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Transform and develop research centers to address the new scientific challenges of the 21st century.


LEAD: Dr. Dean Appling, Associate Dean for Research and Facilities


The College is undertaking a comprehensive review of all centers, institutes, and research units in response to changing rules and criteria for organized research units (ORUs) at the university. This review considers the scientific value and contributions of each research center while also confirming that they hold the correct designations and are meeting established policy requirements. Our larger ORUs are undergoing external reviews in conjunction with the seven-year review cycles of our departments. In 2015-2016 alone, the Institute for Cellular and Molecular Biology, the Institute for Neuroscience, and the Center for Learning and Memory were given highly favorable reviews and praised for their significant contributions to the research mission of the College, their support of graduate education and their significant roles in retaining top-quality faculty. The College established a new research center, the LaMontagne Center for Infectious Disease, to facilitate basic and translational research into the molecular mechanisms of pathogenesis and to develop strategies for prevention and therapy. The College’s new Catalyst Grant Program and instrumentation grants are available to assist faculty and center researchers seeking to promote interdisciplinary or cutting-edge research at the interface of existing and emerging fields.

In 2015-16, the College completed its task of reclassifying a number of ORUs to departmental centers and institutes. In the Summer of 2016, Dean Hicke appointed a 21st Century Research Task Force, composed of a diverse group of faculty across the College, to address a series of issues relevant to our research mission. Members worked collaboratively to produce a series of recommendations for developing and supporting a nimble and responsive environment within the College to help it accomplish its research mission. 



  • All organized research centers and institutes will enhance the research mission of the College.



The College:

  • measures the contributions of centers and institutes to interdepartmental research activity by tracking publications and new grant funding generated by research centers
  • continues periodic reviews of remaining ORUs