An Update from the Office of Research: November 2023

November 6, 2023

A colleague lands a $450,000-plus grant, resources help faculty find funding and more. Check out the November update from the Office of Research.

The Office of Research congratulates faculty members on securing external funding:

U-M Principal Investigator: Professor of Electrical and Computer Engineering Ya Sha (Alex) Yi
Project Title: MetaSurface Lens
Direct Sponsor: PhotSorb Science and Technology, Inc.
Total Sponsor Authorized Amount: $462,592

The proposed research will not only advance the basic science and technology of current subwavelength metalens but also pave the way for the development of its manifold application that may enable unprecedented levels of imaging, sensing and photovoltaics in performance oriented and extremely small form factors.

U-M Principal Investigator: Associate Professor of Electrical and Computer Engineering Xuan (Joe) Zhou
Project Title: Battery Workforce Challenge
Direct Sponsor: American Society for Engineering Education
Total Sponsor Authorized Amount: $152,052

The Battery Workforce Challenge is a new three-year student competition that will kick off in fall 2023 and will challenge universities and vocational schools from across North America to design, build, test, and integrate an advanced EV battery pack into a Stellantis vehicle.

Sponsored by Argonne National Laboratory, U.S. Department of Energy, Stellantis and other government and industry sponsors, UM-Dearborn will team up with Henry Ford College to execute the competition requirements, helping to prepare a diverse workforce for future battery engineering and manufacturing careers. Students will also learn valuable project management, communications, teamwork and problem-solving skills that will provide them an unparalleled educational experience and ready them for careers in the battery industry. The competition holds diversity, equity and inclusion (DEI) as a top priority and will integrate initiatives throughout all aspects of this program and will establish program requirements that foster a diverse team environment.


Competitive Campus Grants Update

The Office of Research is currently reviewing Competitive Campus Grant Applications submitted prior to the Oct. 16 deadline. Award decisions are anticipated in mid-January. If you submitted an application, we appreciate your patience as we go through our review process. 

The next cycle of FY24 Competitive Campus Grants for this fiscal year will open in early January with a deadline of Feb. 15, 2024 by 5 p.m. We will continue to accept applications for the Open Invitation Campus Grants until the end of the fiscal year, through June 30, 2024 or until funds are exhausted. For more information about all of our campus grants programs and eligibility information, please visit our campus grants webpage. If you have questions, email us at

Arts Research: Incubation & Acceleration - Funding Opportunity & Presentation

The new Arts Research: Incubation & Acceleration program seeks to elevate and expand arts research and creative practice across U-M’s campuses and schools. The program will support projects centered in the arts that ask creative questions and move toward new ideas and knowledge; invite new forms of collaboration and interaction both within and beyond the arts; and imagine new approaches to problems and ideas in the arts and society.

Applications are particularly encouraged from interdisciplinary research teams structured to provide mutual benefit to those in the arts and in other research sectors, and from individuals working in creative practice to imagine new horizons of artistic possibility. Faculty applying for individual projects are eligible for up to $25,000, and research teams are eligible for up to $50,000. First round applications are due Dec. 11 by 5 p.m. Learn more and apply.

UM-Dearborn faculty interested in the program are invited to attend a presentation by Clare Croft, Faculty Director of Arts Research / Creative Practice for an overview of the new program and to answer questions on Wednesday, Nov. 8 from 11 a.m. to noon. RSVP for the presentation.

Early-Career Funding Opportunities for Junior Faculty

Junior faculty are invited to attend this seminar that will highlight funding opportunities specifically for early-career faculty from all disciplines. Attendees will learn how to position themselves as scholars, researchers and grant writers. The presenters will outline funding opportunities from federal agencies and foundations and how to determine if a research idea is a good match for a specific program/opportunity. This seminar is presented by Vessela Vassileva-Clarke, director of Research Development and Blythe Murphy, director of Foundation Relations. See event page.

IRB Liaison & Upcoming Human Subjects Information Session

Elizabeth Molina is the IRB-HSBS staff liaison for UM-Dearborn. She holds regularly-scheduled virtual sessions for anyone interested in learning more about working with human subjects and/or the IRB application and approval process. The next session this fall semester will be held on Nov. 15 from 2 to 3:30 p.m. View the event page for full details.

Any UM-Dearborn faculty, staff, or students with questions about the IRB process can also contact Molina by email at, by phone at 734-936-1943 or by dropping into the monthly Zoom sessions offered. Additional information about working with human subjects can be found at the IRB Health Sciences and Behavioral Sciences website.

Call for Applications: 2024 Public Engagement Faculty Fellowship

The Public Engagement Faculty Fellowship works in partnership with units across the university to foster ethical, effective faculty public engagement at the University of Michigan. The fellowship supports faculty on all three campuses by providing an opportunity to develop skills and incubate project ideas, while also encouraging recognition of and experimentation with all forms of public engagement. The program brings together an interdisciplinary, intergenerational group of faculty members interested in building community and learning from each other and campus experts to effectively engage the public for larger societal impacts.

There are two phases to the program: an intensive Studio Experience phase focused on community-building, reflection, and learning, and a Project Support phase with the opportunity to request in-kind support and funding for an ambitious public engagement project. 

Applications for the 2024 cohort are due by 11:59 p.m. on Friday, Dec. 1, 2023. 

For questions, fill out this inquiry form, contact or join one of the following coffee hours on Zoom:

  • Wednesday, Nov. 15, 4-4:50 p.m.
  • Thursday, Nov. 16, 3-3:50 p.m.
  • Monday, Nov. 20, 11-11:50 a.m.
  • Tuesday, Nov. 28, 12-12:50 p.m.

Reminder: Resources for Using SciENcv

Effective Oct. 23, NSF requires all biosketch and current & pending support documents for senior personnel to be prepared using Science Experts Network Curriculum Vitae (SciENcv), a researcher profile system for all individuals who apply for, receive or are associated with research investments from federal agencies. Fillable PDF forms will no longer be accepted.

SciENcv allows researchers to document their education, employment, research activities, publications, honors, research grants, & other professional contributions to create multiple SciENcv profiles in official biographical sketch formats funding agencies such as the National Institutes of Health (NIH), the National Science Foundation (NSF), and the Institute of Education Sciences (IES). In addition, the SciENcv application can be used to create the official NSF Current and Pending Support document.

U-M Library Services has put together a guidance page to help you learn more about getting started with ScieENcv. You can also request a one-on-one Zoom session with Dearborn Office of Research staff to walk you through this process. Any researcher can register for SciENcv and create multiple biosketches, for different research projects or different funding agencies. You can find much more information about how to use SciENcv on their FAQs page.

Resources are linked below:

If you have questions about SciENcv, need additional support, or would like to schedule one-on-one assistance with setting up your SciENcv profile and documents, please email our office at

Research Events in November

Research Resource Highlight: Finding Funding

Every month, the Office of Research features a resource and/or tool that is available for researchers. This month we are featuring resources for finding funding.

The UM-Dearborn Office of Research maintains several resources for identifying funding opportunities, including:

In addition, faculty are encouraged to utilize the centrally available resources for finding funding including: