece of the university’s intellectual property portfolio received statewide recognition. The Delta Jazz crape myrtle, a new crape myrtle that was developed at Mississippi State, received a Mississippi Medallion from the Mississippi Nursery and Landscape Association. The Mississippi Medallion program is designed to increase awareness of plant materials and to promote sales and production of ornamental plants in the state. For additional information about the Delta Jazz crape myrtle, visit http://msucares.com/news/print/sgnews/sg14/sg20141027.html

Kudos and congratulations
Every month, I look forward to sharing success stories about our faculty and staff with you. Here are a few that have crossed my desk over the past few weeks:

* Congratulations to Cyprianna Swiderski, associate professor in the College of Veterinary Medicine, who has been named chair of the Morris Animal Foundation’s Large Animal Scientific Advisory Board. The foundation relies on its board members to review research proposals and select which projects to fund. Read more at http://msucares.com/news/releases/14/nr20141107.html

* Kudos to Chris Snyder, dean of the Shackouls Honors College and professor in the Department of History, who has been named an Affiliated Faculty Member in the Globalising and Localising the Great War Programme at the University of Oxford. He will be conducting research at Oxford in May and June 2015 for his next book, “Gatsby's Oxford: Americans in the City of Dreaming Spires.”

* Congratulations to Diana Outlaw, assistant professor in the Department of Biological Sciences, who has been awarded a $10,000 National Geographic Society Committee for Research and Exploration grant for her proposal titled “Mosquito vectors of avian malaria in Mississippi.”

Final words
During this special time of year, we wish you happy holidays and all the best in the upcoming new year. If you have any questions, suggestions or concerns about Mississippi State’s research and economic development activities, please feel free to contact me at dshaw@research.msstate.edu

Merry Christmas and Go Dawgs!

— David

November 10, 2014

Many reasons to be thankful at Mississippi State this fall

What an exciting time to be a part of the Mississippi State family. From Starkville to Jackson and Washington, D.C. — and every place in between — folks can’t get enough of our top-ranked Bulldogs, and that is drawing favorable attention to so many other aspects of our university, including research and economic development. Please let me take a few minutes to give you an update.


DavidShawHeadshotBlog.jpg

David Shaw is vice president for research and economic development at Mississippi State University.


Collaborative research initiative with ERDC in Vicksburg
Late last month, I joined President Mark Keenum in Vicksburg where he signed an agreement with the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers to create the Institute for Systems Engineering Research at the Engineer Research and Development Center's Information Technology Laboratory. Our partnership will create a hub to develop advanced systems that enhance existing industries, attract new jobs, and bolster national defense capabilities. The collaboration with ERDC will utilize a range of the university's research assets, including our expertise in systems engineering and high performance computing. We are very pleased about opening this new chapter in our decades-long relationship with one of the nation’s premier research centers. For additional information, please see the Office of Public Affairs news release at www.msstate.edu/web/media/detail.php?id=6887

Grants Resource Center information, tools available
Representatives of the Grants Resource Center presented a series of programs in October to introduce MSU faculty and staff to a new tool for learning about and preparing for external funding opportunities. The GRC, a subscription service of the American Association of State Colleges and Universities, provides comprehensive and personalized support in many forms, including databases of sponsor and discipline-specific funding opportunities and funded proposals, agency fact sheets and a faculty alert system for notifying faculty of opportunities and updates. GRC also offers a series of publications for grant seekers, templates and toolkits for research, proposal development and award management, as well as opportunities for professional development, networking and collaboration. If you have questions about this service or would like to learn more, please contact Sponsored Programs Administration director Jennifer Easley or your SPA administrator. You can access the GRC website and MSU’s institutional login credentials through the GRC link on SPA’s website at www.spa.msstate.edu/grc and the GRC website is also accessible directly at www.aascu.org/GRC

SEC visiting faculty travel grants awarded
After carefully reviewing the 19 applications for the 2015 SEC Visiting Faculty Travel Grant Program, my office recently joined the Office of the Executive Vice President and Provost and the Division of Agriculture, Forestry and Veterinary Medicine to announce this year’s recipients from Mississippi State: Todd Archer, assistant professor of small animal medicine; Linkan Bian, assistant professor of industrial and systems engineering; Charles Freeman, School of Human Sciences assistant professor; and Lindsey Peterson, assistant professor of sociology. Each will receive a $2,500 grant intended to enhance faculty collaborations that stimulate scholarly initiatives between SEC universities.

