Funded Proposals (6/1/2015-6/30/2015)


The following UTC faculty and staff recently attracted $2,076,896 in external grant and contract awards:

Dr. Trevor Elliot, Assistant Professor of Mechanical Engineering, secured $47,000 from Denso North America Foundation to fund a capstone design project for mechanical engineering students entering the intercollegiate Baja SAE design competition. Through the project, students will design, fabricate, and test an off-road vehicle prototype that can withstand harsh conditions and rugged terrain. Participating students will develop leadership, organization, and management skills.

Deputy Chief of Police, Craig Hamilton (Campus Law Enforcement), Ms. Stephanie Rowland (Title IX Coordinator, Office of the Chancellor), Ms. Sara Peters (UTC Counseling Center), and Dr. Helen Eigenberg (Criminal Justice) secured $60,000 from the Tennessee Office of Criminal Justice Programs to improve UTC’s ability to respond to sexual misconduct and relationship violence. The team plans to hire an investigator and increase training and expertise to build our campus’ capacity to respond to appropriate to sexual violence offenses.

Drs. June Hanks and Sue Barlow, Associate Professor and Assistant Professor of Physical Therapy, attracted $5,850 from the Alliance of Women Philanthropists’ Giving Circle program to purchase a human patient simulator for use by physical and occupational therapy doctoral students. The simulator will challenge students to expand critical problem-solving skills in a realistic, dynamic, and controlled setting.

Dr. Linda Hill, Associate Professor of Nursing, secured $336,177 from the Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA) for year two of a three-year project to increase the diversity and cultural competency of the certified registered nurse anesthetist (CRNA) population.  Strategies include recruiting students from under-represented groups, increasing retention and graduate rates, engaging students in activities that increase their understanding of the social determinants of health, and improving the curriculum. In a second award from HRSA, Dr. Hill secured $27,977 to continue the Nurse Anesthetist Traineeship program, which provides scholarships for full-time nurse anesthesia students.  The goal is to increase the number and diversity of nurse anesthetists and to encourage graduates to practice in health professional shortage areas.

Ms. Laurie Melnik and Mr. Joel Baxley, Interim Director and Director of Art Visual Education at the Southeast Center for Education in the Arts, received $999 from Love Fellowship Baptist Church to develop and facilitate reader’s theatre sessions for K-5 students participating in the 2015 Love Fellowship summer camps at Hardy Elementary. Sessions took place Monday, Wednesday, and Friday mornings during the first few weeks of June.

Drs. Brent Rollins, Director of the Civil Engineering Materials Laboratory, and Joseph Owino, Civil, Chemical, & General Engineering Department Head, received $12,954 from Spray-Lock Concrete Protection LLC to test a hypothesis on reducing the effects of sulfuric acid on concrete.

Dr. Chris Smith, Director of the School of Nursing, in collaboration with the Department of Health & Human Performance, received $373,100 for year two of a three-year program, COMPASS: Combating Obesity’s Multiple chronic conditions through Preparation Activities Shared among Students. The program prepares nurses to work in collaborative, interprofessional teams to address the multiple chronic conditions associated with obesity, while engaging numerous faculty from the School of Nursing, Health and Human Performance, and other departments. Smith also secured an additional $337,839 from the Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA) to continue providing traineeship support to students enrolled in UTC’s Master of Science family nurse practitioner program and another $645,000 from HRSA to continue providing scholarships for disadvantaged UTC nursing students.

Ms. Karen Vann, Director of the Center for Community Career Education’s Talent Search Program, secured $230,000 from the U.S. Department of Education to continue the Talent Search Program which offers academic and social support to economically disadvantaged, potentially first-generation college-bound middle and high school students. Through Talent Search, more than 500 area students participate in academic counseling, workshops and seminars, college campus visits, mentoring, cultural enrichment activities, and other educational experiences.



Submitted Proposals (6/1/2015-6/31/2015)


The following UTC faculty and staff members submitted proposals with the potential to generate over $2,109,449 in external funding, if awarded:

The Graduate School of Computational Engineering Research Team, in collaboration with the University of Miami and Iowa State University, requested $222,000 from NASA to develop a high fidelity, nonlinear, fluid-structure interaction analysis and design tool.

The Graduate School of Computational Engineering Research Team requested $244,390 from NASA’s Langley Research Center to perform research on an existing nonlinear computational structural dynamics capability.

Dr. Gregory Heath (Health and Human Performance) requested $399,590 from Emory University to determine the effectiveness of linking evidence-based clinical physical activity with evidence-based community physical activity programming. The project seeks to examine outcomes that matter to patients and clinicians in the prevention and management of non-communicable chronic diseases in a sample of low-income, diverse individuals who have experienced at least one cardiovascular disease factor.

Ms. Linda Orth, Ms. Squoia Holmes-Mayweather (Records Office), and a broad team of UTC veterans advocates requested $499,948 from the US Department of Education to establish the Southeast TN Veteran Academic & Leadership Organization for our Region (VALOR) Center of Excellence. The model program plans to support veteran student success by coordinating services to address the academic, financial, physical, and social needs of veteran students.

Drs. Sean Richards, Colleen Mikelson (Biological and Environmental Sciences), Cuilan Gao (Mathematics), and Steven Symes (Chemistry) requested $390,990 from NIH’s National Institute of Environmental Sciences to examine effects on low birth rates. The project aims to investigate the interplay between environmental exposures, human biology, and the limits on longevity and quality of life caused by low birth weights.

Dr. Mina Sartipi (Computer Science and Engineering) requested $352,531 from the National Science Foundation to investigate future wireless communication infrastructures to meet the challenge of increasing demand for wireless data. The results of the research will contribute to the next generation of wireless communication systems and the continued growth of radio devices.