Awards to encourage staff participation in research

By Grant Miller

Three $1,000 awards will be handed out to members of NIU’s supportive professional staff as part of a program to encourage staff participation in research.

The Supportive Professional Staff awards are to be available to staff through the faculty development program. Lecturers, research associates, faculty assistants and associates along with support staff members are eligible for the awards.

“These people are important because they provide support to academic programs here in DeKalb,” said Ed Simpson, director of the faculty development program. “This should help individuals in their career development,” he said.

Contestants should have completed at least three years of service to NIU and need to have displayed an active interest in the professional growth of the instructional, research or service functions of NIU.

“There are approximately 300 people at NIU eligible for the award,” Simpson said. “They may be working in classrooms or they may be working in research centers in DeKalb as well.”

The idea for the award came about four years ago when the SPS council approached the faculty development program members about possible grants being awarded to SPS members.

“We felt we could efficiently help SPS members the same way we help members of the faculty,” Simpson said. “We have awarded twelve people in the last four years.”

Applicants should state what assistance they need, how they intend to use the grant money, their career goals and how the award will help the work of their department.

“What’s important is what an applicant writes in their proposal,” he said. “How well they can state what they want to do for their career development within the university.”

Winners will be chosen by a selected committee from throughout the university. “The best proposals will be chosen on a competitive basis from a committee of representatives throughout the campus,” Simpson said. “The money will be awarded out of the faculty development budget.”

Proposals should be sent to Carole Minor, 311-312 Williston Hall by Sept. 17. For more information call 753-1593.