August 1, 2012

John Sharp, chancellor of The Texas A&M University System, announced today that he will ask the Board of Regents for the creation of the Chancellor’s Research Initiative (CRI), which will provide one-time funds to Texas A&M University and Prairie View A&M University for the recruitment and hiring of faculty members.

“We have some of the best universities in the country, and we want to attract exceptional faculty members who will have a transformative impact upon the academic and research missions of Texas A&M and Prairie View A&M,” said Sharp. “I envision that these talented candidates will also attract additional research dollars for their work and our universities.”

The CRI will provide $33 million each year for FY 2013 and FY 2014, and $34 million for FY 2015. The funding for the initiative will come from the annual Available University Fund (AUF) distribution. Sharp said that the A&M System was particularly interested in candidates who have a proven track record of success in developing and implementing large, multi-investigator, federally funded programs such as NSF Engineering Research Centers, NSF Materials Research Science & Engineering Centers, foundations that support the liberal arts, and other funding mechanisms of similar scope and scale.

In addition, candidates will be evaluated on their ability to augment federal funding with additional support from commercial and/or non-profit sources; alignment of their area of study with current/future national funding priorities and university strategic thrusts; and a track record of their trainees successfully obtaining federal funding.

As we continue to be challenged with doing more with less, it is important for us to find ways to attract world-class researchers without overtaxing our already lean budgets,” Sharp said. “The CRI seeks to find outstanding researchers who can not only produce amazing work, but also bring in some much needed funding to support that work.”

Earlier this year, Sharp made a $5 million commitment to the Institute of Advanced Study, led by Dr. John Junkins, a distinguished professor in Texas A&M’s Department of Aerospace Engineering. Its charge is to create a network of Faculty Fellows who will advance the intellectual climate and deepen the graduate experience at Texas A&M.

About the A&M System
The A&M System is one of the largest systems of higher education in the nation, with a budget of $3.3 billion. Through a statewide network of 11 universities, seven state agencies and a comprehensive health science center, the A&M System educates more than 120,000 students and makes more than 22 million additional educational contacts through service and outreach programs each year. Externally funded research expenditures exceed $780 million and help drive the state’s economy.

Contact: Steven B. Moore
(979) 458-6023