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University of Iowa News Release


Dec. 18, 2007

Momentum Plus grants will encourage diversity outreach

University of Iowa Interim Executive Vice President and Provost Lola Lopes and Vice President for Research Meredith Hay have announced the 2007-08 competition for Iowa Momentum Plus grants, a program that offers competitive grants to UI researchers, scholars and artists seeking to incorporate diversity outreach in their work.

Inspired by "The Iowa Promise," the UI strategic plan for 2005-2010, this three- year initiative will award supplemental grants to individuals who have already competed successfully for external funding and who want to enhance a funded project with an additional diversity component.

The program will distribute a total of $20,000 in supplemental grants each year over three fiscal years, to faculty, staff or students who have a currently funded external grant. This will be the second year of the program.

"The point of the Momentum Plus program is to encourage all of us to think of ways to incorporate diversity outreach into our everyday research, scholarship, and artistic efforts," Hay said. "I am confident that UI scholars and researchers will have many terrific ideas for diversity outreach."

"Linking diversity outreach to funded research projects helps remind us that there is more to research than finding an answer to a particular question," Lopes said. "Sharing the experience of research with younger students and with citizens outside the university doubles the value of our scholarship and science."

Momentum Plus grant awardees for 2006-07 included the School of Art and Art History for a research trip to former African Dutch colonies and outreach to K-12 students, and to build a sustainable arts program at the Juvenile Home and State Training School. The Department of Psychological and Quantitative Foundations in the College of Education used the grant for a career education program for immigrant students at rural high schools, and the Henry B. Tippie College of Business funded a student and faculty exchange with Clark Atlanta University.

"The awards committee was delighted by the continuing interest in the project last year," said Marcella David, the special assistant to the president for equal opportunity and diversity and associate provost for diversity.

David encourages other departments and researchers to think of ways they might use Momentum Plus funds to add diversity components to their research programs. Examples of potential diversity outreach include: K-12 programming with students from diverse communities; career exploration programming; K-12 teacher enrichment programs; research opportunities including lab work, fieldwork, or professional development; service learning opportunities that place current Iowa students in diverse communities; and collaborative work with minority-serving institutions.

The Momentum Plus grants are intended to help advance goals in the five key focus areas of "The Iowa Promise": undergraduate education, graduate and professional education and research, diversity, vitality and engagement.

Details on the submission process are available at

Application materials are due by 5 p.m. Friday, Feb. 29, 2008, at the Office of the Vice President for Research, 201 Gilmore Hall. Those looking for help to develop ideas should contact the Center for Diversity and Enrichment, 319-335-3555; Women in Science and Engineering, 319-335-3511; or one of the many other UI offices that work with diverse communities on and off campus.

STORY SOURCE: University of Iowa News Services, 300 Plaza Centre One, Suite 371, Iowa City, Iowa 52242-2500.

MEDIA CONTACTS: Marcella David, Office of Equal Opportunity and Diversity, 319-335-0705,; George McCrory, University News Services, 319-384-0012,