October 26, 2016

Meet the SPA Fellows

Sponsored Projects Administration is pleased to introduce you to the 2016-17 Fellows (Cohort A). The SPA Fellows Program is an intensive educational experience designed to develop the knowledge base and grant-writing skills of faculty members who display superior potential regarding the ability to obtain external funding in support of research, scholarship, creative projects, and other fundable endeavors. 

Allison Rober

Allison Rober is an Assistant Professor of Environmental Biology in the Department of Biology at Ball State University. Allison earned a Certification in Teaching College Science and her Ph.D. in Integrative Biology and Ecology, Evolutionary Biology, and Behavior (EEBB) with a specialization in Environmental Science and Policy from Michigan State University.

Allison’s research focus is in the area of algal community ecology, with particular interest in environmental controls on benthic algal communities and their role in ecosystem processes. Much of her research focuses on how processes related to ongoing climate change (e.g., variable hydrology, light availability, nutrient enrichment, and warming) influence algal community composition in wetlands and the potential consequences for food web structure.

Allison is actively involved in a variety of initiatives to enhance science literacy through scholarly teaching and developed the BSU Scientific Teaching Program for graduate students interested in learning to build and implement student-centered instructional materials and teaching strategies for STEM courses.

Philip Smaldino

My lab is interested in studying “unusual” DNA shapes. We study a specific protein that is present in human cells, that can change the shape of certain regions of DNA. We are interested in how this change in DNA shape can turn a gene “on” or “off”. We use these findings to better understand and treat specific human diseases including HIV/AIDS and ALS (Lou Gehrigs disease).

Outside of research and teaching, I enjoy spending time with my wife, Melissa, and our (soon to be) two children. We enjoy working on our large vegetable garden, tending to our 11 chickens and three goats, and staying active at St. Francis of Assisi Catholic Church.

Leeann Lower

Hi, my name is Leeann Lower, but most people call me Lee. I am an Assistant Professor in Sport Administration at Ball State University (BSU). This is my second year at BSU, having recently finished my doctorate at The Ohio State University (OSU) in Sport Management. While at OSU I acted as research coordinator for LiFE Sports, a sport-based positive youth development program.

My primary research interests are in the areas of organizational effectiveness and sport for development. My scholarship is based on the premise that a sport program can maximize participant outcomes and achieve the organization’s vision, if designed, delivered, and evaluated effectively. I became interested in the areas of organizational effectiveness and sport for development through my family’s involvement in Athletes in Action as well as my own experiences running collegiate cross-country and participating in recreational sport.

Apart from my position at BSU, I enjoy an active lifestyle with friends and family. You will often find me training for a marathon, playing recreational sports or games, or traveling to experience a new city or event. I also appreciate reading a good book and being out in nature. It has been such a joy joining the Ball State community. I hope to continue to expand my network and skills through meaningful experiences, such as the SPA Fellows program.

Brandon Kistler

My name is Brandon Kistler and I am a new faculty returning to Ball State after completing my PhD at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. I have a background in both nutrition and exercise physiology with specific expertise in cardiovascular methodology including ultrasound, tonometry, heart rate and blood pressure variability.

My research focuses primarily on strategies to overcome barriers and help prevent inadequate or inappropriate nutrition in patients with renal disease. My recent projects have focused on the safety of providing nutrition support during hemodialysis treatment and have been geared towards providing the scientific knowledge to develop evidence-based guidelines for this controversial practice. I have been the primary investigator or co-investigator on grants from the American Heart Association, National Multiple Sclerosis Society, American College of Sports Medicine, and United States Department of Agriculture. 

Tya M. Arthur

Tya M. Arthur, PhD, MPH, CPH, is an Assistant Professor of Health Science in the Department of Nutrition and Health Science at Ball State University. She received a master of public health in Health Policy and Management from the Texas A&M Health Science Center School of Rural Public Health and a doctorate in Health Education from Texas A&M University in College Station, TX.

Dr. Arthur’s research interests focus on culturally sensitive health promotion and health care with the goal of preventing and reducing chronic disease among racial/ethnic minority and low income communities. Her program of research involves (1) developing, implementing, and evaluating community-based, culturally sensitive health promotion interventions, and (2) identifying and addressing the health-related social needs (e.g., food insecurity, transportation, and housing instability) of low-income patients with the goal of reducing healthcare costs and improving quality of care and health outcomes.

