Funding opps, awards, and recent news about UMSL researchers & innovators
Funding opps, awards, and recent news about UMSL researchers & innovators

August 2021 Newsletter


We've Missed You!

Click HERE to read a message from Chris Spilling, vice chancellor for research.
External Awards, Monthly Report: June 2021
External Awards, Annual Report: FY2021 (preliminary)
Sha-Lai Williamsassociate professor of social work 

UMSL Professor Leverages Clinical Experience in Mental Health Research 

After earning two degrees in social work, Sha-Lai Williams spent more than a decade as a licensed clinical social worker before succumbing to the potential of helping even more people through clinical research. So, she entered the PhD program in social work at Washington University with the aim of merging her extensive experience in adolescent clinical settings with research 
Her research during her doctoral studies focused on the mental health needs of young African Americans (ages 18-29) and whether and how they accessed care. Did they seek mental health care when neededIf so, was it through a formal or informal route (a community member, primary care physician, pastor, parent, etc.)? Her findings indicated that over 90% of individuals were not aware of their own mental health needs and very few sought formal care.
This knowledge drives Williams; she believes that understanding the mental health needs of a community is critical for improving long-term health outcomes for the community’s members.
Since coming to UMSL in 2013Williams has kept her focus on the mental health of African Americans. She has collaborated with the communications department to investigate effective mental health messaging – what reaches black individuals in need of care and what pushes them to seek such care. Williams is now collaborating with several departments: 1) working with investigators in education and nursing, she is seeking grant funding in hopes of relaying the experiences, joys, and challenges of African American families since the advent of COVID-19; and 2) with social work colleagues, she is exploring the impact of bystander interventions on rates of sexual assault on college campuses. 
If you would like more information about or are interested in collaborating with Williams, please visit her faculty web page.   

Effort Verification Reports

Attention Grant-Paid University Employees: EVRs Coming Due

Everyone paid from external grants between 1/1/2021 and 6/30/2021 will receive an email from "UMSL, ORA" on Wednesday, Aug. 25, asking such employees to review and approve an Effort Verification Report (EVR).  These need to be reviewed and approved within 21 days.

NIH Loan Repayment Program

Application Cycle Opens Sept.1

The NIH Loan Repayment Programs (LRPs) are a set of programs established by Congress and designed to recruit and retain highly qualified health professionals into biomedical or biobehavioral research careers. The escalating costs of advanced education and training in medicine and clinical specialties are forcing some scientists to abandon their research careers for higher-paying private industry or private practice careers. The LRPs counteract that financial pressure by repaying up to $50,000 annually of a researcher's qualified educational debt in return for a commitment to engage in NIH mission-relevant research. Since tomorrow's medical breakthroughs will be made by investigators starting in their research careers today, the LRPs represent an important investment by NIH in the future of health discovery and the wellbeing of the Nation.
Applications Due: Nov. 18, 2021
More Information on How to Apply: NIH Loan Repayment Program

NSF SBIR Interactive Workshop 

Aug. 24, 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. and  Aug. 25, 8:30 to 11:30 a.m., via Zoom
This 1 1/2-day workshop is designed for technology startups and existing businesses to learn how to apply for National Science Foundation (NSF) Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) and Small Business Technology Transfer (STTR) grants to fund R&D. This hands-on workshop is led by Dr. Veronika Redmann, consultant/grant writer, entrepreneur, and NSF reviewer. The course will offer specific directions on how to prepare a competitive NSF Phase 1 submission including how to articulate your technology as it relates to customer problem solving, necessary market research, project team make-up, crafting a strong technical approach, and budget considerations. The workshop includes breakout sessions so that participants can apply these principles.

Monthly Research Development Brown Bag Series Begins Sept. 3

UMSL Research Development invites you to attend a new brown bag workshop series featuring expert speakers on a variety of topics of interest every first Friday at noon in Woods Hall 101. 
Event Flyer
Information & Registration

Writing Winning NIH Grant Proposals

Presented by Lauren Broyles, PhD – Sept. 10, JCP 204
Join other UMSL faculty for a full-day workshop on how to write Winning NIH Proposals. This widely acclaimed seminar comprehensively addresses both practical and conceptual aspects that are important to the proposal-writing process. Registration is required by August 15.
Event Flyer

Defense Program Officer Pitch Session

Sept. 24, 2021 – Woods Hall 101
Join your colleagues for a slice of pizza and practice pitching your projects to defense funding program officers.  This is a safe place to practice pitching your research and get valuable feedback from your colleagues on content and presentation. Space is limited and the session is restricted to those submitting defense proposals.
Event Flyer
Information & Registration

Save the Date! 

