Faculty and staff at Cal Poly received a record $32 million in grants in the 2015-16 academic year — up 25 percent from the year before, according to a news release.
The grants contributed to more than $250,000 in tuition, fees and scholarships for students, $650,000 in lab equipment; paid the wages of 58 Cal Poly Corp. employees and $1.8 million in wages to more than 800 student researchers.
In addition, faculty and staff received five patents in the past school year: for an efficient car air-conditioning system (Patrick Lemieux); an in-wall air filtration system (Carmen Trudell and student Natacha Schnider); CubeSats, small satellites that launch as secondary payloads (Jordi Puig-Suari and Austin Williams); software that allows the blind to convert touch input into an audio response (Dennis Fantin and Art MacCarley); and an environmentally safe packaging design (Jay Singh and former student Evan Cernokus).
“Five patents in a year is on the high end, but we usually get about three to five every year,” said Dean Wendt, dean of research in the Office of Research and Economic Development.
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Cal Poly also honored four individuals who, over the course of their careers at the university, have secured a combined $50 million in grant funding.
Stuart Styles and Charles Burt of the Irrigation Training and Research Center have each procured more than $20 million in external funding while Sam Blakeslee, director of the Institute for Advanced Technology and Public Policy, and Trevor Cardinal, director of the Regenerative Medicine Program, each obtained $5 million. Christine Robertson of the Advanced Technology and Public Policy institute and Suzanne Phelan of the Center for Solutions through Research in Diet and Exercise were also honored.