April 2015 CPI News and Updates

Included in this issue:   

  • Update from Dr. Mary Bryk, CPI Chair
  • Upcoming CPI Executive Committee meetings
  • 2nd Texas A&M ENG-LIFE Workshop – April 24, 2015, receiving abstracts until April 12th
  • Update from Sponsored Research Services (SRS)
  • Update from Texas A&M University Institute for Advanced Study
  • Multi-disciplinary Research Project Establishment – Texas A&M University
  • Announcing 2016 Faculty Scholars Competition
  • NSF Mock Review Panel Demonstration – April 22nd
  • SAVE THE DATE: SORC – NIH Training IBC 101 – April 24, 2015
  • I-Corps Lunch and Learn – Thursday, April 16th
  • Sign up for notifications about Limited Submission Proposal (LSP) opportunities
  • Texas A&M Information Technology’s new IT.tamu.edu website now live
  • Bulletin for Principal Investigators – Issued weekly by the Division of Research, Texas A&M University
  • Upcoming Seminars and Workshops for Texas A&M Researchers

  

Update from Dr. Mary Bryk, CPI Chair
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To aid the CPI in bringing items to the attention of the administration, please send any broad research-related issues (and subsequent solutions) to my attention at cpi@tamu.edu or contact me directly at bryk@tamu.edu or 979.862.2294.

May 13th CPI meeting and suggestions for upcoming meeting schedule

At the May 13, 2015 CPI meeting, Dr. Bill McCutchen, Executive Associate Director of Texas A&M AgriLife Research, will discuss current research activities and new research initiatives at AgriLife Research, and Dr. Dimitris Lagoudas, Sr. Associate Dean for Research, College of Engineering, Deputy Director for the Texas A&M Engineering Experiment Station, and Associate Vice Chancellor for Engineering Research, will discuss current research activities and new initiatives throughout TEES. Mr. Scott Honea, Interim Associate Vice President for Information Technology and Chief Information Officer at Texas A&M University will provide an update on the information technology units at Texas A&M.  To see the full CPI schedule for the next three months, go to cpi.tamu.edu/meetings/2014-15.

As noted in a March 27th email to the CPI’s PI listserv, suggestions are welcome for updates/reports that may be of interest to the broader PI community for future CPI meetings, or if you have other research-related issues you would like to bring to the attention of the CPI, please send an email anytime to me (bryk@tamu.edu) or to Jason Whisenant (jwhisenant@tamu.edu).

PIs can also engage their elected CPI representative(s) to bring forward college/unit level research-related issues that might be addressed with the appropriate administrative office(s) in the college/unit (click here for the list of CPI members by college/unit).

As a reminder, meetings are webcast live at ttvn.tamu.edu/webcasts on Channel 20, and videos are stored on the “Archives” section of the CPI website

Summary of CPI Executive Committee meetings
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The CPI Executive Committee (EC) met for its monthly coordination meeting on April 1st with invited research administrators from the Texas A&M Health Science Center, Texas A&M University, Texas A&M AgriLife Research, TTI, and TEES. Mr. Michael O’Quinn, Vice President for Government Relations, participated in the meeting by conference call.

Dr. Bryk noted the SRS roles and responsibilities committee that she, Dr. Andrews-Polymenis, Dr. Bangerth and Dr. Grunlan serve on has met nine times this spring to review and to assign over 400 various roles in research administration to the appropriate entity. There is now an effort to identify problems, identify best practices and develop service-level agreements that will define expectations. Two deficiencies that some PIs have experienced are related to customer service and responsiveness/communication. These issues and others experienced by stakeholders will be identified in an upcoming meeting.

Dr. Penny Riggs, Chair of the Research Development Fund Advisory Committee (RDF-AC), provided an overview of the committee’s efforts to date. The committee has met several times since it has been appointed, and also added another member from the College of Engineering, Dr. Arum Han. The committee is moving quickly and is working well together with one mindset of finalizing an RFP to distribute in April. Dr. Riggs provided an overview of the process by which the RDF-AC was formed, and noted that the committee may seek input from external reviewers for areas that fall outside the expertise of the committee.

Mr. O’Quinn provided an appropriations update to the EC and noted that both the Texas House of Representatives and Senate are recommending increases for higher education and specifically for the Texas A&M campus, Texas A&M HSC and Texas A&M at Galveston. In addition, attendees reviewed the April 8th and May 13th CPI full meeting schedules and solicited agenda items for upcoming EC meetings with the Texas A&M and the A&M System administration.

The next CPI Executive Committee meeting with Dr. Mark Hussey and Dr. Karan Watson is scheduled for 1:30 p.m. after the full CPI meeting on April 8th. The next CPI EC meeting with Chancellor Sharp is scheduled for April 13, 2015, and the next monthly coordination meeting with research administration representatives from AgriLife, HSC, Texas A&M, TEES and TTI will be on May 6, 2015.  Summaries of these meetings will be provided in the May newsletter.

