January 24, 2014 –Fort Valley State University faculty and staff who apply for funding from external organizations depend on Doris Nyaga, the campus’ pre-awards coordinator, as their go-to expert to help with the application, strategy and development of winning grant proposals. Nyaga not only notifies faculty and staff about new funding opportunities, she also helps grant seekers to develop academic programs and initiatives, and ensure existing ones comply with the agency’s guidelines.
Soon, Nyaga will be starting a new role when she shares her professional advice about the process with one of the country’s leading grant organizations. The American Association of State Colleges and Universities’ Grants Resource Center named Nyaga to serve on its six-member advisory board. The pre-awards coordinator will be one of two advisory members representing institutions that have enrollments under 5,000 students. The appointment will last for a year.
“This is certainly a public affirmation of the excellence of FVSU’s faculty and staff’s achievements in sponsored research and programs,” said Nyaga. “It is an honor for the university to be represented in a team responsible for guiding the strategic vision and direction of an organization such as the GRC, which works very closely with federal and state agencies, corporations and foundations. This undoubtedly gives us a voice at the table.”
The AASCU is a Washington-based higher education association of nearly 420 public colleges, universities and systems whose members share learning and teaching-centered environments to advance economic and cultural development across the nation.
The group’s Grants Resource Center, founded in 1967, provides campuses with comprehensive federal and private information to help boost the success rates for faculty and administrators who are applying for grants. Additionally, the GRC is responsible for improving the grant systems and processes to increase members’ competitiveness and efficiency. GRC membership is a premium service open to public and private higher education institutions that offer four-year and graduate degrees.
Nyaga has worked closely with the GRC for several years during her time as a pre-awards coordinator. She was selected because of FVSU’s impressive ability to secure grant funding, even though it is a smaller campus.
Dr. Melody Carter, vice president of External Affairs and executive director of the FVSU Foundation, Inc. says that Nyaga’s selection is an important recognition for the school.
“I believe that Ms. Nyaga’s selection to serve upon the advisory board of the nation’s leading grant organization is an important acknowledgement of her professionalism and skill as the campus’ pre-awards coordinator,” said Carter. “This honor also recognizes the hard work of our campus grant writers who continue raising funds for academic initiatives at FVSU. I have no doubt that Ms. Nyaga will represent the university well. The entire university is very proud of her accomplishment.”
Nyaga’s duties will include providing advice to the GRC from an institutional perspective about external funding. Additionally, FVSU’s pre-awards coordinator will help develop an agenda for the organization to engage the federal government about ongoing needs in higher education. She will also actively participate in the organization’s task forces. Since 2007, the center has convened three national task forces (Grants.gov, Economic and Community Development, and Health Research and Education) that have received support from senior federal government personnel and administrators from member-institutions.
The pre-awards coordinator will also advocate programmatic needs for higher education.
For more information, please contact the Office of Sponsored Programs at (478) 825-6144.
Christina D. Milton,writer
Fort Valley State University
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