RCO Supports Islander and Community Research through Grant Writing Training

CORPUS CHRISTI, Texas – Encouraging innovative research with real-world impact, supporting partnerships and interdisciplinary collaborations, and providing unique opportunities are all part of Texas A&M University-Corpus Christi’s mission. Support for these ideas drove the Grant Writing Workshop sponsored by the Division of Research, Commercialization, and Outreach (RCO) and Institutional Advancement. During the workshop, faculty, staff, and graduate students were able to develop or improve their grant writing skills, learn how to stand out with their grant proposals, and form partnerships with other Islanders and researchers.

“We have researchers creating knowledge about local fisheries, the economic health of the region, and how unmanned aerial systems will be further integrated into our lives,” said Daniel Riechers, senior research development officer at RCO. “But to continue their research, our faculty, staff, and students need to apply to and be awarded financial support.”

This year, RCO also invited community members to attend the training. Many researchers on our campus partner with local non-profit organizations, so it only made sense to extend open seats in this training to them. Warren Phipps, executive director of the Coastal Bend Disaster Recovery Group – a charitable organization that seeks to help provide hope and assistance to low-income families recovering from Hurricane Harvey – was one of those community members.   

“I’m very grateful to the University for allowing me this opportunity to attend the workshop, it’s been wonderful,” Phipps said. “I’ve met a diverse group of people here and I find it very beneficial to connect with them as well as learn the basic principles and strategy behind grant writing.”  

The grant writing workshop was comprised of three sessions, the first of which was a “Strategic Approach to Competitive Grant Seeking.” This session taught participants about the grant seeking cycle, laying the groundwork for successful grant seeking, building competitiveness, and writing strong proposals.

“I think these workshops are very effective,” said Dr. Ruby Mehrubeoglu, professor of Engineering. “It gets us thinking about how to work on and create effective proposals, and for me, it’s also about establishing collaborations and meeting new people through these experiences.”

RCO added two more sessions to the roster this year. The “Winning Support from Foundations” portion of the training taught attendees about key types of foundations, how to connect with those foundations, long-term relationship building, and stewardship. Finally, the last session, “Risks and Rewards of Team-Based Proposals,” covered knowing why, how, and when to collaborate; building an effective team, and managing team-based proposal development. Training programs and workshops are available via RCO year-round, for more information interested Islanders can visit their website.