2nd Texas A&M ENG-LIFE Workshop – April 24, 2015, receiving abstracts until April 12th
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The Texas A&M research community is invited to the 2nd Texas A&M ENG-LIFE workshop on April 24th (Friday from 8:00 a.m. – 4:30 p.m.) at the Texas A&M Health Science Center campus on Highway 47. Following the successful workshop in the fall of 2013 where more than 120 participants attended, the organizing committee (see below) hopes this event will bring together researchers from diverse disciplines, promoting multidisciplinary interaction and scientific communication in the field of engineering and life sciences. The workshop flyer can be found at cpi.tamu.edu/resources/eng_life_workshop/.

The deadline for abstracts for poster presentations has been extended to April 12th. This will be a great opportunity to showcase individual research and provide a mechanism for students and researchers in different fields to engage each another. Although there is no registration fee, registration is still required. The featured speaker will be announced soon. More information can be found at http://biomems.tamu.edu/eng-life/.   

ENG-LIFE 2015 Organizing Committee:

Dr. Arum Han – Electrical and Computer Engineering

Dr. Paul Hardin – Biology

Dr. Arul Jayaraman – Chemical Engineering

Dr. Allison C. Rice-Fitch – Texas A&M Health Science Center (TAMHSC)

Dr. Jane Welsh – Veterinary Medicine & Biomedical Sciences, Texas A&M Institute for Neuroscience (TAMIN)

Update from Sponsored Research Services (SRS)
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Cost Transfers Involving Sponsored Projects: The CROI committee established a subcommittee to develop one process for approving/tracking payroll and other non-payroll expenses. The Cost Transfers Involving Sponsored Projects procedure is effective April 6, 2015.  Read more about it here: https://srs.tamus.edu/updates/#cost.

Contact:

Dr. Jim Joyce, Customer Service Liaison – jrjoyce@tamus.edu, 979-458-5852

Ms. Stacey Rugh, Communications Manager – srugh@tamus.edu, 979-458-8760

Update from the Texas A&M University Institute for Advanced Study
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The Texas A&M University Institute for Advanced Study creates a streamlined structure for moving our academic programs to the top tier of universities and to a position of global academic and research leadership.  The Institute’s internal advisory board is a crucial part of that structure, for it is responsible for evaluating nominees for recruiting. 

The internal advisory board, comprised of nine University Distinguished Professors, has completed its review of the nominees from the various colleges, the Health Science Center, and the Texas A&M School of Law, and has approved a subset of them for recruiting as Faculty Fellows of the Institute for the 2015-2016 academic year. 

Nominees have to meet a very high standard to be approved for recruiting.  At a minimum the approved nominee must be in a national academy or be of equivalent stature in his or her field.  Approved nominees are commonly members of multiple academies and are recipients of the highest awards.

Last year four outstanding scholars who were approached to be Faculty Fellows of the Institute could not come during this academic year, but wanted to be considered for 2015-2016.  Negotiations are underway with these scholars.  In addition, the Institute’s internal advisory board approved 16 of 22 nominees for recruiting, and negotiations with these 16 are underway.  Since these very accomplished scholars have many research programs in progress where they are, in addition to personal considerations, they are not always capable of moving to Texas A&M for extended stays in residence.  With a historical success rate in the neighborhood of 50% for recruiting Faculty Fellows, the 2015-2016 class will likely be the largest so far. 

The Institute extends a special thank you for the increased participation by the colleges in submitting nominations.  Such efforts will pay off in an enhanced quality environment for students and faculty.

Contact:

Ms. Lisa Jordan – l-jordan@tamu.edu, 979.458.7988

Multi-disciplinary Research Project Establishment – Texas A&M University
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The guideline “Multi-disciplinary Research Project Establishment”, has been approved by the Vice President for Research at Texas A&M, to ensure that proper credit and fiscal authority is given to you, the Principal Investigators, and to your respective Department and Colleges on sponsored projects administered by the Texas A&M System Sponsored Research Services (SRS) on behalf of Texas A&M University. This guideline was developed by the Texas A&M Multi-disciplinary Accounting Committee (T-MAC), which included representatives from URC, CPI, SRS and VPR staff. The Texas A&M Council of Deans is supportive of implementing this guideline and has already made the recommendation to SRS. This guideline can also be found on the Division of Research webpage at https://vpr.tamu.edu/researchadmin/multi-disciplinary-research-project-establishment

 

Announcing 2016 Faculty Scholars Competition
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The Simons Foundation, the Howard Hughes Medical Institute, and the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation recently announced their 2016 Faculty Scholars Competition, a national competition for grants to outstanding early-career scientists.  The deadline for applications is July 28, 2015, at 2 p.m. 

