Texas Tech Attributes Successful Year of Research to Faculty
The university experienced one of its most successful research years across all disciplines.
Written by Chris Cook
In a period where the university is competing to become a top research institution in the state, Texas Tech researchers were instrumental in advancing the school’s success.
Texas Tech experienced one of its most successful research years in fiscal year 2010 and is crediting that success to the efforts of university faculty, according to Taylor Eighmy, vice president for research.
“We had a successful year for research and scholarship opportunities across all disciplines,” Eighmy said. “We have a talented and dedicated faculty, many of whom are the nation’s top experts in their areas of study. They embraced our goals of enhancing our research and creating and seizing opportunities to conduct research. Our success is a credit to their hard work.”
In a period where the university is competing to become a Tier One and top research university in the state, Texas Tech researchers were instrumental in the number of proposals submitted (954), the number of awards received (607) and the value of the awards received ($67 million). All of these measures were the best ever recorded by Texas Tech.
“This has been a remarkable year for our faculty,” Eighmy said. “Four faculty members, Dr. Mark McGinley, Dr. Roman Taraban, Dr. David Lawver and Dr. Nora Griffin-Shirley, received U.S. Fulbright Scholars Fellowships. Three faculty members, Dr. Ranadip Pal, Dr. Shiren Wang and Dr. Luis Grave de Peralta, received the NSF CAREER award, the most competitive and distinguished research grant from the National Science Foundation.”
The university also received a record number of monetary research grants. While final numbers won’t be available until later in the fall, restricted research expenditures are expected to reach record numbers and eclipse the $35 million spent on research in 2008-09. Total research expenditures will pass the $100 million plateau for the first time as well.
One of the most notable research awards revolves around the university’s research and development in wind energy and a partnership with the National Institute of Renewable Energy (NIRE). NIRE awarded Texas Tech researcher Steven Bayne a $3.69 million research and development contract to test wind turbine prototypes. This followed closely on the heels of Gov. Rick Perry’s announcement in August of an $8.4 million Emerging Technology Fund award to the university for wind energy research and development.
During fiscal year 2009, Texas Tech received more than $4 million in stimulus dollars that counted toward its final award and expenditure numbers a year ago. The university didn’t receive those funds in fiscal year 2010.
“The most impressive aspect of our success this past year is the fact that we surpassed the previous year’s numbers without the support of ARRA (American Recovery and Reinvestment Act) stimulus aid,” Eighmy added. “Again, this is a direct result of the hard work of our faculty, who have embraced the vision of the university and taken us further than we’ve ever been before.”
Achieving Tier One status will have a transformative effect on Texas Tech. It will put Texas Tech into an elite category of universities, providing our students with unmatched educational opportunities. Attaining Tier One status will not only transform Texas Tech University, it will expand the scope of our research to meet the world’s needs and create an economic boom for Lubbock, West Texas and the state.
The journey to Tier One status began in 2009 when the Texas Higher Education Coordinating Board (THECB) designated Texas Tech and six other schools as emerging research universities.
For more information, visit www.tier1.ttu.edu