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ORAU awards 36 research grants for 2019-2020 academic year to junior faculty at its member universities

OAK RIDGE, Tenn. — ORAU has awarded competitive research grants totaling $180,000 to 36 junior faculty from its member institutions. The annual grants are made through the company’s 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 2019-2020 academic year to enhance their research during the early stages of their careers. Each recipient’s institution 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 734 grants totaling more than $3.4 million. Including the matching funds from member institutions, ORAU has facilitated grants worth more than $6.9 million.

“The Powe Awards program benefits our member universities and is always extremely popular, because it provides an opportunity for young faculty members to further their research careers and helps them identify potential funding avenues,” said Arlene Garrison, ORAU Vice President, University Partnerships Office. “ORAU is proud to recognize the research and professional growth of these emerging leaders as they support the future of science and technology.”

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.

The awards, now in their 29th 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. He died in 1996.

Recipients of the Ralph E. Powe Junior Faculty Enhancement Awards for the 2019-2020 academic year are listed below:

2019-2020 Ralph E. Powe Junior Faculty Enhancement Award Winners
Award Recipient Member Institution
Mridul Aanjaneya Rutgers University
Fadi Abdeljawad Clemson University
Irfan Ahmed Virginia Commonwealth University
Mustafa Aksoy University at Albany
Netz Arroyo Johns Hopkins University
Rana Ashkar Virginia Tech
Adam Aurisano University of Cincinnati
Leilani Battle University of Maryland
April Becker University of North Texas
Muyinatu Bell Johns Hopkins University
Suzanne Birner Berea College
Jennifer Bridwell-Rabb University of Michigan
Shiwang Cheng Michigan State University
Xiangyang Dong Missouri University of Science and Technology
Erica Edwards Wayne State University
Tanvir Faisal University of Louisiana at Lafayette
Yunlong Feng University at Albany
Xiaodan Gu University of Southern Mississippi
Yujie Hu University of South Florida
Jyoti Katoch Carnegie Mellon University
Yong Lin Kong University of Utah
Joel Lewis George Washington University
Chengyu Li Villanova University
Fangqiong Ling Washington University in St. Louis
James McKone University of Pittsburgh
Jaewon Oh Appalachian State University
Ashley Pagnotta College of Charleston
Mikail Rubinov Vanderbilt University
Brett Savoie Purdue University
Stanley Snelson Florida Institute of Technology
Thomas Theis North Carolina State University
Tuo Wang Louisiana State University
Shuo Wang West Virginia University
Tiffany Weinkopff University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences
Ruijie Zeng Utah State University
Hanyu Zhu Rice University

Learn more about fellowships, awards and grants offered by ORAU.

About ORAU

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 150 colleges and universities, 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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