NSF Mock Review Panel Demonstration – April 22nd at 2:30 p.m.
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In coordination with Dr. Andreea Trache, Research Development Services will present a National Science Foundation (NSF) Mock Review Panel on April 22 at 2:30 p.m., in Rudder Tower, Room 401. Registration closes at noon on April 22. Texas A&M researchers who have served on NSF review panels will provide attendees an informed perspective on how review panels are conducted at the NSF and what panelists look for when they discuss and assess proposals. After the demonstration, attendees are invited to participate in an open Q&A session with the mock panelists. The panelists are:

  • ·         Dr. Paul de Figueiredo, associate professor, Department of Microbial Pathogenesis and Immunology, College of Medicine.
  • ·         Dr. Geoffrey Kapler, professor and chair, Department of Molecular and Cellular Medicine, College of Medicine.
  • ·         Dr. Kathryn Ryan, assistant professor, Department of Biology, College of Science.
  • ·         Dr. Andreea Trache, associate professor, Department of Medical Physiology, College of Medicine, who will also serve as the program director for the mock panel demonstration.

Contact:

Mr. Jason Whisenant – jwhisenant@tamu.edu, 979.458.1861

SAVE THE DATE: SORC – NIH Training IBC 101 – April 24, 2015
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The NIH will provide a training opportunity, “IBC 101” in College Station on April 24, 2015 from 8:30 a.m. – 12:00 p.m. at the Annenberg Presidential Conference Center. The training is open to anyone and will cover most of the information found in the NIH Guidelines. Seating is limited to 150. To RSVP, email Dr. Bruce Whitney at brucewhitney@tamus.edu.  

I-Corps Lunch and Learn – Thursday, April 16th 
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Please join us for a luncheon on April 16 here on campus to introduce research faculty to the NSF’s I-Corps Program. The Center for New Ventures and Entrepreneurship in the Mays Business School, along with the College of Engineering, is a member of the SW Node for I-Corps, and is available to help researchers explore opportunities for funding and support from NSF: http://swicorps.org/

We will be hosting an I-Corps lunch-and-learn at the University Club Mezzanine on Thurs April 16 between Noon-2:30p and are inviting all NSF researchers across campus to come learn more about the program. We will have I-Corps leadership provide details on the program, along with TAMU faculty members who have participated in I-Corps in the past.

Here is a link to the luncheon invitation & details: https://www.eventbrite.com/e/nsf-i-corps-lunch-learn-april-16th-tickets-16128158757. Please feel free to forward the link to any researchers or graduate students who might be interested in learning more about I-Corps.

Contact:

Mr. Blake Petty – blakepetty@tamu.edu, 979.845.4882

Sign up for notifications about Limited Submission Proposal opportunities
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The list of current Limited Submission Proposal (LSP) opportunities, maintained by the Division of Research, is available at https://u.tamu.edu/LSP.

To receive notifications about new LSP opportunities as soon as they are announced, email Ms. Shelly Martin at shelly.martin@tamu.edu  

Texas A&M Information Technology’s new IT.tamu.edu website now live
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Texas A&M Information Technology redesigned the IT.tamu.edu website with new content and a new organizational structure. The goal of the redesign was to pull content spread across many different websites into one central location, making it easier for visitors to find everything they need on one site.

Texas A&M IT invites you to visit the new site. You will find information on service details, help resources and service costs all at your fingertips. Feedback can be sent to it-coms@tamu.edu.

In the months ahead, Texas A&M IT will begin taking down departmental websites such as cis.tamu.edu, telecom.tamu.edu and others. Plenty of notice will be given before these sites are taken down so site owners will have time to update links or change contact information.  Texas A&M IT provides IT services and resources that support the academic and research pursuits of The Texas A&M University System.

Mr. Scott Honea, Interim Associate Vice President for Information Technology and Chief Information Officer at Texas A&M University, will provide an update on information technology units at Texas A&M at the May 13th CPI meeting. 

Bulletin for Principal Investigators – Issued weekly by the Division of Research, Texas A&M University
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The Division of Research at Texas A&M University issues a brief weekly bulletin for Principal Investigators that highlights research accomplishments and projects, funding opportunities, honors and promotions, workshops, and other items that may be of interest to the PI community.

Click here to subscribe or unsubscribe to the bulletin. Click here to submit items for consideration for an upcoming bulletin.

Upcoming Seminars and Workshops for Texas A&M Researchers
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The Division of Research (DOR) offers seminars and workshops throughout the year relating to professional development in research proposal planning and writing. All of these events are coordinated by Research Development Services (RDS), a DOR unit providing a wide range of support to Texas A&M researchers. The new RDS calendar can be found at vpr.tamu.edu/researchdevelopment/calendars/events/