Arts & Sciences, Engineering, Health Sciences, Nursing

Marquette faculty and staff research grants from December 2022/January 2023

The Office of Research and Sponsored Programs has announced the following research grants awarded to university faculty and staff in December 2022/January 2023.

A Model for Humanizing Engineering Education: Broadening Engineering Teaching with Theory-based Educational Resources (BETTER)

$300,000 – National Science Foundation

  • Amber Young-Brice (PI), assistant professor in the College of Nursing; and Dr. Somesh Roy and Dr. Allison Murray, assistant professors of mechanical engineering in the Opus College of Engineering
  • Abstract: This project seeks to broaden engineering teaching with theory-based educational resources (BETTER). In this project, a humanistic-educative caring framework will be applied to STEM education, specifically engineering education. This framework is grounded in “Caring Science” from the discipline of nursing, which embraces openness to the teaching-learning process of human discovery. The project explores the use of Communities of Practice (CoP) versus self-paced learning modules to examine 1) the impact over time of a faculty development curriculum grounded in a humanistic-educative framework for promoting a human-centered model to engineering education, and 2) the impact of a CoP to compel faculty to incorporate learning theory as part of their teaching practice. A multi-site, longitudinal, quasi-experimental, explanatory sequential mixed-methods design will be used. The broader impacts of this project will advance the current state of engineering pedagogy by empowering faculty members with a conceptual understanding of learning theory. Findings from this project can revolutionize faculty training and increase the use of evidence-based teaching practices beyond the research sites, in other disciplines, and provide a launchpad for larger studies. This project aligns with the IUSE goals of “faculty professional development to increase the use of evidence-based teaching practices”; “research on sustained change processes involved in adopting evidence-based and effective instruction.”

Capturing the impact of realistic multicomponent fuels in high-pressure spray combustion simulations

$318,990 – National Science Foundation

  • Simcha Singer (PI) and Dr. Somesh Roy, assistant professors of mechanical engineering in the Opus College of Engineering
  • Abstract: The objective of this project is to improve fundamental understanding of the impact of the multicomponent nature of hydrocarbon fuels on combustion behavior, and particularly soot formation, in high-pressure spray combustion. The approach will create a novel droplet vaporization and adaptive surrogate model to account for the multicomponent nature of realistic fuels with accuracy and efficiency and integrate the model into a large eddy simulation. This simulation will be broad-based, open source, and applicable to a variety of multiphase flow problems. It is hypothesized that the impacts of preferential vaporization on ignition and pollutant formation differ from current understandings based on single component and surrogate fuel approaches.

Ground Source Heat Pump at MMSD Feasibility Project

$93,155 – Milwaukee Metropolitan Sewerage District

  • Anthony Bowman (PI), research assistant professor, and Dr. Hyunjae Park, research professor, both of mechanical engineering in the Opus College of Engineering
  • Abstract: This award funds a feasibility study to integrate a ground source heat pump into the wastewater treatment process at Milwaukee Metropolitan Sewerage District with the assistance of undergraduate students, advised by faculty in the Departments of Mechanical Engineering and Civil, Construction and Environmental Engineering at Marquette. The feasibility study supports sustainability and energy efficiency objectives of MMSD’s 2035 Vision.

Production of wastewater scum biodiesel and a chemical investigation for sulfur removal

$81,479 – Milwaukee Metropolitan Sewerage District

  • Damian Kokkin (PI), research associate professor of chemistry in the Klingler College of Arts and Sciences, and Dr. Patrick McNamara, associate professor of civil, construction and environment engineering in the Opus College of Engineering
  • Abstract: This award funds a research program directed towards the production of biodiesel from wastewater scum. Biodiesel will be produced from scum once a month over a 12-month period to monitor the seasonality in the produced biodiesel and if any specific treatments will be required. Additionally, a chemical route for sulfur molecule removal will be investigated to identify an alternate synthetic route that does not include the energy expensive final vacuum distillation step.

Corticospinal organization and bimanual coordination in children with hemiparesis

$25,000 – National Institutes of Health/National Pediatric Rehabilitation Resource Center (C-PROGRESS)

  • Samuel Nemanich (PI), assistant professor of occupational therapy, and Dr. Sheila Schindler-Ivens, associate professor of physical therapy, in the College of Health Sciences
  • Abstract: The primary objective of this project is to determine if atypical brain development is associated with bimanual coordination in children with hemiparetic cerebral palsy. The extant literature supports the idea that children with over-reliance on the undamaged brain exhibit worse function during movements requiring a single limb; however, there is little to no evidence to support this hypothesis as relates to bimanual coordination and function.

Diaphragm pacing as a rehabilitative intervention following cervical spinal cord injury

$5,000 – American Physical Therapy Association

  • Taylor Holmes (PI), graduate assistant, and Kristi Streeter, assistant professor, in the Department of Physical Therapy in the College of Health Sciences
  • Abstract: The purpose of this project is to determine the rehabilitative utility of repeated diaphragm pacing exposure following spinal cord injury. This project represents a novel investigation into an already established intervention and has the potential to begin a paradigm shift in clinical practice that could positively impact patients and health systems following spinal cord injury.

Neural Mechanisms of Response Inhibition Training for Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder and Related Conditions

$158,890 – National Institutes of Health (University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee)

  • Doug Woods, professor of psychology in the Klingler College of Arts and Sciences
  • Abstract: The objective of this project is to examine the impact of a novel computerized intervention, response inhibition training, on neural indices of response inhibition, and to examine the mechanistic link between engagement of the neural response inhibition targets and change in symptoms in a randomized clinical trial for individuals with OCD, trichotillomania, and/or skin picking disorders.

Improving health equity through community partnerships

$49,982 – American Association of Retired Persons

  • Sylvia Peña, assistant professor, Dr. Marilyn Frenn, professor, and Dr. Terry Garcia, director of Inclusive Excellence and Student Success, in the College of Nursing
  • Abstract: This project aims to dismantle structural racism in various ways through a partnership between the Milwaukee Christian Center and the College of Nursing. This project will focus on the Latinx population and nutrition. The nursing students will complete a community health clinical at the Milwaukee Christian Center with a focus on nutrition, as well as simulation at the university’s sim center, prior to beginning their clinical experience. For successful completion of this partnership, the proposed project would include the hiring of a bilingual clinical instructor who speaks both English and Spanish.

Previously announced: