UNM Los Alamos

The Bobbye Straight Faculty Initiative Award: Frequently Asked Questions

The Bobbye Straight Faculty Initiative Award: Frequently Asked Questions

What's in it for me?

Cash or release time. Which do you want? Nobody's ever asked for a combination of cash and time but you could probably convince the committee to try it.

Am I eligible?

You are eligible to apply if:

  • you've taught a lifetime grand total of 2 or more semesters (including this one) at UNM-LA
  • you're eligible to teach there again.

If you're still not sure about your eligibility, ask at the Office of Instruction or apply anyway. Applications will be screened for eligibility before they are sent to the committee.

I've already won once. Am I eligible?

Yes, as long as you qualify under Q2. Your won/lost record isn't relevant.

Sometimes the committee has extra money and can fund more than one award in a single year. If you submit two applications in such a year, and if both those applications are winners, well then, good for you.

I'm not a core faculty member. Am I eligible?

Yes, as long as you qualify under Q2. Your pay grade isn't relevant.

I teach in ABE or ESL. Am I eligible?

Yes, as long as you qualify under Q2. Your department isn't relevant.

But what is the committee really looking for?

  • The committee looks for original, outside-your-usual-box projects that will make you a better teacher just because you tried to do them.
    • projects that you wouldn't otherwise get to do or try or make;
    • projects that stretch you, fire your enthusiasm, enrich your command of your subject matter, maybe even expose you to the risk of failure;
  • The committee looks for concrete products or measurable results.
  • The committee looks for submissions that explain how your idea addresses the spirit of the Award.

In the past the committee has funded, among other projects,

  • A new way to teach an old course
  • A musical composition and its performance
  • A teacher-student course manual where none existed before
  • Research resulting in a submission for consideration to a professional publication

If I take cash, what can I spend the money on?

Your application should convince the committee that the project as a whole is worth the Award. What you spend the money on is up to you. If you decide to apply for a team project, the team leader is responsible for dividing the loot.

When are applications due?

The deadline date for each academic year is 5:00 p.m. on the first Friday in April. Applications that come in after this day/time will be put into the next year's pool. Applications are available online and may be submitted to the Office of Instruction in hard or digital copy at any time.

There are 4 relevant Award documents on the web site; it's probably to your benefit to read them all before you write your proposal and submit your application.

Award recipients are announced at the Commencement Ceremony in May.

Complete information, application forms, and a list of prior recipients and completed projects can be found at: http://losalamos.unm.edu/instruction/faculty-initiative-award/index.html

You didn't answer my question. Now what?

Email your question to:

The President of the Faculty Assembly: tbeach@unm.edu
The Office of Instruction: katerim@unm.edu