A record number of faculty and staff who were awarded millions of dollars for research at California State University, Northridge were recognized at the annual Principal Investigators (PI) Recognition Celebration on May 11.
“Tonight’s event represents the best of our university,” President Dianne F. Harrison said. “Our Principal Investigators are taking such time and effort to further explore knowledge and creativity, making important contributions to their disciplines, to society and most importantly to our students.”
The University Corporation and the Office of Research and Sponsored Projects invited 190 faculty and staff researchers to the Valley Performing Arts Center. All PIs — the lead researcher on a funded project and co-PIs who have active projects as of Dec. 31, 2015 — were recognized at the event.
Harrison applauded the efforts of the university’s researchers who are working on approximately 230 projects. The president said that for 2015-16, CSUN expects to exceed its all-time record of $31 million in sponsored program expenditures. Between July 2015 and March 2016, CSUN more than doubled the number of students employed by funded projects to 500, and those students have received $1.7 million in salaries and $2 million in stipends.
“Research and creative activity provide a unique experience to our students,” Harrison said. “The advantages of such involvement in experiential learning are generally known and documented. I strongly believe that the extensive involvement of CSUN undergrads and grads in sponsored research and service activities adds value to a CSUN education.”
Yi Li, provost and vice president for academic affairs, also thanked and congratulated the researchers for their work.
President Harrison initiated the annual recognition event in 2012 to highlight the importance of research, creative and service endeavors in the life of the university. Those recognized are researching a range of topics from the study of the ecology of marine fish to projects that support science, technology, engineering and math (STEM) education and the retention of underrepresented minority students, to programs that support efforts to recruit and support former foster care youth.