University of Maine awarded $700K to host 2021 National NSF EPSCoR Conference in Portland, Maine
The National Science Foundation (NSF) has awarded the University of Maine more than $700,000 to host the 27th NSF EPSCoR National Conference in Portland, Maine next year.
The national EPSCoR (Established Program to Stimulate Competitive Research) conference is proposed for November 2021. Its theme, “Translating Stakeholder Needs Into Impactful Research Outcomes,” will engage audiences from different sectors, disciplines and jurisdictions, including state legislators, congressional representatives, federal employees, jurisdictional project directors and administrators, as well as members of EPSCoR state committees, scientists, junior faculty members, and students.
EPSCoR aims to increase research capacity, strengthen STEM education, and advance science and engineering in jurisdictions that have historically received limited funding from NSF. The 27th NSF EPSCoR National Conference will support this overall mission.
“We are very pleased that the University of Maine is hosting this important and very significant event designed to bring together our stakeholders across all 28 jurisdictions,” says Loretta Moore, who serves as the section head of NSF EPSCoR. “The selected theme is important in facilitating our vision of advanced research competitiveness, and this meeting will create tailored opportunities for all participants to engage.”
The conference will not only provide the necessary tools and inspiration for EPSCoR communities to create national change, but also encourage EPSCoR jurisdictions to find new and innovative ways to impact their home states and territories, says Shane Moeykens, director of Maine EPSCoR, which is based at the University of Maine.
Workshops and information sessions will focus on broadening community participation in STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics), economic development, commercialization, best practices for virtual delivery of curricular content to underrepresented communities, and more.
Students from EPSCoR jurisdictions will present their research, and research outcomes achieved through community science engagement will be showcased. This conference will also offer opportunities to explore new ideas, build collaborations, and gain new skills, which will result in increased research and education capacity in EPSCoR jurisdictions across the nation, including Maine.
“We are delighted to be hosting this event, and appreciate NSF’s confidence in selecting us to serve in this leadership role for the 27th NSF EPSCoR National Conference,” says Kody Varahramyan, UMaine Vice President of Research and Dean of the Graduate School.