Applications sought for international working group grants
The International Institute is requesting proposals from faculty and research and Extension staff interested in creating interdisciplinary, cross-college international working groups at Mississippi State. Grants will be awarded up to $2,500 and have a 12-month duration. The main goal of this competitive program is to encourage interdisciplinary international research among MSU faculty. A secondary goal of the program is to expand and catalyze established international partnerships. Applications are due Dec. 15. Visit www.msstate.edu/web/memo/story.php?id=2519 for additional information.

Reminder: 'Safety Stand-Down' plan in place for Biosafety Level 2 labs
As I mentioned last month, the White House has directed all federal departments and agencies -- including the USDA, NIH, CDC, FDA, EPA and others -- that operate facilities that possess, use or transfer human, animal or plant infectious agents and toxins and/or recombinant/synthetic nucleic acids to perform a “Safety Stand-Down.” In a continuing effort to meet best practices at Mississippi State, the university is supporting this endeavor via a phased approach in order to ensure that everyone has sufficient time to respond. MSU is requiring all principal investigators who conduct research at Biosafety Level 2 to participate in a phased plan to accomplish the tasks at hand. The deadline for phase one is March 13, 2015, and I ask that you review the information we have posted at http://blogs.msstate.edu/ored/2014/10/safety_standdown_plan_in_place.html

Kudos and congratulations
Every month, I look forward to sharing success stories about our faculty and staff with you. Here are a few that have come to my attention recently:

* Congratulations to Mike Brown, state climatologist and Department of Geosciences professor, who received the National Weather Association’s 2014 Public Education Award for "providing significant contributions to increase the public's weather awareness."

* Kudos to Mississippi State's student chapter of Engineers Without Borders and faculty adviser Dennis Truax, Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering head and professor, who were recognized recently for their work in Zambia. Read more about their outstanding efforts at www.msstate.edu/web/media/detail.php?id=6897

* Congratulations to Terry Amburgey, a retired Giles Distinguished Professor and professor emeritus in the College of Forest Resources, who received the 2014 Award of Merit from the Railway Tie Association for his contributions to the industry and lifetime of service.

Final words
It has been a busy and productive fall at Mississippi State, and we have many reasons to be thankful. As we look forward to a short break at the end of the month, I wish each of you and your families all the best and hope you enjoy a very happy Thanksgiving.

If you have any questions, suggestions or concerns about Mississippi State’s research and economic development activities, please feel free to contact me at dshaw@research.msstate.edu.

Go Dawgs!

— David

October 13, 2014

Memorable fall underway at Mississippi State

Fall is my favorite time of the year, and it is turning out to be a memorable season for all of us at Mississippi State this year. Having a highly ranked football team generates significant interest in so many other aspects of the university, including our economic development and research initiatives like our faculty and students who are developing a safer football helmet. WREG-TV featured their work a few weeks ago, and you can find the report online at http://wreg.com/2014/09/25/mississippi-state-university-tackles-football-concussions-builds-safer-helmets

Please let me take a moment to update you about a few of our recent activities.


DavidShawHeadshotBlog.jpg

David Shaw is vice president for research and economic development at Mississippi State University.


Experts to lead research funding resources overview
As most of you know, the funding environment for research has never been more competitive. My office is committed to providing faculty and staff the resources needed to successfully meet this challenge. Later this month, we will host a two-day visit by program advisors from the Grants Resource Center, a unit of the American Association of State Colleges and Universities. Sessions will cover a range of funding issues, and experts will also be available for private consultations to provide guidance on best-fit grant opportunities for your projects. To sign up for a one-on-one, 15-minutes slot to discuss your project on Oct. 29 from 2:30-4:30 p.m. or Oct. 30 from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m., please contact Lynn Taylor at ltaylor@research.msstate.edu or 662-325-3168. Additional information about this visit is online at www.research.msstate.edu/rresources/news.php?id=3691

'Safety Stand-Down' planned for Biosafety Level 2 labs
Many of you have received an email from Vice President for Agriculture, Forestry and Veterinary Medicine Greg Bohach and myself about the U.S. government’s “Safety Stand-Down.” In light of recent biosafety and biosecurity incidents at federal laboratories, the White House has directed all federal departments and agencies -- including the USDA, NIH, CDC, FDA, EPA and others — that operate facilities that possess, use or transfer human, animal or plant infectious agents and toxins and/or recombinant/synthetic nucleic acids to perform a “Safety Stand-Down.” In a continuing effort to meet best practices at Mississippi State, Dr. Bohach and I are supporting this endeavor via a phased approach in order to ensure that everyone has sufficient time to respond. MSU is requiring all principal investigators who conduct research at Biosafety Level 2 to participate in a phased plan to accomplish the tasks at hand. The deadline for phase one is March 13, 2015, and I ask that you review the information we have posted at http://blogs.msstate.edu/ored/2014/10/safety_standdown_plan_in_place.html

Excellent export compliance presentation now online
In September, Will Mackie, a senior attorney with the U.S. Department of Justice's National Security Division, visited Mississippi State and delivered a very important presentation about the absolute necessity of export control compliance. Mr. Mackie gained notoriety for the successful prosecution of a Tennessee professor and a high-technology defense contractor for violating terms of the Arms Export Control Act, and his insight into this issue is second to none. If you weren’t able to attend his presentation, I invite you to visit www.research.msstate.edu/rresources and click on the link titled “Will Mackie Presentation: Export Control Laws, Technical Data and Academic Research Projects.” If you need additional information, please contact MSU’s Office of Research Security at www.ors.msstate.edu

NIH emphasizing individual development plans
In an effort to better prepare students and postdocs to participate successfully in a broad-based and evolving research-related economy, the National Institutes of Health strongly encourages institutions to develop and use individual development plans, or IDPs, for grad students and postdoctoral research supported by NIH awards regardless of their position or title. IDPs provide a structure for the identification and achievement of career goals. NIH progress reports submitted on or after Oct. 17 must include a report on the use of IDPs. For more information, please visit the Office of Research Compliance website at www.orc.msstate.edu or contact Kacey Strickland at 662-325-7474 or kstrickland@research.msstate.edu

Deadline nears for cross-college grant program
As I’ve mentioned, we are again soliciting proposals from faculty who desire to create interdisciplinary, cross-college research groups on campus. This program has been a very popular research facilitation tool, and one that has demonstrated a strong return on our investment. The deadline to submit a funding proposal through the appropriate associate dean for research is Oct. 17, and you may find additional details and submission information at www.research.msstate.edu/rresources/news.php?id=3623

Kudos and congratulations
Every month, I look forward to sharing success stories about our faculty and staff with you. Here are a few that have come to my attention recently:

* Congratulations to Heather Jordan, a new assistant professor in the Department of Biological Sciences, who has been awarded funding from the National Institute of Justice for $843,376. Her three-year proposal is studying the utilization of microbial structure and function in investigations of criminal justice.

* Kudos to Center for Safety and Health Program Manager Davern Jones and Industrial Hygienist Steven Holman for earning Certified Safety Professional designations. CSP qualifications are based on professional safety practice in the U.S., and requirements for the credential include education, professional safety experience, demonstrating knowledge of professional safety practice, and passing a comprehensive exam.

* Congratulations to Kevin Hunt, professor in the Department of Wildlife, Fisheries and Aquaculture and director of the Human Dimensions and Conservation Law Enforcement Laboratory, who has been reappointed to the Recreational Boating and Fishing Foundation’s board of directors. It is another example of our faculty’s outstanding national reputation.

* Kudos to David Thompson, professor in the Department of Aerospace Engineering and associate director of the Center for Advanced Vehicular Systems, who has received a prestigious Distinguished Visiting Fellowship from the Royal Academy of Engineering. The program’s goal is to help universities in the United Kingdom build capacity and promote collaborations by facilitating visits by distinguished international experts.

* Congratulations to Sead “Sejo” Sabanadzovic, professor in the Department of Biochemistry, Molecular Biology, Entomology and Plant Pathology, who has been elected to the International Committee on Taxonomy of Viruses’ executive committee. Dr. Sabanadzovic is the only plant virologist from the U.S. serving on the committee, and his election speaks highly of Mississippi State’s reputation in the international plant virology community.

