TTUHSC Research Progress Update
From a research perspective, we are an Institution transitioning into adulthood.
Many of us were disappointed that the SOM is no longer eligible for NIH R15 awards. The R15 is an NIH mechanism reserved for Institutions with only modest NIH funding. While distressing, it is also a sign that we are advancing in our research mission-- we are no longer viewed by NIH as having only modest funding.
For those watching, we are starting to reach milestones that are consistent with established research universities:
- Late last week, we learned the good news that we have achieved full AAHRPP accreditation, the gold standard associated with patient protections in research protocols. The full story is here: https://www.ttuhsc.edu/research/files/aahrpp.pdf . We are now one of 12 Institutions in the State of Texas to have achieved this distinction. We have been AAALAC accredited for years, of course. https://www.ttuhsc.edu/centers/larc/
Some other signs of growth and increased prominence:
- Dr. Siddiqui has a vigorous Gates research program.
- Dr. Abbruscato has been named Chair of an NIH Study Section.
- I am serving on the Board of Scientific Councilors oversight committee for the National Institute of Child Health and Human Development.
- Between 2013 and 2014, we increased our grant portfolio by 20% and expect an increase this year. This is significant because we are increasing our funding at a much faster rate than the NIH budget.
- We have students with independent funding for stipends.
- New basic science heads have recruited new faculty and introduced new areas of research.
- Our increased interactions with TTU and between researchers on our campuses has been fruitful.
- Presidential Collaborative grants were a big hit and EP seminars are well-attended. There is a true interest in interactive research.
I have heard faculty say that we can’t compete with the “big guys” because we are not as good as them. That our resources are not as good.
I recently got a grant review back that refers to the environment here as: “excellent.”
Others have seen similar comments on their reviews.
The redesigned website https://www.ttuhsc.edu/research/ is being used as a resource by the faculty. Here are the growth figures, comparing year-to-year use:
Soon you will see a major construction initiative—providing more research environment and support services on several campuses. We will construct a campus entry in Lubbock. We have major advantages in recruiting in that we can offer excellent new space and fully funded faculty lines. Those are rare advantages in the current research environment. We live in a safe town with a high standard of living and good schools. All good features for recruitment.
Federal support for research funding is quickly becoming a bipartisan issue—and the 21st Century Cures Act, already passed the House, promises major increases in NIH funding—we are positioned to take advantage of this.
Be proud. We are moving forward.
Spring 2015 Progress Letter
Winter 2015 Progress Letter
Fall 2014 Progress Letter
Summer 2014 Progress Letter