Grants and Awards

Bill Ong Hing and Jacqueline Brown, School of Law

Bill Ong Hing and Jacqueline Brown, School of Law, have been awarded $80,000 from Sonoma County Secure Families Collaborative through June 30, 2024. Funding from this will continue supporting legal representation of immigrants who live in Sonoma County for continued removal of defense actions.

Melissa Canlas and Christine Yeh, School of Education

School of Education faculty Melissa Canlas (IME) and Christine Yeh (CPSY) (Principal Investigators) have been awarded a U.S. Department of Education Asian American and Native American Pacific Islander-Serving Institutions (AANAPISI) program grant titled “Building Institutional Capacity through an Integrated AAPI Center for Educational Success (ACES).” AANAPISI grants support efforts by Asian American and Native American Pacific Islander-serving institutions to improve and expand services for Asian Americans and Native American Pacific Islanders and low-income individuals. Dr. Hsiu-Lan Cheng (CPSY) will work as the program evaluator for this project. The grant will provide USF with $1.4 million from 2023–27 for a range of programs to support our AAPI students. This new initiative includes four university-wide components: a dedicated center for AAPI students; faculty learning communities; staff and leadership learning communities; and student leadership development communities.

Chanda Briggs, Instruction & Outreach Department and Claire Sharifi, Reference Department

Chanda Briggs and Claire Sharifi have received a $1,500 grant from the Network of the National Library of Medicine via the National Institutes of Health. The Collection Equity Award will allow Gleeson Library at the University of San Francisco to expand print and electronic monograph resources specific to disability studies, disability justice, and the health of people with disabilities. (June 1, 2023)

Melissa Canlas, Christine Yeh, and Hsiu-Lan Cheng

Melissa Canlas, Christine Yeh, and Hsiu-Lan Cheng, School of Education, has received a $1,412,561 Asian American and Native American Pacific Islander-Serving Institutions (AANAPISI) award from the US Department of Education. This grant award will be used to develop an integrated Asian American and Pacific Islander (AAPI) Center for Educational Success (ACES). ACES will direct the implementation of 3 learning communities – faculty learning communities, staff and leadership communities, and student leadership development communities – to expand the institution’s capacity to improve AAPI students’ social, emotional, academic, and career development. (October 1, 2023)

Lara Bazelon

The USF School of Law Racial Justice Clinic, directed by Professor Lara Bazelon, has received a $50,000 Racial Justice Act for All Implementation Grant from the Office of the State Public Defender. The Racial Justice Clinic is the only non-public defender agency chosen to receive this funding. The award will be used to support the USF Racial Justice Clinic’s Mail Project in response to the 2021 California Racial Justice Act (RJA). The goal of the Mail Project is to coordinate and streamline the effort to identify tens of thousands of people within the California prisons and jails who may be eligible for RJA relief, analyze viable claims, and connect petitioners with legal resources necessary to file a successful RJA claim.  (December 21, 2023)

Annette Regan, School of Nursing and Health Professions

Annette Regan, School of Nursing and Health Professions, has received a $25,000 research award from the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services Centers for Disease Control and Prevention via Auckland UniServices Limited, a subsidiary of the University of Auckland, New Zealand. This grant project is aimed at assessing the safety of COVID-19 vaccines across large and diverse populations using the 17-country Global Vaccine Data Network Consortium. (November 1, 2023)

David Saah, College of Arts and Sciences

David Saah, College of Arts and Sciences, has received a $400,000 research subaward from the University of California Office of the President via the University of California, San Diego. This grant will extend the BurnPro3D platform to include co-development and implementation with CAL FIRE to expand the toolkit for ramping up prescribed burns and prescribed fire training in line with the Governor’s Strategic Plan for Expanding the Use of Beneficial Fire to build forest and community resilience. Furthermore, it will assist the California Wildfire and Forest Resilience Task Force and Million Acre Strategy and support priorities under California’s Climate Adaptation Strategy to increase collaboration and make science-based decisions for strengthening vulnerable communities and accelerating climate resilience of natural systems. (October 1, 2023)

Amrita Bhattacharrya, Department of Chemistry, College of Arts and Sciences

Amrita Bhattacharrya, Department of Chemistry, College of Arts and Sciences, has received a $910,000 research award from the Department of Energy. This grant project is aimed at detecting, quantifying, and characterizing anaerobic microsites at current DOE-ESS natural floodplain research sites to identify correlations between site characteristics and methane production. Utilizing the Laboratory for Observing Anaerobic Microsites in Soils (LOAMS) approach, this project will examine the role of anaerobic microsites in methanogenesis and metal redox chemistry across spatial and temporal scales. (September 7, 2023)

College of Arts and Sciences

Gennifer Smith, Engineering, College of Arts and Sciences, has received a $62,574 subaward from University of Colorado Denver via NIH (National Institute of Health). The funded project aims to build a smartphone attachment and app that will allow low-resource or remote labs to perform 3D tomographic microscopy of millimeter-sized samples. The project takes advantage of the ubiquitous and high-quality computing and imaging hardware available in smartphones to make a 3D-microscopy attachment that is inexpensive and portable. (August 18, 2023).

Bill Ong Hing, School of Law

Bill Ong Hing, School of Law, was given a $391,038 subaward from the Central American Resource Center of Northern California as part of the San Francisco Immigrant Legal Defense Collaborative. Funding from this award will continue to support legal representation of unaccompanied children, families, and individuals with cases in San Francisco’s Immigration Court. (July 27, 2023).

Chanda Briggs and Claire Sharifi, Gleeson Library

Chanda Briggs and Claire Sharifi, Gleeson Library, have received a $1,500 grant from the Network of the National Library of Medicine via the National Institutes of Health. The Collection Equity Award will allow Gleeson Library at the University of San Francisco to expand print and electronic monograph resources specific to disability studies, disability justice, and the health of people with disabilities. (June 1, 2023)

Nicole Thometz, College of Arts and Sciences

Nicole Thometz, College of Arts and Sciences, has received a $43,166 research subaward from the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration via the Regents of the University of California, Santa Cruz. This grant project is aimed at gathering data that will be used in modelling efforts, along with data from wild seals collected by NOAA, to better understand ice seal population energy requirements and trophic roles. Dr. Thometz will contribute physiological data from seals in human care specifically, bearded seals, ringed seals, and spotted seals to this collaborative effort to help fill current information gaps concerning the trophic role of Alaskan seals. (June 1, 2023)

Claire Sharifi, Reference Department

Claire Sharifi, Reference Department, has received a $1,500 grant from the Network of the National Library of Medicine via the National Institutes of Health. The Collection Equity Award will allow Gleeson Library at the University of San Francisco to expand print and electronic monograph resources specific to disability studies, disability justice, and the health of people with disabilities. (June 1, 2023)

Omar Franco, School of Education

Omar Franco, School of Education, a recently hired staff, brings along with him three U.S. Department of Education grants, namely the TRIO Upward Bound Awards, from year 2 to 5, totaling $4,536,851.11, which he received while at Holy Names University. The TRIO Upward Bound Project supports Oakland High School; Fremont High School; Castlemont High School; and Tennyson High School students both in and out of the classroom with: tutoring; financial literacy; college and career exploration; intensive summer courses; social, emotional, and academic support; high school and college navigation advising; and many others. (May 2023).

David Saah, College of Arts and Sciences

David Saah, College of Arts and Sciences, has received a $45,960 subaward from Spatial Informatics Group (SIG) granted by the United States Department of Agriculture. For wildland fire events identified through this project, Janice Coen will initialize ensembles of CAWFE coupled weather-fire simulations with ensembles of weather forecasts and a probability-based range of fuel properties that represent the uncertainty in current conditions and simulate the resultant fire behavior. Those ensemble weather forecasts include National Centers for Environmental Prediction ensembles of weather forecasts of various scales, such as the Short Range Ensemble Forecast (SREF) and the Global Ensemble Forecast System (GFS). Probabilistic fuel information will be derived from databases such as the North American Wildland Fuels Database. Dr. David Saah and Dr. Coen will contribute to devising methodologies to display and communicate probabilistic fire spread predictions to potential users with a wide range of technical knowledge. Dr. Coen will lead a scientific publication outcome and participate in user engagement. (March 23, 2023).

