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Stimulating Research

Campus 2009 Federal Stimulus Funding Totals $3.75 Million

January 26, 2010

Cal State Fullerton garnered approximately $3.75 million in federal stimulus funding last year, including $424,540 received in the last quarter.

Designed to restart the economy, federal stimulus funding provides monies for the sciences, engineering, research and infrastructure. More limited funding is available for education, social sciences and the arts.

Three different programs received ARRA funding over the past four months.

Cancer Screening

The largest of the most recent federal funding grants ($210,448) is directed at a program to identify and address barriers to screening for cancer prevention, early detection and treatment services among Pacific Islanders. One particularly underserved population is Tongan Americans in Southern California.

According to Sora Park Tanjasiri, professor of health science and director of the university’s Center for Cancer Disparities Research, there were 5,085 Tongans in this area. In interviews with 172 women, only 10 had sought screening and only six women utilized assistance to navigate the healthcare system.

The funding received will establish an infrastructure for patient navigation services, increase the number of patients receiving screening services, and increase the proportion of eligible patients on health insurance. Such a navigation program will be the first ever for Pacific Islanders in the area, and will become a model for the development of future efforts to increase access for ethnic minorities to cancer screening and treatment services. For more information, visit:

What Triggers Volcanos

Volcanologist Brandon Browne, assistant professor of geological sciences, received $150,000 to investigate the role of magma mixing as a potential trigger for the 2006 eruption of Augustine Volcano in Alaska. Funding will support two undergraduate thesis projects and one graduate thesis project for two years, as well as two weeks of field work on the volcano itself this summer. Browne will be accompanied in his field work by a local K-12 earth science teacher who will utilize the research experience to develop new volcano-based curriculum in their earth science class. For more information, visit:

Minority Access to Research Careers

The final project approved in this period is $64,092 awarded to Amybeth Cohen, professor of biological science and director of the Minority Access to Research Careers program. Funding will provide support of the MARC U-Star program, which recruits and prepares promising minority science students for entry and success in doctoral level biomedical programs. The ARRA funding awarded to the MARC Scholars program will accelerate the pace of science, stimulate economic growth, and create and/or retain jobs by providing research training of the undergraduate participants. Read more about the program on the 50th Anniversary Titan Pride website.

For information on previous federal stimulus funded projects, visit:

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