The College of Health and Public Affairs has launched the University of Central Florida’s first college-based fellowship program to promote the professional development of faculty researchers. Ten faculty members are participating in the yearlong program. Each has the goal of submitting a grant proposal to a federal funding agency by the end of the academic year.

Over the next nine months, the COHPA Research Faculty Fellows will attend presentations by experts on topics such as federal grant applications, analytical models, collaborative research, human subject protection, budget preparation and grants management. They will also complete assignments and participate in online discussions through Webcourses@UCF, as well as receive mentoring and feedback from seasoned researchers. The program is designed to guide the fellows as each expands a three-page preliminary proposal, submitted as part of an application to the program, into a full-fledged grant application.

A college committee selected the fellows based largely on the scientific merit, likelihood of funding, feasibility and significance of their preliminary proposal, according to Tom Wan, the college’s associate dean for research and director of the Doctoral Program in Public Affairs.

The first group of fellows includes instructors and assistant and associate professors. Among them is physical therapy Instructor William Hanney, who expressed his excitement about the new program: “I’ve always been interested in doing research, but until now I haven’t had a platform on which to get started. I look forward to completing my first proposal.”

At the program’s first meeting, held Aug. 27, Wan told the fellows they had been chosen to help foster research collaboration in the college. “We have a very exciting program for you,” Wan said. “However, there are also expectations. By the end of the period, you will be very proud of your accomplishments.”