William J. Bosl, School of Nursing and Health Professions

William J. Bosl, School of Nursing and Health Professions, has received a $49,750 subaward from Boston Children’s Hospital (BCH) via National Institutes of Health. The University of San Francisco will collaborate with Boston Children’s Hospital on project titled, “Neural, Physiological, Behavioral, and Environmental Risk Markers of Anxiety from Infancy to Adolescence. Dr. Bosl will collaborate with PI at BCH and other co-Investigator to 1) develop data analysis and machine learning design, including robust statistical analysis plans; 2) review EEG recordings to ensure reliability of collection and; 3) Implement and validate all EEG signal processing and machine learning analysis. (June 14, 2023).

Bill Ong Hing, School of Law

Bill Ong Hing, School of Law, has been awarded $1,050,000 from California Department of Social Services. This is a continuing grant to represent Unaccompanied Undocumented Minors (UUM). The legal services include culturally, and linguistically appropriate services provided by attorneys, paralegals, interpreters and other support staff for state court proceedings, federal immigration proceedings, and any appeals arising from those proceedings. This funding is intended to serve individuals who cannot otherwise afford an attorney or legal representation. (April 17, 2023)

William J. Bosl, School of Nursing and Health Professions

William J. Bosl, School of Nursing and Health Professions, has received a $856,304 grant from the Department of Defense (DOD) - Congressionally Directed Medical Research Program (CDMRP). The University of San Francisco will collaborate with Boston Children’s Hospital on project titled, “Biomarkers for Nocturnal Epileptiform Discharges in Children with Autism.”  The project consists of

  • Specific Aim 1- Compute and evaluate biomarkers for IEDs in 100 children without autism spectrum disorder (ASD) Ages 3 to 13;
  • Specific Aim 2 - Compute and evaluate biomarkers for IEDs in 100 children with ASD ages 3 to 13; and
  • Specific Aim 3 - Compare computed biomarkers from Aims 1 and 2.

While meeting the goals of our specific aims for this project, USF and BCH also hope to gain access to data from patients with epilepsy and with both ASD and epilepsy through other active research projects that the Dr. Bosl is pursuing with the epilepsy center. (April 14, 2023).

Angela Banks, School of Nursing and Health Professions

Angela Banks, School of Nursing and Health Professions, has received a $810,000 grant from the Department of Health Care Access and Information. The University of San Francisco Song Brown RN Program strives to increase education opportunities for ethnic minorities, such as Hispanic/Latinos, underrepresented in the nursing field. This grant supports USF’s partnership with Immaculate Conception Academy to identify potential Hispanic/Latino nursing students, and the training and retention activities of the nursing program. (April 12, 2023).

Hajij Mustafa, College of Arts and Sciences

Hajij Mustafa, College of Arts and Sciences, has received a $195,264 grant from the National Science Foundation. This grant will bring more insight to Topological Deep Learning (TDL), a promising new frontier field that combines deep learning with Topological Data Analysis (TDA) to extract and analyze topological features in data. TDL has potential applications in various domains, including computer vision, time series analysis, biology, physics and complex networks. By leveraging the topological structure of data, TDL models can improve the accuracy and interpretability of machine learning models, leading to better insights and predictions. (April 3, 2023).

William J. Bosl, School of Nursing and Health Professions

William J. Bosl, School of Nursing and Health Professions, has received a $865,304 grant from the Department of Defense – Congressionally Directed Medical Research Program – Autism Research (CDMRP-AR). More than half of children with autism have nocturnal epileptiform discharges, which are believed to interfere with learning and cognitive development. Yet, these discharges are rarely detected. The proposed project is based on a hypothesis by Prof. Bosl that epileptic brain dynamics can be detected from short awake EEG measurements. If successful, this would enable routine testing of all children for nocturnal epileptic brain activity and early treatment. Prof. Bosl will work closely with Dr. Marski, director of the Sleep Clinic at Boston Children’s Hospital (BCH), to identify and evaluate patients for participation in this project. (April 7, 2023).

