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Inside Iowa State, a newspaper for faculty and staff, is published by the Office of University Relations.

Jan. 13, 2006

Council hopes to grow grant program

by Anne Krapfl

The Professional and Scientific Council will ask for an additional $15,000 annually for a 12-year old program that partially funds projects or programs aimed at recruiting and retaining students. Council members unanimously approved the proposal at their Jan. 5 meeting. The proposal also seeks a three-year funding commitment, rather than the fund's current year-to-year status.

The request will be sent to President Gregory Geoffroy, and vice presidents Benjamin Allen (academic affairs) and Tom Hill (student affairs). Funding comes from the president's office.

Funding for the Student Recruitment and Retention Grants Program started at $25,000 in 1994 and has been $30,000 since fall 2000. Individual grants have ranged from $350 to $5,000. Over the years, request totals have varied from about $55,000 to more than $235,000.

The additional funds would allow the program to continue to fund, at least partially, new recruitment or retention initiatives. It also would give the review committee some flexibility to fund proposals for more than one year. Committee co-chair Mary Darrow said that funding a program for more than a single year is more likely to result in measurable outcomes. She said it also gives the grant team time to make adjustments to improve their program for better results.

Family-friendly workplace

The council last month forwarded a request to Allen to expand the Guidelines for Accommodating the Needs of New Parents, which were developed in January 2002. The council proposed that the guidelines be applied to other work-family balancing challenges, such as caring for a child with special needs, caring for a spouse or parent, or personal health issues of the employee.

Council president Dan Woodin said the council's proposal captures the circumstances identified in the Faculty Senate's recommendation, approved last month, to allow temporary part-time status for faculty facing home vs. work balancing challenges.

"The idea is to broaden opportunities for a family-friendly environment at Iowa State," he said.

In other business, the council elected Teri Peterson, administrative specialist in the Office of Biotechnology, president-elect for the council year that begins this summer. During an online election in March, P&S employees will vote to fill 13 expired terms on the council.

The council's next meeting begins at 2 p.m. Feb. 2 in the Memorial Union Pioneer Room.


P&S Council members say more funding in the student recruitment and retention grant program would give reviewers some flexibility to fund proposals beyond a single year.