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Friday, September 12, 2008

A&T awarded get Engineering Research Center from NSF


North Carolina A&T State University has been awarded an Engineering Research Center (ERC) from the National Science Foundation (NSF). The ERC is considered the “crown jewel” among NSF awards. In the past 25 years, only about 30 ERCs have been funded by NSF.

This year, over 143 proposals were submitted from universities for NSF’s most prestigious award. Of those, only 34 were selected for full proposal submission. A&T’s selection marked the first time ever an HBCU had been invited to submit. Of the 34 full submissions, eight were chosen for sight visits. Five of those eight were selected to receive the award. A&T has made history by becoming the first HBCU ever to receive an ERC.

The ERC at A&T will conduct research in the areas of biomedical engineering and nano bio applications and is in partnership with the Universities of Cincinnati and Pittsburgh. It also has a global technical partner in Germany’s Hannover School of Medicine and a global cultural and outreach partner—the Indian Institute of Technology, Madras, India. California State University at Los Angeles will serve as an outreach partner in the USA. The funding is approved for 10 years with an amount of almost 20 million dollars over the first 5 years, with the possibility of extension for 10 years.

NC A&T will also start a new department of bioengineering in conjunction with this ERC. The department will offer BS, Masters and PhD degrees in bioengineering.

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