James Wilson, Jeff Hamrick, Shan Wan and Daniel Jerison

James Wilson, Jeff Hamrick, Shan Wan and Daniel Jerison, College of Arts and Sciences, have received a $15,000 grant from the National Science Foundation. This grant will help fund the 3rdAnnual Data Institute Conference held at USF drawing leaders of industry and academia to explore the latest theoretical advances and technological applications in data science to promote the next generation of cross-disciplinary research. This conference will make an equally important impact to the greater scientific community with a focus on recruiting and increasing diversity in data science with attendees that are not traditionally represented in STEM fields. (January 30, 2023)

Bill Ong Hing

Bill Ong Hing, professor and director of the immigration and deportation defense clinic in the School of Law, was awarded $160,000 from Sonoma County Secure Families Collaborative in January. This funding will extend efforts supporting legal representation of immigrants who live in Sonoma County for continued removal of defense actions. (January 3, 2023)

Dr. Marie-Claude Couture

Dr. Marie-Claude Couture, School of Nursing and Health Professions has received a $432,136 grant from the National Institute of Health: National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism with Dr. Erin Grinshteyn, the Associate Dean from the School of Nursing and Health Professions. This is an NIH R15 grant for research entitled “Determining the casual pathways of social and environmental predictors of high-risk alcohol drinking among college students.” Instead of using study designs and methods that are more vulnerable to bias, Dr. Couture and Dr. Grinshteyn aim to characterize the activity spaces of college students; examine the direct associations between the environment and social contexts and high-risk alcohol drinking among college students. (April 15, 2022)

Dr. Annette Regan

Dr. Annette Regan, School of Nursing and Health Professions, has received a $366,573 grant from the National Institutes of Health with Dr. Marie-Claude Couture in the School of Nursing and Health Professions and Co-Investigators at Boston University. This is an NIH R21 grant for research entitled, Evaluating Teen-Parent Dynamic in Adolescent COVID-19 Vaccine Acceptance and Uptake. The funding for this innovative research will provide important evidence to better understand adolescent vaccine decision-making and support the future interventions for improving COVID-19 uptake. Through an innovative approach to data collection and novel application of an existing statistical framework, over the next two years, the team will i) validate a measurement tool for monitoring COVID-19 vaccine hesitancy in adolescents and their parents, ii) identify how hesitancy correlates between adolescents and their parents and iii) evaluate how adolescent and parental vaccine hesitancy interacts in the decision to vaccinate against COVID-19. (August 15, 2022)

Adam Purdy

Adam Purdy, Environmental Science, School of Arts and Sciences, has received a $51,243 grant from Jet Propulsion Laboratory (JPL) via prime contracts between JPL and NASA (National Aeronautics and Space Administration). This award is supports ECOSTRESS, a recent NASA remote‐sensing mission to map evapotranspiration globally. USF Principal Investigator (PI) Adam Purdy supported the initial ECOSTRESS ground validation of science applications for this freely available dataset. Since its launch, the ECOSTRESS science team has made great advancements to the data products deliverables. With this new grant, PI Purdy will now be able support the ECOSTRESS science team by validating newly available datasets, provide key feedback for future thermal observing satellite missions, and create open-source codes to ease the use ECOSTRESS observations for new science and applications.

Annette Regan

Annette Regan, School of Nursing and Health Professions, has received a $1,277,429 grant from the National Institutes of Health with Co-Investigators at UCLA, Baylor College of Medicine and University of Melbourne, Australia. This is an NIH RO1 grant for research entitled, Uptake, Safety, and Effectiveness of COVID-19 Vaccines during Pregnancy. The funding will support one of the largest cohort studies to date in the area of the safety and effectiveness of COVID-19 vaccination during pregnancy over the next three years by combining information from electronic medical records, insurance claims data and Medicaid data. The research will be integral to support informed vaccine decision-making during pregnancy and documenting the health effects of maternal vaccination for infants. In addition, this evidence will aid informed decision and policy-making around COVID-19 vaccination for pregnant persons. (April 7, 2022)

