WMU received nearly $2 million in externally funded awards in April

contact: Mark Schwerin
| WMU News

KALAMAZOO, Mich.—Western Michigan University garnered nearly $2 million in grants in April, WMU trustees learned at their June 3 meeting.

Grants for research led the way, passing the $1.3 million mark, while grants for public service climbed past $547,779. Grants for academic support came in at $53,700, bringing the grand total of fiscal-year-to-date externally funded awards to $26,923,255. May and June grants are still to be added before the June 30 end of the year.

Notable grants

The largest research grant, $923,700 from the U.S. Department of Transportation, will provide supplemental support for the Transportation Research Center for Livable Communities established last year at WMU in cooperation with four other universities. The work is being carried out by a multidisciplinary team of researchers headed by Dr. Jun-Seok Oh, professor of civil and construction engineering and the grant's principal investigator, and Dr. Osama Abudayyeh, professor and chair of the Department of Civil and Construction Engineering and associate dean of the College of Engineering and Applied Sciences.

Other key members include Dr. Valerian Kwigizile, assistant professor of civil and construction engineering, Dr. Richard Long, professor of blindness and low vision studies and associate dean of the College of Health and Human Services, Dr. Ron Van Houten, professor of psychology and Dr. Benjamin Ofori-Amoah, chair of geography. Other departments involved in the project include computer science, geography and urban planning and special education.

A new research grant of $158,906 from the Federal Aviation Administration through Texas A&M University was awarded to a trio of researchers led by Lori J. Brown, assistant professor of aviation sciences along with Dr. William Rantz, professor of aviation sciences, and Dr. Geoffrey Richard Whitehurst, associate professor of aviation. The grant will be used to assess the feasibility of agile, low latency cockpit weather alerts for identifying hazardous weather with minimal pilot analysis.

Public service grants were led by a $214,200 award from Grand Valley State University to provide no cost business consulting, secondary research and low cost training to small businesses throughout seven counties in southwest Michigan.

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