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Call for Superclusters Goes Out, Infectious Disease Program Grandfathered In
When the Supercluster Request for Proposals went out April 14, the College of Veterinary Medicine and Biomedical Sciences was honored to have one of its Programs of Research and Scholarly Excellence -- the Program in Infectious Disease - expanded and grandfathered in as Colorado State University 's first designated Supercluster.
"Designation as a Supercluster is a great tribute to all the individuals who have worked so hard to create an internationally renowned program in infectious disease here at Colorado State University," said Dr. Lance Perryman, Dean of the College of Veterinary Medicine and Biomedical Sciences. "When you look back on where this program started, and where it is today, what more could you ask?"
Dr. Perryman noted that during the past several years, the College has seen a huge investment in the Infectious Disease Program by the University, the College and numerous federal programs. This includes a $40 million grant to establish a Regional Center of Excellence for Biodefense and Emerging Infectious Diseases at CSU, and funding for construction projects such as the Regional Biocontainment Laboratory, the Bioenvironmental Research Building, new laboratory facilities for the Veterinary Diagnostic Laboratory and more.
"The Infectious Disease Supercluster serves as a model for the rest of the University on how to develop a strong, multidisciplinary program that addresses a global challenge," said Dr. Perryman. "The University is looking for programs that address a significant societal need, have demonstrated excellence of multidisciplinary teams, engage external partners from both the public and private sectors, gain value from Supercluster status, are in line with the goals of the University Strategic Plan, and can demonstrate a rationale for additional program funds from the University."
Even with pre-approval, Dr. Jeff Wilusz, Professor and Head of the Department of Microbiology, Immunology and Pathology, provided the Supercluster Committee with an organizational plan, budget and supporting documents for the Infectious Disease Supercluster. These types of documents are what other applicants are required to provide by Oct. 16, 2006, the deadline for Supercluster pre-proposals. Dr. Perryman expected a number of other CVMBS programs to apply for Supercluster designation. The designation provides programs with additional institutional support ($200,000-$400,000 annually), allow programs better leverage to obtain external funding, and incorporate greater international research components as consistent with the program's research focus.
The Supercluster RFP can be accessed at http://www.provost.colostate.edu/files/Superclusterrfp.doc. The Superclusters are in support of Goal 22 of CSU's Strategic Plan "Setting the Standard for the 21st Century: Strategic Directions." The Office of the Provost/Senior Vice President and the Office of the Vice President for Research are managing the Supercluster RFP.