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Frequently Asked Questions

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Process for requesting up to $10,000 for GSS Concept Development

We expect that these funds will be used to further the development of an existing or new GSS concept for submission for the Phase III competition (we will announce this competition in early 2018).  Examples of use of these funds include costs associated with liaising with external programs that you would like to emulate, meetings, curriculum development, proposal development, etc.

For the request please answer the following questions and be succinct:

1.  How much (up to $10,000) are you requesting?

2.  What will you use this money for?

3.  Please justify the need for these funds.

Send your request to Dr. Janet B. Webster,, (540) 230-9547.  Please do not hesitate to contact her if you have any questions. 

It is expected that concepts for Phase III will be chosen in a similar manner to how they were chosen in Phase II.  The Phase II process consisted of GSS DA Stakeholders individually ranking each concept, with the entire group then coming to consensus on their overall ranking.  The stakeholders ranked the concepts into three tiers—highest priority, medium priority, and lowest priority—based on how well the concept embraced the academic and research enterprise and how well it bridged disciplines spanning the sciences and humanities to develop a signature strength within the GSS DA.  The stakeholders then submitted their tiered ranking to the Deans most closely related to the DA (Paul Winistorfer (CNRE); Alan Grant (CALS); Cyril Clarke (VMCVM); and Sally Morton (COS)) who then deliberated among themselves to select concepts that best matched their collective strategic plans and near-term hiring agendas.  

It is expected that there will be about 6 concepts total.  Two concepts (Rural Health and Freshwater Systems) were chosen during Phase II.  A third concept dealing with infectious disease will be developed with the help of the Phase I cluster hires that will arrive on campus starting in fall semester, 2017.  We intend to run a similar “request for concepts” process for Phase III though V. 

Yes.  Please contact Dr. Janet Webster (; 540-231-9547) or one of the other Fralin staff members (see contact page) to get help with ideas that you have.