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2012 Ralph E. Powe Junior Faculty Awards

ORAU awards 30 research grants for 2012-2013 academic year to junior faculty at its consortium member universities

May 2, 2012

OAK RIDGE, Tenn.—ORAU has awarded competitive research grants totaling $150,000 to 30 junior faculty from ORAU member institutions. The annual grants are made through the Ralph E. Powe Junior Faculty Enhancement Awards program that provides funds to enrich the research and professional growth of young faculty.

The recipients, each of whom is in the first two years of a tenure track position, will receive $5,000 in “seed money” for the 2012-2013 academic year to enhance their research during the early stages of their career. Each recipient’s institution also matches the ORAU award with an additional $5,000, making the total prize worth $10,000 for each winner. Winners may use the grants to purchase equipment, continue research or travel to professional meetings and conferences.

Since the program’s inception, ORAU has awarded nearly 500 grants totaling more than $2.3 million. Including the matching funds from member institutions, ORAU has facilitated grants worth more than $4.4 million.

“The Powe awards recognize young faculty who want to establish research credentials and compete for new funding opportunities,” said Dr. Arlene A. Garrison, ORAU vice president of University Partnerships. “By supporting the research efforts of these emerging academic leaders, we are making a direct investment in the future of science and education in our country.”

The awards recognize faculty members for their work in any of five science and technology disciplines: engineering or applied science; life sciences; mathematics and computer science; physical sciences; and policy, management or education.

Recipients of the Ralph E. Powe Junior Faculty Enhancement Awards for the 2012-2013 academic year are listed below:

2012-13 Ralph E. Powe Junior Faculty Enhancement Award Winners
Award Recipient Sponsoring Institution
J. Rosie Appalachian State University
Nico Hotz Duke University
Jae Jung East Carolina University
Chunlei Liang George Washington University
James McKinlay Indiana University
Lisa Kaufman Indiana University
Michal Brylinski Louisiana State University
Durdu Guney Michigan Technological University
Xiaodong Yang Missouri University of Science and Technology
Linyou Cao North Carolina State University
Walter Weare North Carolina State University
Toby Nelson Oklahoma State University
Thushari Jayasekera Southern Illinois University at Carbondale
Jennifer Dworak Southern Methodist University
Le Xie Texas A&M University
Yong Chen Texas Tech University
Brian Fisher University of Alabama
Deb Jaisi University of Delaware
Rebecca Butcher University of Florida
Ribhu Kaul University of Kentucky
Hongxiang Li University of Louisville
Mark Running University of Louisville
Emil Geiger University of Nevada, Reno
Paul Leu University of Pittsburgh
Jason Hattrick-Simpers University of South Carolina
Guangbin Dong University of Texas at Austin
Gregory Walsh Virginia Commonwealth University
Amanda Morris Virginia Tech
John Fortner Washington University
Emily Martin Wayne State University

The awards, now in their 22nd year, are named for Ralph E. Powe, who served as the ORAU councilor from Mississippi State University for 16 years. Powe participated in numerous committees and special projects during his tenure and was elected chair of ORAU’s Council of Sponsoring Institutions prior to his death in 1996.

ORAU plans to offer the Ralph E. Powe Junior Faculty Enhancement Awards program again for the 2013-2014 academic year. Faculty members at ORAU sponsoring institutions who are within two years of their initial tenure-track appointments as assistant professors are eligible to apply. The deadline to apply is Jan. 11, 2013.

For more information on fellowships, awards and grants offered by ORAU, visit or contact Ann Farler at (865) 576-1898,

ORAU provides innovative scientific and technical solutions to advance national priorities in science, education, security and health. Through specialized teams of experts, unique laboratory capabilities and access to a consortium of more than 100 major Ph.D.-granting institutions, ORAU works with federal, state, local and commercial customers to advance national priorities and serve the public interest. A 501(c)(3) nonprofit corporation and federal contractor, ORAU manages the Oak Ridge Institute for Science and Education (ORISE) for the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE).

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