Emmanuel College is one of 140 local nonprofits to receive grants of $100,000 to $500,000 each through the Cummings Foundation’s $25 Million Grant Program.
The Office of Sponsored Programs is dedicated to working with Emmanuel College faculty in all aspects of sponsored programs administration to support your creative, scholarly and research activities. OSP provides high quality professional services in pre- and post-award grant and contract administration and research compliance. OSP reports to the Vice President of Academic Affairs.
OSP is pleased to announce faculty grant recipients and their projects:
Associate Professor of Biology Dr. Jason Kuehner was awarded a three-year, $372,026 grant from the National Science Foundation (NSF) Research in Undergraduate Institutions (RUI) to examine control of DNA traffic and regulation of gene expression.
Emmanuel College formally launched the PEER->CELL program, funded by a $50,000 grant from the Massachusetts Life Sciences Center. The Persons Excluded for Ethnicity or Race (PEER) Center of Excellence in Leadership and Life Sciences (CELL) program has been designed not only to prepare these students for successful careers in the field, but to cultivate a diverse talent pipeline for the ever-growing number of life sciences companies in Massachusetts. Led by Associate Professor of Biology and incoming Associate Dean of the School of Science & Health Padraig Deighan, the PEER->CELL program will serve 32 traditionally underrepresented students across the Colleges of the Fenway (COF).
Associate Professor of Physics Allen Price was awarded a three-year, $378,754 grant from the National Science Foundation (NSF) to investigate how proteins find specific locations in DNA. The grant, and the research, marks the continuation of a decade-long project that began with an initial NSF grant in 2012 and another in 2017, for a total of nearly $1 million. Through their research, Dr. Price and a team of undergraduates have worked to understand how cells access genetic information and how they use it.
Associate Professor of Mathematics Benjamin Allen was awarded $240,000 from the John Templeton Foundation for his project "Natural Selection for Collective Purpose." The project seeks to mathematically model collective, cooperative purpose as is widely exhibited in living systems from microbes to metazoans. A key output of this work will be a new modeling framework that is generally applicable to diverse biological scenarios and helps to unify existing theoretical resources for the evolution of agential features in living systems. The project was part of a larger, $15 million grant by the Templeton Foundation's “Science of Purpose” initiative.
Aren Gerdon, Associate Professor of Chemistry was awarded $350,316 over three years from the National Science Foundation (NSF) for RUI: DNA and nanoparticle assemblies as biomimetic templates for calcium phosphate mineralization. The award will support and mentor undergraduate students pursuing research in biomaterials, mineralization, and biomimetics with an emphasis on analysis at the interface between inorganic materials chemistry and biochemistry. This award will primarily support student researchers in their first or second year, and ensure these students contribute to the larger scientific community.
The College received a $100,000 grant through Cummings Foundation's "$100K for 100" program. The grant will help support service initiatives through Emmanuel's Cardinal Seán O'Malley Center for Mission & Ministry.
The College received a $33,000 grant from the George B. Henderson Foundation to explore the exterior restoration and revitalization of the William Lloyd Garrison House, a National Historic Landmark that was once home to the great abolitionist, and part of the College's Notre Dame Campus, which was established in 2012.
Helen MacDonald, Assistant Professor of Psychology, received a $15,000 grant from The Frederick P. Lenz Foundation for American Buddhism to support further research and development of her Program for Mindfulness and Contemplative Learning at Emmanuel College. This award will enable the Program to build on MacDonald's existing research, and initiate the development and implementation of a mindfulness mediation group, a speaker series, a mindfulness-based stress reduction (MBSR) group program, and the creation of a Mindfulness Library, all open to the Emmanuel community. Together, these programs strive to foster mindfulness, psychological health, compassion, self-awareness, and emotion regulation throughout the College.
Violetta Ravagnoli, Assistant Professor of History, received a 2018 Marion and Jasper Whiting Foundation Fellowship in the amount of $6,500 to support her project, "Immigrant Kitchen and Identity in Glocal Perspective." Ravagnoli traveled to Italy to visit Gustolab International-Institute of Food Studies in Rome, meeting with the center's director to discuss developing experiences abroad for students that take her newly-approved course, "Immigrant Kitchens: A Glocal Perspective on Identity, Ethnicity and Foodways." She also visited Sciacca on the west coast of Sicily, which represents one of the key sending communities of late nineteenth-century Italian immigration to Boston, to meet with local families, work with the city's Pro Loco office, and participate in the Madonna del Soccorso Feast, which is reenacted every summer within the Italian-American community of Boston's North End.
Padraig Deighan, Assistant Professor of Biology, received a four-year, $351,536 grant from the National Science Foundation (NSF) to explore how bacteria rapidly adapt to their changing environments. In particular, the project aims to discover and characterize the protein-to-protein interactions that influence gene expression profiles in E. coli, information that will facilitate a greater understanding of how bacteria cause disease.
Allen Price, Associate Professor of Physics, received a three-year, $341,217 grant from the National Science Foundation (NSF) to investigate how protein molecules are able to find specific locations in the genome accurately and quickly-work that could have beneficial implications for the emerging field of gene editing, as well as the treatment of genetic diseases. This is Dr. Price's second NSF grant in five years.
Benjamin Allen and Christine Sample, Assistant Professors of Mathematics, were awarded a three-year $285,161 grant from the National Science Foundation (NSF) to study evolution as a mathematical process. Their project may aid the understanding and treatment of cancer, which can be seen as unwanted evolution occurring inside the body. Dr. Allen was the lead author of an article on the topic recently published in Nature, a prestigious multidisciplinary scientific journal.