Dr. Arthur has been inducted into the Delta Omega Honorary Society in Public Health, the Eta Sigma Gamma National Professional Health Education Honorary, and the Kappa Delta Pi International Honor Society in Education.

Christina Jones

Christina Jones, PhD, is a tenure-track Assistant Professor in the Department of Nutrition and Health Science in the College of Health at Ball State University. Dr. Jones spent three years as an Assistant Professor of Corporate and Health Communication at the University of Wisconsin-Whitewater before joining the BSU faculty. She completed her doctorate in Health Communication from Purdue University in May 2014 and her Master of Arts in Communication from the University of Illinois in Urbana-Champaign in May 2009.

Dr. Jones’ expertise and accompanying research program in health disparities and health advocacy in vulnerable populations spans across chronic disease prevention, social justice and health, and health behavior theory, using both qualitative and quantitative methodologies.

Considering her mass media and strategic communication background, Dr. Jones also maintains interests in community-driven research as well as health promotion, intervention design, and program evaluation. Dr. Jones is a recipient of the 2016 National Communication Association’s Golden Monograph Award, which is a competitively selected achievement bestowed at the top publication in the discipline of the prior year.

In her free time, Dr. Jones enjoys spending time outdoors with her son, Gabriel, as well as cheering on her favorite football teams – the Purdue Boilermakers and the Indianapolis Colts. In the Spring you may also find her at the speedway – Dr. Jones is a consistent attendee of the Indianapolis 500 and a committed fan of IndyCar racing.

Teresia Mbogori 

My name is Teresia Mbogori and I have recently joined Ball State University as an Assistant Professor of Nutrition and Dietetics. I was born and raised in Kenya where I did all my basic education and Bachelor’s degree. In 2009, I moved to Israel to pursue a Master’s degree in Nutritional Sciences at The Hebrew University of Jerusalem. I returned to Kenya in 2011 and worked for a few years as an adjunct instructor at my Alma Mater, Egerton University. I then moved to Texas Tech University in 2013 to pursue a Doctoral degree in Nutritional Sciences. I graduated in August 2016 and immediately joined Ball State University as a faculty member.

My research interests are in food security, nutrition education and public policy. I am interested in community empowerment projects that enable the community to develop solutions for their own food security and nutrition needs.

I am married and have two boys, ages 12 and 9. When I can, I enjoy reading books and watching movies that are totally unrelated to my discipline. For example, I follow NASA on Facebook and watch their channel when they launch space ships. Although most of this happens late at night, I still stay up to watch it live.

October 25, 2016

Research Week 2016 - Mark Your Calendars!

Sponsored Projects Administration is proud to announce the schedule for our Annual Research Week conference. Research Week 2016 takes place November 14-18 and includes more than thirty workshops, presentations, and special events all designed especially for the Ball State research community. We have expanded the conference by adding several new events to the schedule this year. 

This conference is free and open to the entire Ball State community. Registration is not required for individual events, but is offered if you would like a record of your attendance. Registration links can be found in session descriptions on the Research Week webpage. New information is being added every week, so check back often for updates!

This year we are offering several different tracks of learning opportunities for Research Week:

SPA Primer Series – Workshops and presentations about the nuts and bolts of doing research at Ball State University. Topics range from funding searches and grantsmanship 101 to making the most of reviewer comments and compliance issues.

Spotlight Events  Just want the highlights? Spotlight Events may be just what you’re looking for. These events will appeal to the broadest range of the campus audience. Anyone, no matter the discipline or level of involvement in research, will find these events of interest. Spotlight events include a keynote speech by Jennifer Blackmer, Associate Provost for Entrepreneurial Learning and Associate Professor of Theatre, and a Teach-a-Thon featuring Ted Talk style presentations from several Ball State faculty members.

Guest Speaker Sessions – Many of this year’s sessions feature speakers from outside of Sponsored Projects Administration. They will be discussing the Fulbright experience, introducing the new College of Health, helping us to understand the export control process, and presenting on many other interesting topics surrounding the external funding enterprise on campus. 

Daily Panel Discussions – Join us every day at 2 p.m. in Bracken Library 104 for a panel discussion. See Research Week schedule for topics. 

*Special Presentation*
NSF Fall Grants Conference – We will be live-streaming both days of the National Science Foundation fall grants conference on Monday, November 14 and Tuesday, November 15. Viewing locations will be the SPA Conference Room and the Schwartz Learning Pod (Bracken Library, 1st floor). Check here for conference schedule.

This year there are three easy ways to access the full and up-to-date Research Week conference schedule. You can either visit Guidebook on the web or the Sponsored Projects Administration website to get the schedule online, or download the Guidebook app to have access to the complete schedule on the go!

Be sure to follow us on Facebook and Twitter for future updates and information. 

October 13, 2016

SPA Colloquium - The Fulbright Experience

The Core Fulbright Scholarship program sends more than 800 U.S. faculty and professionals abroad each year.

Founded by U.S. Senator J. William Fulbright in 1946, the scholar program disperses competitive, merit-based grants for international educational exchange for students, scholars, teachers, professionals, scientists and artists. More than 20 Ball State faculty members have received the award since its founding. 

Dom Caristi, Ball State Professor of Telecommunications and official Ambassador for the Fulbright Scholar Program, discussed his experience with the program at the Sponsored Projects Administration Colloquium Series session Wednesday. 

"I've never met a Fulbright recipient who regretted the experience," Caristi said. "That's why they continue to have an attachment to the program."

Caristi has received the award twice since 1995 and continues his involvement in the program as an ambassador.

"Everyone who has done it has something positive to say about it, and that's the reason so many faculty continue their association with the program long after they receive the award," he said.

Dom Caristi, Professor of Telecommunications and official Ambassador for the Fulbright
Scholar Program, discusses his experience with the program at the SPA Colloquium Series session Wednesday. 

Justin Miller, Director of Sponsored Projects Administration, highlighted the various types of agendas set for Fulbright Scholar grant recipients at the SPA Colloquium Series session Wednesday.

"Some people will do more teaching than research and others will do a mixture of both," Miller said. "Every award is a snowflake - in that they are all unique."

Caristi said the application process to receive the grant can seem daunting, but it's well worth the effort.

"You have to make sure you are a good fit for what they are looking for," he said. "I have been turned down before, but every situation is different."

Attendees of the SPA Colloquium Series session on Wednesday discuss the
 application process involved with the Fulbright Scholar program. 
Miller said the program is a great opportunity for Ball State faculty in their research and teaching endeavors. 

"We have a really high success rate here at the university and it's been a great opportunity for Ball State faculty," he said. "Our role at SPA is to help with the application process and administer the award." 

Reasons to apply for a Fulbright Scholar grant:
  • Exposure to Different Culture and People in more than 150 different countries 
  • Prestige 
  • Rewarding Experience

The next full Core competition, for academic year 2018-2019, will open in February 2017. 

October 05, 2016

October Events

Sponsored Projects Administration has several exciting workshops and events on campus during the month of October! We are bringing back our brand new SPA Colloquium Series that will provide faculty with learning opportunities related to the external funding enterprise on campus.

SPA Colloquium:

October 12 - The Fulbright Experience: Dom Caristi, Professor of Telecommunications and official Ambassador for the Fulbright Scholar Program, joins Justin Miller (Director, Sponsored Projects Administration) to discuss the Fulbright application process and the various Fulbright programs.

October 28 - Faculty Success Stories: Pathways to Funding Success (Session 3): John Ludvick (Animation), Josh Gruver (Natural Resources and Environmental Management), Tom Holtgraves (Psychological Science), and Rui Chen (Information Systems and Operations Management) discuss how they achieved funding success to support their projects

All are welcome; professional staff and faculty members are especially encouraged to attend.

Please RSVP:

October 12 @ 12 PM - Arts & Journalism Bldg (Atrium Dining Room)

October 28 @ 3 PM - Bracken Library 104

Focus on the Search:
These intensive one-hour workshops are designed to equip faculty members to become sophisticated users of COS Pivot, Ball State’s primary funding opportunities database.

Please RSVP: 

October 13 @ 3 PM - Research House Conference Room

October 19 @ 5 PM - Research House Conference Room

Cayuse Learning Session: New for 2016-17, Cayuse SP provides a platform for electronic creation, tracking, and management of proposals and awards.

Please RSVP: 

October 14 @ 2 PM - Bracken Library 224

For more information: Stan Geidel (sgeidel@bsu.edu - 285-2022) or Jessie Roark (jaroark@bsu.edu - 285-5003)