Five faculty-led projects focused on violence prevention and education in health, science and language arts in the region have been awarded Public Service Endowment Grants by the vice chancellor for Research and Engagement.
The awards are intended to enhance the public service mission of the campus by translating faculty and staff research for use that benefits community partners while engaging them in the process.
Kathleen Davis, associate professor of Teacher Education and Curriculum Studies, was awarded $9,891 for an after-school science and engineering club at the Morgan School in Holyoke.
Stuart Chipkin, research professor in Kinesiology, and Dawn Heffernan, director of the campus-based Western Massachusetts Public Health Training Center, received funding for “My Life, My Health,” a project for sustainable chronic disease self-management programming in area communities. The community partners are Franklin County Home Care, Highland Valley Elder Services and the Western Regional Health Office of the state Department of Public Health. The project was awarded $15,000.
Lecturer Barbara Hruska, also of Teacher Education and Curriculum Studies, was awarded $15,000 to work with the Holyoke public schools to offer an intensive summer school for beginning English language learners.
A grant of $14,400 went to professor David Buchanan, Public Health, to engage youth in Springfield in designing a violence prevention program. He is collaborating with Men of Color Health Awareness (MOCHA).
Giang Pham, assistant professor of Communication Disorders, received $10,000 for a pilot Program to Acquire Vietnamese and English language project in partnership with the Vietnamese-American Civic Association in Springfield.
The funded projects were chosen from 16 proposals, according to Barbara Pearson of the Office of Research Development, who administers the grant program.
Dan Gerber, who chairs the Faculty Senate’s Outreach Committee, said, “Our university is world-renowned for its cutting-edge research. What is not as evident to the world but known on campus by the faculty, staff and surrounding communities is that we are also an engaged university dedicated to improving the lives of the people of the commonwealth and the world. These public service projects are prime examples of the university’s engaged process with the communities around us.”