* Kudos to principal investigator Tommy Morris, associate professor in the Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering and associate director of the Distributed Analytics and Security Institute, and his team for their work to develop a Relay Settings Automation program for Entergy Corp. With this software, a process that takes four to six hours to complete manually can be performed electronically in less than a minute. Team members include students Travis Green, Srilalita Neti, Jeff Hsu, Quinton Grice, Joseph Johnson, Stefan Lewis; research associates Angie Card and Greg Henley; and Mike Mazzola, professor and endowed chair in the Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering. Read more about this innovative project at www.bagley.msstate.edu/news/bcoe-partners-with-entergy-to-develop-new-software

* Welcome home to Stephen Brain and Stephen Cottrell. An associate professor in the Department of History, Dr. Brain has returned from a yearlong Fulbright Fellowship in Rostov-on-Don, Russia. He and his family lived and worked just 30 miles from the Ukraine border while he conducted research and taught at Southern Federal University. As a consequence of his experience, Dr. Brain will be co-writing a book focused on Soviet leaderships' commitment to "green" and leading a study abroad program to Russia this summer. Dr. Cottrell, director of MSU's Office of International Engagement, and his family recently returned from Nha Trang, Vietnam, after a yearlong Fulbright teaching scholarship. While there, they had the opportunity to travel throughout the nation and visit Cambodia. As a result of his trip, a functioning MOU with Nha Trang University is in development and several academically gifted students have applied to Mississippi State.

Final words
If you’ve spent any time in the Research Park recently, you couldn’t have missed all of the construction. C Spire’s data center is now open, and the new sidewalk around the one-mile Research Boulevard loop is finished. The sidewalk was a top request from many of our tenants in the park, and we are pleased that this additional amenity is available to them, as well as to the local community. We are also looking forward to the installation of three shuttle stop shelters on the boulevard in the coming weeks.

If you have any questions, suggestions or concerns about Mississippi State’s research and economic development activities, please feel free to contact me at dshaw@research.msstate.edu

Go Dawgs!

— David

October 6, 2014

'Safety Stand-Down' plan in place for labs

Many of you have received an email from Vice President for Agriculture, Forestry and Veterinary Medicine Greg Bohach and myself about the U.S. government's "Safety Stand-Down."

In light of three recent biosafety and biosecurity incidents at federal laboratories, the White House has directed all federal departments and agencies — including the USDA, NIH, CDC, FDA, EPA and others — that operate facilities that possess, use or transfer human, animal or plant infectious agents and toxins and/or recombinant/synthetic nucleic acids to perform a “Safety Stand-Down.”

In a continuing effort to meet best practices at Mississippi State, Dr. Bohach and I are supporting this endeavor via a phased approach in order to ensure that everyone has sufficient time to respond. MSU is requiring all principal investigators who conduct research at Biosafety Level 2 to participate in a phased plan to accomplish the tasks at hand.

The complete plan including documentation forms and guidance will be released by mid-October so that PIs can begin the tasks at hand. A brief overview of the planned activities in phase one include:

— A sweep of all areas used to store human, animal or plant infectious agents and toxins and/or recombinant/synthetic nucleic acids including cabinets, drawers, shelves, refrigerators, freezers, etc. This sweep would also include any carcasses/tissues containing potentially infectious agents. All of the above described biohazardous material should be identified, inventoried and destroyed if no longer needed or is unidentifiable.

— A review of all biosafety and biosecurity procedures including work practices and inventory management programs.

— A review of training with all study personnel.

— Brainstorm activities on how to enhance the facility biosafety culture.

The deadline for this phase is March 13, 2015.

The second phase will be the release of a comprehensive on-line biosafety training course by early fall in 2015. The online course will allow efficiency in that researchers and students can complete the training at a time that is convenient for the individual. The biosafety officer is always available to provide customized live training for a particular group upon request.

Department heads are encouraged to ask all Biosafety Level 1 labs to also participate.

This will be an excellent opportunity to clean out and clean up your labs, and with plans to open a BSL-3 lab at the College of Veterinary Medicine, this will demonstrate MSU’s effort in promoting safe and secure practices in laboratory facilities while protecting workers and the public, and preventing potential damage to plant and animal health. As always, the biosafety office and Institutional Biosafety Committee are available to help and answer any questions.

Dr. Bohach and I appreciate your efforts in helping to make MSU a safe and healthy environment in which to work.

David Shaw
Vice President for Research and Economic Development

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