CHARLESTON, W.Va. – Six faculty members at West Virginia public universities have received ‘mini-grants’ from the state to assist in preparing proposals with the goal of obtaining much larger research funding awards.

The West Virginia Higher Education Policy Commission’s Division of Science and Research announced Research Proposal Mini-Grants of $5,000 each to faculty at Concord University, Marshall University, West Virginia University, and West Virginia University Institute of Technology.

The mini-grants provide replacement salary for an uninterrupted period of time for a faculty member to write research or research equipment proposals during the summer. Each winning faculty member agrees to submit a proposal for funding from an external agency or foundation as a result of obtaining the mini-grant.

The Research Proposal Mini-Grants were awarded to:

•    Joseph Allen, Concord University;
•    Vagner Benedito, West Virginia University;
•    Deborah Chun, West Virginia University Institute of Technology;
•    Rosalyn Quinones, Marshall University;
•    John Rakus, Marshall University; and
•    Kaushlendra Singh, West Virginia University.

Dr. Jan Taylor, the Commission’s Director of Research Programs, said “The Mini-Grant Program is an investment in research, education, and ultimately, in economic development.  By allowing these faculty members the opportunity to concentrate on external research proposals, the State of West Virginia ultimately may realize benefits well beyond its $30,000 investment.”

The Research Proposal Mini-Grants are funded by the West Virginia Research Challenge Fund, which lays the foundation for many of the state’s competitive grant programs. For more information regarding that fund and other programs managed by the Division of Science and Research, please visit

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