Make sure to mark your calendar for the 4th annual Early Career Research Symposium, Oct. 8 from 2 to 5 p.m. in the JCPenney Summit Lounge. Join us for this fast-paced event that celebrates the research of UMSL early-career faculty. Following the presentations, connect with colleagues and future collaborators at the networking reception.
Register Online to Attend:

Knight Foundation

Combatting Disinformation in Communities of Color

Deadline: Sept. 15, 2021 (Selected applicants will be invited to submit more detailed proposals and a budget in October 2021.)
Recent studies report communities of color are asymmetrically targeted by disinformation, particularly disinformation that aims to discourage civic participation. The John S. and James L. Knight Foundation aims to fund research projects that work to disrupt the effects of targeted disinformation in communities of color. Grants of up to $175,000 will be awarded in support of a wide range of proposals including publication development; course relief to enable research; research assistance; targeted investigative reporting projects; symposia; workshops; or other convenings that advance practical, actionable insights; and data or technology acquisition.
Informational Webinars:
National Science Foundation
Graduate Research Fellowship Program (GRFP) 
Oct. 18, 2021 (life sciences) | Oct. 19, 2021 (computer and information science and engineering, materials research, psychology, social sciences, STEM education and learning) | Oct. 21, 2021 (engineering) | Oct. 22, 2021 (chemistry, geosciences, mathematical sciences, physics and astronomy
The purpose of the GRFP is to help ensure the quality, vitality, and diversity of the scientific and engineering workforce in the United States. The program recognizes and supports outstanding graduate students who are pursuing full-time, research-based master's and doctoral degrees in science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) or in STEM education. Each Fellowship provides three years of support over a five-year fellowship period. For each of the three years of support, NSF provides a $34,000 stipend and $12,000 cost of education allowance to the graduate degree-granting institution of higher education. Those already enrolled in graduate school may apply one time only and must be in their first year or just beginning their second year of graduate school. 
 For help planning your application and for essay and letter reviews, please reach out to Cynthia Jobe at

Your Source for Industry-Sponsored Research and Collaboration Opportunities 

Find industry research challenges in your areas of expertise and make sure to post your own projects and ideas on the portal as "investigator-initiated projects" (IIPs) for companies to review for potential collaborations. 
Contact Tomy Ames ( with questions.
Research Enabled is a collaboration between the University of Missouri and Southern Illinois University systems and is funded in part by a grant award from the U.S. Department of Commerce, Economic Development Administration. 


The Office of Research and Economic & Community Development research units strive to enhance the campus research enterprise, from maintaining an investigator-focused infrastructure and streamlining research processes to facilitating and diversifying investigators' avenues for funding and commercializing research discoveries. Please feel free to stop by (341 and 346 Woods Hall) to find out more about how we can help you succeed. Or visit, email or call 314-516-5899. We look forward to hearing from you!
The Research Development, Sponsored Projects Administration (SPA), and Research Compliance units administer grants and contracts for sponsored research and other activities at UMSL. Staff can assist you with many aspects of both internal and external funding, including the following:
  • funding opportunity identification
  • grant writing
  • research compliance
  • pre-award budgeting and submission
  • post-award financials
  • project close-out
To find your pre- or post-award accountant, download the Staff Responsibilities chart.
The Office of IP Management & Commercialization, also known as "Technology Transfer" or the "TTO," assists faculty in protecting and bringing their research discoveries and inventions, whether patentable or copyrightable, to market. 
So, why do universities engage in Technology Transfer? Watch this quick video by the Association of University Technology Managers:
Video: About Technology Transfer
Your tech transfer staff work to analyze the technology regarding intellectual property protection and the market need to determine whether patent applications should be filed and/or copyrights should be registered. For those inventions that can be protected (and even some that cannot), we then look for potential industry partners, which could include established companies and/or startup ventures, to license and commercialize the discovery.
We also process all Material Transfer Agreements (MTAs), Non-Disclosure Agreements (NDAs), and research-related fee-for-service agreements, among others, for UMSL. 
Please visit our website for more information or to disclose an invention. Feel free to visit us at 346 Woods Hall. Email: