From the Associate Chair for Research–Summer 2014

Welcome to all of the new students, staff, and faculty who are joining the Department of Allied Health Sciences (DAHS) for the upcoming academic year! This research newsletter reflects upon the many accomplishments of FY 2013-2014 and highlights upcoming events and exciting new initiatives on the horizon for FY 2014-2015.

From the Associate Chair for Research–Summer 2014 click to enlarge Dr. Grace Baranek

We welcomed Jennifer Daniel, full-time Grants Administrator, to our DAHS Office of Research.  She replaced Wes Winkelman, who left in June to pursue a graduate degree at NC State.  Jennifer has already hit the ground running–processing numerous grants, serving on committees, and coordinating parking, among other things; she is featured in our staff spotlight on page 5.  We also welcomed Aaron Abate', Advanced Accounting Technician (School of Medicine FBO Service Center), who devotes 50% of his efforts to assisting with DAHS contracts; his responsibilities include monitoring post-award accounts, routing contracts, reconciling accounts, assisting with pre-awards, and development of reporting methods. Please stop by and introduce yourself to Jennifer (3110 Bondurant–M, T, Th, F) and Aaron (3114 Bondurant–T pm, Th, F am).

Our first departmental retreat, which included all faculty and staff, was a big success, with DAHS Chair Dr. Stephen Hooper leading us through a very productive day at the Friday Center on June 9.  Break-out groups made substantial progress with refining research, teaching, clinical, and administrative initiatives, in order to begin implementation of the broader strategic plan.  Our research initiatives will focus on sustaining and growing strong programs of research and scientific teams, prioritizing cross-cutting interdisciplinary foci, increasing collaborative research within and outside UNC, and building research capacity.

As a department, we are well-positioned to collectively address issues of health and well-being in our society by utilizing the individual strengths and expertise of so many different disciplines.  A team science approach is critical to addressing many complex scientific and social challenges, and it is an increasing priority for federal funding.  Thus, this year’s DAHS research forum series (three Wednesdays in the fall and again in the spring) will focus on “Effective Collaborations and Methodological Innovations” to help leverage our myriad strengths and build productive collaborations.  (See front page for dates and times.)  We encourage all faculty, staff, and PhD students interested in research to join us.

Back by popular demand, the Methodology Happy Hour series, led by Drs. Faldowski and Zhang will continue.  This event is intended to create a social space for faculty and students to discuss any types of methodological issues that may be of interest or present challenges – stay tuned for dates and times. 

Our PhD Research Methods Curriculum Committee, comprised of the three program directors and representative faculty from Human Movement Science, Speech and Hearing Sciences, and Occupational Science, as well as members of the Office of Research, has successfully drafted a modular curriculum with a range of new cutting-edge interdisciplinary research methods courses proposed to begin in Fall 2015.  The proposed plan is being circulated for faculty input before being routed to the Graduate School for approval.  I want to thank the committee members for all of their hard work and expertise – it was a remarkable collaborative effort. 

Finally, please take a look at the new resources available on our website to facilitate your grant writing.  We have developed templates/boilerplates with descriptions of various department, school, and university facilities and resources as well as provided samples of various components.  Also check out the new Target Enrollment Table Generator!  You can access these resources by logging in with your ONYEN at the following link:

FY13-14 Total $4,223,614
(Total includes new grants and renewals.)