2nd Call for Proposals – Interdisciplinary Graduate Education Program (IGEP)

Program Description:

The Graduate School will support three new IGEPs beginning Spring 2012 for planning purposes, with the first cohorts of students enrolling Fall 2012.  The purpose of the IGEPs is to promote and sustain support of interdisciplinary graduate research and education at Virginia Tech.  Each IGEP will address a major fundamental problem or complex societal issue requiring an interdisciplinary team of scholars. Each new IGEP will be awarded four funded GRA positions from the Graduate School.  In addition, each IGEP will receive funding for recruitment, operations, and a shared staff person (one staff person for two or three IGEPs).

Each IGEP will develop its own criteria on which to be evaluated.  The criteria would be finalized based upon input from the Deans and final review by the Graduate School.  The plan for sustainability of the program should include, but is not limited to, the following:

  • Statement of commitment to reach a steady state of graduate students (n=10?) by year 3 of the IGEP, with plans of how the IGEP will grow in numbers beyond that steady state.
  • How and when the GRAD 5134 course will be taught.
  • Plan of how the IGEP PIs will obtain additional funding as appropriate.
  • Evaluation of return on investment: i.e. grants, publications, presentations, time for students to complete degree, and other quantitative measures that will be accomplished in 3 years.

The criteria set forth in the plan must be met by the third year of funding at which time the decision will be made about the continuation of funding for the IGEP. 

Interested groups of faculty representing several disciplines should submit proposals for new IGEPs electronically to Karen P. DePauw, Vice President and Dean of the Graduate School at kpdepauw@vt.edu by November 11, 2011.  Proposals will be peer reviewed and should be no more than five pages in length (single space, 12 point font, and 1” margins) with ten pages as maximum including appendices.  Results will be announced by the end of January 2012 so that planning can occur in the Spring semester.    


Proposal Description and Requirements:

a)      Title of proposed program; names of colleges (minimum of two) and departments (minimum of three) involved; names and contact information of faculty members involved. Limit: 1 page.

b)      Introduction: rationale and need for interdisciplinary graduate education program.  Identify education and research goals of the IGEP. Limit: 1 page.

c)      Description: of long term goals and intellectual focus of proposed program (existing courses and courses needed); student recruitment and retention plan; plan for securing funds for assistantships; plan to reach and sustain a steady state of graduate students; and plan for program assessment and outcomes.  All proposals must include a plan of utilization of the already established GRAD 5134 Interdisciplinary Research course at least once in a three year period. Limit: 3 pages.

d)      Support: proposed programs should provide a letter documenting support from their Departments and Deans. Appendix. 

e)      Desired criteria: Plan for securing extramural funding over time; plan to reach across the disciplinary landscape to incorporate disciplines (particularly the Social Sciences and Humanities) and integrate within the proposed curriculum. Appendix.