The Regent Scholar program provides one-time grants to individual faculty or to campus programs working in conjunction with students who undertake innovative and collaborative undergraduate research projects. These projects should have the potential to lead to job creation and economic development, and foster entrepreneurship. In terms of focus, they may have an emphasis in science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) or include pursuits in any of the academic disciplines, including arts, humanities, or professional studies. The 2016 program will provide three awards of up to $50,000 each.
In mid-2013, the REDI Committee passed a resolution asking that opportunities be identified to reward faculty members who engage in activities related to research, economic development, and innovation. The grant programs described in this document are a result of discussions designed to address this objective. The UW System has worked closely with the National Council on Undergraduate Research (CUR), the country’s leading voice to support and promote high-quality undergraduate student-faculty collaborative research and scholarship.
Teams from UW four-year campuses have developed campus-wide engagement plans to institutionalize undergraduate research at their respective campuses. Topics that were addressed included resource scarcity, faculty workload issues, support for faculty and students to conduct summer research, and the recognition of undergraduate research in setting criteria for faculty promotion and tenure.
In 2014, the REDI Committee endorsed two initiatives that were designed to begin addressing these identified needs.
First, an Undergraduate Research and Discovery Grant program provided resources for administrators and faculty to collaborate in ways that support undergraduate research expansion across all disciplines. This one-time Discovery Grant program provided grants to campuses during 2015 only.
The second program, the Regent Scholar Grant program, began last year and will continue in 2016. This program was designed to stimulate faculty-student collaborative research primarily at the comprehensive and two-year campuses in the UW System. Through a highly competitive process, Regent Scholar Grants provided summer funding support for faculty to engage in research with undergraduate students, ultimately benefiting both. Early in 2015, five initial awardees were selected from a field of 32 entrants from across UW System and were recognized as “Regent Scholars.” Undergraduate research programs prepare students to participate in basic and applied research and contribute to the state’s overall research and development efforts.
In 2016, the Regent Scholar Grant program will provide three awards of up to $50,000 each. Regent Scholar Grants will be available for faculty, along with undergraduate students and other collaborative partners, supporting entrepreneurial ideas and innovative projects.
Regent Scholar Program
Faculty/Student Awards ($50,000 each x 3) $150,000
Total Funds Available $150,000
The funding for the Regent Scholar Program for FY 2015-16 will come from Systemwide balances.