Topping $75 million, UT research funding creates jobs, economic boon

September 21, 2010 | News, UToday



External research funding at The University of Toledo reached more than $75 million, a figure UT officials noted supported fully or partially nearly 2,000 jobs.

Dr. Jared Anderson, associate professor of chemistry, loaded an autosampler to generate calibration curves on a gas chromatograph. Since joining UT in 2005, he has received more than $850,000 in external funding for his work.

Dr. Jared Anderson, associate professor of chemistry, loaded an autosampler to generate calibration curves on a gas chromatograph. Since joining UT in 2005, he has received more than $850,000 in external funding for his work.

UT’s fiscal year 2010 funding of $75,160,908 is up $3.6 million from last year’s figure of $71.5 million, a 5 percent increase. Of that total, federal research funding increased to nearly $62.5 million, a number tied directly to the pay of 1,895 individuals, said Dr. Frank Calzonetti, vice president for research and economic development.

“I am very pleased with the sharp increase in awards from federal agencies,” Calzonetti said. “Research and the creation of new knowledge is one of the primary responsibilities of a university. At UT, this effort has led to the creation of thousands of jobs, and we expect to add hundreds more over the next few years.”

Calzonetti said that as newly funded projects are fully developed, UT will add more staffing to support them.

“Building the research enterprise at UT helps to create more local jobs and is another way that the University contributes to local economic development,” he said.

“The strong support for UT’s research programs by Senator George Voinovich, Senator Sherrod Brown and Representative Marcy Kaptur has helped us increase our federal support and open up new relationships with federal agencies. We also appreciate the support of Representative Bob Latta in helping to secure funding for collaborative projects with Bowling Green State University.”

UT’s College of Medicine saw the biggest jump in research, reaching nearly $27 million in 2010 after hitting about $22.5 million last year. The college was at $18.3 million in fiscal year 2008.

UT’s College of Arts and Sciences had more than $22 million in external funding, and the College of Engineering increased more than $1 million to reach $11.6 million in 2010.

Just as important as the funding levels was the way much of that increase occurred, said Dr. James Trempe, interim senior director of research administration, referencing increased collaboration across campuses.

“Our significant increase in external funding offers an example of the effects that the UT-MUO merger has had on research collaborations,” Trempe said. “There were 11 cross-campus collaborations funded in fiscal year 2010, providing clear evidence the merger has created new synergies within the UT research community.”

“So many of the advancements in science, technology and our understanding of the world around us have come from university research,” Calzonetti said, pointing to UT’s prominence in solar and alternative energy as one high-profile example of the way university research can transform a region over time. “We’re going to continue to grow our research base, and our impact on society will be that much more powerful every year.”