As vice president for research and economic development, I have the opportunity to observe and sometimes be part of the continuing growth in research at Mason. I am pleased to be able to mention a number of activities in 2010 that reflect the commitment Mason has made to expanding its research base.
Construction was completed on a $48.3 million state-of-the-art research facility on the Prince William Campus that will allow our infectious disease researchers to conduct research in a bio-safety level three facility. This building was partially funded by a $27.7 million grant from the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, a part of the National Institutes of Health.
Mason also received $44 million in Recovery Act funding to support research and, of that amount, $28.5 million was for a single award. That award, funded in fall 2010 by a U.S. Department of Education public–private partnership funding program, will have a significant influence on improving primary and secondary science education throughout Virginia.
As you will see in the Technology Transfer section, we have launched an innovative approach for technology development.
At Mason, a significant portion of our federally funded projects are funded by the Department of Defense and often that funding is used to support highly technical work. In this year’s magazine, we include a section that describes some of our faculty research that directly affects members of our military. As you will see, the work of the faculty in these projects crosses disciplines and colleges.
We also have highlighted several other topical areas that allow us to share the work of faculty in a broad spectrum of disciplines. For example, in the Place section, we feature the internationally renowned criminologist David Weisburd and describe Sheryl Beach and her graduate student’s work that extrapolates their findings about glaciers in Iceland to the terrain on Mars. In the Youth section, you will learn of Patricia Maulden’s work with child soldiers and have the opportunity to read about how Kevin Clark is teaching inner-city students to learn science using game technology. Finally, in our Looking at the Past section, we share the cutting-edge work of our Center for History and New Media with digital history and include surprising information about the work our provost, Peter Stearns, continues to do in his field of social history.
The magazine provides summaries of recent funding, which has surpassed the $100 million level and continues to rise. In addition, we have added a new section this year that highlights technologies at Mason. We also proudly announce the winners of the annual Emerging Researcher, Scholar, Creator Awards: Courtney Brkic, Nicole Darnell, and Jessica Rosenberg.
Roger R. Stough