Angela Banks

Angela Banks, School of Nursing and Health Professions, has received a $384,000 grant from the Office of State Health Planning and Development. The University of San Francisco Song Brown RN Program strives to increase education opportunities for ethnic minorities, such as Hispanic/Latinos, underrepresented in the nursing field. This grant supports USF’s partnership with Immaculate Conception Academy to identify potential Hispanic/Latino nursing students, and the training and retention activities of the nursing program." (April 5, 2022)

Bill Ong Hing

Bill Ong Hing, School of Law, has been awarded $160,000 from Sonoma County Secure Families Collaborative. This is an extension to the Vital Immigrant Defense Advocacy and Services ("VIDAS") grant. Funding from this will continue supporting legal representation of immigrants who live in Sonoma County for continued removal of defense actions.

Bill Ong Hing

Bill Ong Hing, School of Law, was given a $313,369 subaward from the Central American Resource Center of Northern California as part of the San Francisco Immigrant Legal Defense Collaborative. Funding from this award will support legal representation of unaccompanied children, families, and individuals with cases in San Francisco’s Immigration Court." (November 3, 2021)

Bill Ong Hing

Bill Ong Hing, School of Law, has been awarded $112,875 from The Legal Aid Society of San Mateo County (LASSMC) as part of the San Mateo County Removal Defense Collaborative. Funding from this award will support legal representation of immigrants who live in San Mateo County in removal defense actions, emergency legal assistance to individuals referred by San Mateo County’s Rapid Response Hotline, coordination of San Mateo County’s Rapid Response Network, and technical assistance to attorneys providing removal defense services." (October 5, 2021)

Janet Yang

Janet Yang, School of Arts & Sciences, has received a grant of $419,312 from National Institutes of Health for her project titled “Mechanisms of Substrate Selectivity and Transport by a Bacterial Methionine ABC Importer”. This proposal seeks to understand how prokaryotic ABC importers uptake nutrients that are crucial for survival, and these findings could provide new targets for treatment against bacterial pathogens. Towards this end, Dr. Yang will employ biochemical and biophysical methods to dissect how the E. coli MetNI transporter, an established model system, transports methionine from the periplasm to the cytoplasm. (September 20, 2021)

Joe Omega

Joe Omega, School of Education, has received a grant renewal of $277,375 from the Department of Education for the Talent Search Program. The purpose of the Talent Search Program is to identify qualified individuals from disadvantaged backgrounds with potential for education at the postsecondary level and encourage them to complete secondary school and undertake postsecondary education. (September 1, 2021)

Bill Ong Hing

Bill Ong Hing, School of Law, has received an additional grant of $15,500 from the Immigrant Legal Resource Center (ILRC). This grant is possible through funding from the Crankstart Foundation. These grant funds are being awarded to offer relief and to support USF’s Immigration Programs’ capacity to help overcome the challenges involved in working during the COVID-19 shelter in place order. (August 13, 2021)

Bill Ong Hing

Bill Ong Hing, School of Law, has received a continuation grant of $260,000 from the Immigrant Legal Resource Center (ILRC). This grant is possible through funding from the Crankstart Foundation. These grant funds are being awarded to serve immigrants in select Bay Area counties who are at risk of deportation. The project will cover the counties of Alameda, Contra Costa, Marin, San Francisco, and/or San Mateo. (August 4, 2021)

Jeffery Paller

Jeffery Paller, School of Arts & Sciences, has received a $137,529 grant from the Peace Research Institute Oslo (PRIO). The primary objective of the grant is to identify how urban growth in Africa is affecting political and societal change. The grant aims at advancing the empirical measurement of Africa’s urban polities to catalyze new scholarship and support evidence-based policy, understanding how urban growth shapes political change in African cities and identifying how political change in cities affects broader socio-political change. (August 1, 2021)

Amalia Kokkinaki

Amalia Kokkinaki, Department of Environmental Sciences, has received a grant of $40,694 from the Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory. The grant aims to conduct research on a subtask of Task 4 of DOE's SMART project, which is a broad multi-agency project, entitled "Science-informed Machine Learning for Accelerating Real Time Decisions in Subsurface Applications (SMART)". The SMART-CS project aims to develop tools and methods that will assist decision making and operations related to CO2 storage in geologic formation for climate change mitigation. (July 15, 2021)

