Faculty, staff receive grants from Office of Diversity and Inclusion


Augusta University’s Office of Diversity and Inclusion offered several new programs this year to advance diversity, equity and inclusion across the AU community. One of their new initiatives awarded faculty and staff grants for research.

Dr. Trent Kays is the recipient of the Office of Diversity and Inclusion Research Grant. Kays is an assistant professor of English and world languages in the Pamplin College of Arts, Humanities, and Social Sciences. He was awarded $2,250 to support his research investigating how and in what ways college composition programs across the United States understand and implement concepts of diversity, equity and inclusion.

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Dr. Trent Kays

“I am immensely honored that the Office of Diversity and Inclusion found my proposed project worthy of support,” he said. “It is always exhilarating to be supported by one’s peers, and I will do my colleagues proud in using the grant for my spring 2021 research project.”

The ODI grant-funded research project investigates how and in what ways diversity, equity and inclusion concepts are focused and implemented in college composition programs around the United States, Kays said.

“As the university’s director of college composition, I know that DEI concepts are critical to contemporary writing curriculum, and, in investigating such concepts at other universities, I hope to better understand how those concepts can manifest at Augusta University and in the broader discipline of rhetoric and writing studies,” he said. “This research project is a pilot study, and the research I collect over the spring 2021 semester will be included in a scholarly article on DEI and writing program administration. The ODI grant will fund two student assistants to help with data collection, analysis, and writing.”

Dr. E. Nicole Meyer is the recipient of the Office of Diversity and Inclusion’s Faculty Development Small Grant. Meyer is a professor of French and women’s and gender studies in the Pamplin College of Arts, Humanities, and Social Sciences. She was awarded $3,050 to support the completion of her book examining diversity, equity and inclusion from scholars in the field of French and Francophone studies.

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Dr. E. Nicole Meyer

“I am very grateful to the DEI Research Grant, which helped in producing the manuscript for Teaching Diversity and Inclusion: Examples from a French-Speaking Classroom, co-edited by E. Nicole Meyer and Eilene Hoft-March (Routledge, 2021),” she said. “Through awarding us with the DEI Research Grant, the ODI recognizes the value of the work I have been doing these past years, which have resulted in several past publications, including my previous Routledge volume, as well as several forthcoming articles.”

Melissa Thompson received the $500 Staff Development Small Grant. Thompson is a library assistant in the Department of Libraries. This grant supported her membership to the American Library Association.

Charmaine James also received the $500 Staff Development Small Grant. She is the senior admissions counselor in the Medical College of Georgia. This grant supported her membership to the National Association of Advisors for the Health Professions.

Applications for 2021 are expected to open in the summer. Learn more about the Office of Diversity and Inclusion.

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Written by
Raysean Ricks

Raysean Ricks is a writer for Communications & Marketing at Augusta University. Contact him to schedule an interview on this topic or with one of our experts at 706-721-6144 or email him at rricks@augusta.edu.

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Written by Raysean Ricks

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