Dean's office delays notification on grants

by Karla Kingsley | 5/29/02 5:00am

Originally scheduled to be awarded May 20, the College's dean of the faculty research grants --newly created this year to fund summer research for students -- have yet to be awarded, leaving many students in the lurch as the summer fast approaches.

In February the College announced it would fund three students -- at $5,500 apiece -- to support travel and expenses.

"The idea is that if a student wants academic experience but needs to get a leave-term job to save up money, we would provide them with a job that pays the equivalent of a summer job to conduct research," Dean of the Faculty Jamshed Bharucha said.

According to Assistant Dean of the Faculty Sandra Gregg, the grants will be distributed to three of the 24 applicants. Yet although decisions were originally slated to be announced May 20, applicants are still awaiting news.

In an email sent to the applicants, Gregg informed them that the decision would not be made until the week of June 3, and apologized for the delay.

Some student applicants contacted by The Dartmouth were upset by the delay, and also by the lack of explanation.

"When I got the email, I wanted to know why this had happened, and the email didn't explain why the delay was taking place," one applicant said.

Another applicant said that although she was able to go ahead with her plans for research over the summer, it was only because she had applied for other grants as well.

Yet funds from the dean of faculty research grant would "change the scope of what I am able to do," she said. Not knowing if she will get the grant "does sort of slow down the planning."

Havila Unrein '03 applied for other grants and will be able to research, thanks to what another applicant dubbed the "generous opportunities" available from sources such as the Dickey Center.

Gregg explained that all three assistant deans of faculty are involved in the awarding of the grants, slowing down the decision making process.

A conflict in the deans' schedules is the reason for the delay, Gregg said, and acknowledged that students were "probably annoyed."

According to Gregg, the three deans -- Richard Wright, Lenore Grenoble and Martin Wybourne -- first read the applications and then make the final decision at a meeting.

Grenoble noted that a meeting had been scheduled for May 17, but "two of us had conflicts with the previous meeting time." She added that they were not trying to form an obstacle for students, but, "We are just all really booked. We are aware of the deadline and the time."

When first contacted by The Dartmouth, Grenoble said that the meeting had yet to be rescheduled. "We are trying to reschedule that meeting, I honestly don't know when it is going to be scheduled," she said, adding that she hoped students wouldn't have to pass up research opportunities because of the delay.

Later, however, Gregg said in an email to The Dartmouth that the meeting had been rescheduled for May 30.