Angela Banks

Angela Banks, School of Nursing and Health Professions, has received a $192,000 grant from the Office of Statewide Health Planning and Development (OSHPD). The University of San Francisco Song Brown RN Program 2020 aims to increase education opportunities for individuals from disadvantaged backgrounds, including racial and ethnic minorities underrepresented among nurses. This Song-Brown Program grant will allow Dr. Banks to provide cohort participants with the following: pre-entry preparation, mentoring with retention activities, student financial support, and cultural competency. Dr. Banks has received this award for the fourth time in the last four years. (July 1, 2021)

Christian Thompson

Christian Thompson, School of Arts & Sciences, has received a grant of $44,434 from the On Lok Day Services (OLDS). The grant aims at working in collaboration with the OLDS on a citywide Health Promotion program offered to San Francisco seniors to enhance their well-being and health. (July 1, 2021)

Danfeng Koon

Danfeng Koon, School of Education, has been awarded $45,000 from The San Francisco Foundation. The purpose of the grant is to provide evaluation support for Youth Access to Opportunity (YAO) Fund for SFF and participating school sites in understanding the impact that YAO’s funding model has on improving school climate and achievement at three school sites over three years. (May 7, 2021)

William Riggs, Majid Dadgar, Longyuan Du and Shivani Shukla

William Riggs, Majid Dadgar, Longyuan Du, and Shivani Shukla, School of Management, have received a grant of $845,660 from the California Strategic Growth Council (SGC) through a collaboration with The City of Oakland. This grant aims at the development and implementation of neighborhood–level climate sustainability plans and projects that will reduce greenhouse gas emissions, foster public health and environmental benefits, and catalyze economic opportunity and shared prosperity within the East Oakland neighborhoods. The above-named faculty members will help the City of Oakland and its Partners in providing evaluation, technical assistance, and data analysis for implementation of the projects and transformative plans undertaken. (April 16, 2021)

Derick Brown

Derick Brown, Leo T. McCarthy Center, School of Arts & Sciences, has received an award of $50,000 from the Walter and Elise Haas Fund. This award is for the Equity Scholars Program: a collaboration between the University of Delaware’s Biden Institute, the University of San Francisco’s Leo T. McCarthy Center and the YMCA of San Francisco to reduce the achievement gap and prevent COVID-19 learning loss in under-resourced communities. The goal of this two-year pilot program is to bring together public service minded college students as trained Equity Scholars who will offer interactive virtual summer learning opportunities for children entering grades K-8. (April 15, 2021)

William Karney

William Karney, School of Arts & Sciences, received a grant amounting to $202,564 from the National Science Foundation (NSF). This award aims at conducting research with an intention to clarify heavy-atom tunneling in reactions of annulenes and other conjugated systems. The work promises to deepen the understanding of heavy-atom tunneling and to broaden the scope of reactions in which tunneling plays a major role. With Dr. Karney’s expertise in the computational elucidation of reaction mechanisms, the work addresses new problems in this area while training undergraduates in numerous aspects of chemical research. (April 9, 2021)

Judith L. Pace

Judith L. Pace, School of Education, has received an award of $9,500 from the Spencer Foundation based on a cross-national study, the first study to investigate both preparation for teaching controversial issues in university methods courses and preservice teachers’ efforts to teach issues in citizenship, history, and social studies classrooms. This grant aims at conducting webinars, podcasts, writings, a website, and social media to prepare educators at all levels in the U.S. and internationally for teaching controversy. (March 29, 2021)

Bill Ong Hing

Bill Ong Hing, School of Law, has been awarded $160,000 from Humanidad Therapy & Education Services as a part of Sonoma County Secure Families Collaborative. This is an extension to the Vital Immigrant Defense Advocacy and Services ("VIDAS") grant. Funding from this will continue supporting legal representation of immigrants who live in Sonoma County for continued removal of defense actions. (February 12, 2021)