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Intramural Grants Fuel Faculty Research

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Thanks to an intramural grant from Cal State Fullerton, Tara Suwinyattichaiporn, assistant professor of human communication studies, will be spending time in a virtual world this summer.

She will be studying race communications using a virtual reality game that allows players to interact with a person of a particular race. The game informs them if they commit a microaggression or interact in a way that is considered racist.

At the same time, Armando Garza, assistant professor of elementary and bilingual education, will be taking a hard look at the reality faced by many bilingual (Spanish/English) students — stigma based on their bilingualism. His intramural grant allows him to explore the experiences of these students and discuss how the role of educators is crucial to understanding, respecting and honoring diverse students.

Suwinyattichaiporn and Garza are only two of the 35 CSUF faculty members across all eight colleges who were awarded 2019-20 junior/senior research grants from CSUF’s Office of Research and Sponsored Projects.

“This annual grant program encourages faculty to develop and grow their research and creative activity programs and be competitive when applying for external grant programs,” explains Chris Liu, associate vice president for research. “As a kind of ‘seed’ grant award, the junior/senior program also has played a critical role in involving students in learning — one of the best experiences for student retention and on-time graduation.”

The junior/senior awards are announced each May. This year, grantees were offered the choice of release time or a maximum of $5,000 in funding.

See the full list of 2019-20 grant recipients on the Office of Research and Sponsored Projects website.