By Steve Vivona
April is Research Month at St. John's and the Center for
Teaching and Learning and the Office of the Provost are sponsoring
several events to celebrate the research of both the faculty and
students of St. John's University. On April 1 the first ever
Faculty Research Forum was held, allowing faculty and students to
showcase their work to their peers.
On the same day the 15th Annual Reception for Grant Recipients
was held, celebrating those whose research had secured new grants
or continued funding from external sources to further the mission
of the University.
Associate Provost Dr. Willard Gingerich told the gathering that
for the 2003-04 academic year (as of April 1) St. John's University
faculty received more than $7.1 million in grant funds. For the
academic year 2002-03 St. John's received more than $8 million. He
noted that funding amounts had reached a plateau in recent years
but was expecting "some major breakthroughs," that would push
funding amounts over $10 million.
"I encourage you to redouble your efforts," Dr. Gingerich told
the assembly. "And extend your experience and activity to your
colleagues." He added, "I encourage each of you to think of
yourselves as trainers because in this grant business there is a
critical mass question both within departments and schools and
within the University."
Dr. Gingerich explained that the grant process is an arduous one
for all those who apply whether they receive funding or not. "It is
one of your responsibilities to your colleagues to help them
understand and believe in this (grant) process." He added, "This is
not a lottery, and those of you who are here are testimony to
There are those who may be discouraged by the process and Dr.
Gingerich stressed the need for all faculty present to show them
what is possible. "I hope you will carry that word out - that with
smart planning, good consultation and persistence you can achieve a
The total number of funded grants for St. John's has increased,
as has the number of submissions, Dr. Gingerich noted. This year
two awards were given out for research and programming. "At St.
John's it's very important to get empowerment not just for
individual research activities or team research activities but for
program development and program support. It's fundamental to that
edge of excellence that we really aspire to, and we want to
encourage that kind of grant activity."
Dr. Barbara Nelson, Associate Dean, The School of Education, was
honored for the Transition to Teaching Project, which encouraged
new teachers to enter the profession. Dr. Nelson is responsible for
securing over $1 million in funding, Dr. Gingerich noted. Professor
Elizabeth Brondolo, Department of Psychology, was honored for her
consistent success in securing research grant support for St.
John's, and Dr. Gingerich noted she is responsible for securing
over $3 million in funding.