Collaborative Research Project

The Biology of Physical Activity Laboratory and the Center for Translational Research in Aging and Longevity collaborate on a research project.

Pictured from the bottom are Dr. Nicolaas Deutz, Jorge Grandos , Gabriella Ten Have, Nick Walker (undergraduate), Victor Garcia (undergraduate) and Heather Vellers  (former doctoral student.)




Research Dean’s Corner

I was impressed last spring when Dean Alexander committed significant new resources to expand college-level R&D services in response to a faculty-driven initiative requesting more support for your research efforts.   It is now my privilege to serve as your Associate Dean for Research and Development (R&D) as of July 1; I am thoroughly enjoying the challenge of organizing an expanded office while we explore the most efficient means of supporting your research.  I am very grateful for the broad expertise of Windy Hollis Turner, Assistant Director, and Jesús Palomo, our Research Development Officer, who have served in their current capacities for 18 and four years, respectively.

Under the able guidance of Clayton Holle, we have integrated three more business staff into our office:  Mary Seifert, Wyatt Buchanan, and Pam Parks.  We have already heard back from several PI’s who were grateful to have access to more than one business staffer at crunch times.   There have been a few bumps in the road as we negotiate transitioning many services from your department business office to our College R&D office; be assured we are working diligently to smooth those out.  I will appreciate hearing your feedback on individual issues as they arise.

New personnel arriving in October

We are excited to welcome Dr. Sharmila Pathikonda as our second Research Development Officer (as of October 3) and Ms. Amy Hinnant as our Outreach Coordinator, who starts on October 17.  I encourage you to take a moment to review their bios below because they are both bringing with them a lot of expertise to these positions. We hope to introduce you personally to these two new R&D staff members at upcoming department or division meetings to explain how they can support your proposal submissions and assist with your research activities.

Friendly reminder on minimum GAR stipends

Former Dean Doug Palmer established $1100 and $1750 as the minimum monthly stipend rates, effective 9/1/2014, for all CEHD Graduate Assistants at masters and doctoral levels, respectively.   Effective 9/26/2016, all out-going external grant/contract proposal budgets must include this monthly stipend rate for me to sign off on that proposal during routing.

How can we support your grant submission or project execution activities?

We started Town Hall meetings over the summer and will continue with more of these to gain faculty input on your priorities for services from our office.  Contact me or Windy Hollis Turner at any time with your ideas and suggestions (, ).

I would also like to remind you that the Catapult seed grant program is currently accepting applications and this competition will close at 5:00 pm CST on October 24.

Apply for Catapult Grant

We hope to publish these brief newsletters each month, so stay tuned for news relevant to promoting your research success.  I wish for everyone a productive semester!


R&D Organizational Chart



Pre-award Update

SRS updates and news:

Our negotiator for SRS is now Michelle Strickland – as always, our research office will assist in the coordination and management of your contract negotiations and support you until the award has been completely set up.

SRS is experiencing an overwhelming amount of work from our college – perfect for us! But it also means slower response times on your award setup. Let the CEHD R&D Office help you.

2017 NIH Grant Writing Workshop

Application deadline is October 5, 2016

Develop a submission-ready proposal for the National Institutes of Health by June 2017.

PESCA Proposal Writing Workshop

VPR will be hosting another PESCA proposal writing workshop Oct. 11, 2016, from 2:00 to 4:00 pm in Room 103 of Henderson Hall in the center of campus.

Full proposals are due Monday, October 31, 2016, by 11:59 p.m. (CDT).

Limited Submission Proposals

Many funding agencies issue requests for proposals that limit the number of applications they will accept from an institution. The manner in which sponsors limit applications vary, but usually consists of one or more of the following: restricting the number of proposals which may be submitted; limiting the type of institutions that can apply; limiting PIs by stage of career.

Texas A&M University, working in partnership with The Texas A&M University System research agencies, has established a process to identify limited submission opportunities and internally select applicants to submit full proposals in response to a particular program. (see current opportunities)

Data Management Plans

Don’t forget that TAMU has resources available for you as you develop your data management plan. (see resources)

Post-award Update

The CEHD R&D post-award business staff is up and running and is your source for research related purchasing, travel, and payroll transactions.  It has been a busy few months with Fall/Spring preparations, and we are off to a good start.  If there are any concerns regarding the fiscal year 2017 payroll, please contact the appropriate post-award representative (listed below).

The R&D post-award team:

Clayton Holle, Business Administrator (EPSY) – R&D Post-Award Manager

Wyatt Buchanan, Business Coordinator (TLAC)

Pamela Parks, Business Coordinator (HLKN)

Mary Seifert, Business Coordinator (EAHR/EPSY)

Post-Award Research Tip – Account Balance:

  1. Log into Maestro at
  2. From the Maestro home screen, select “Account List.”
  3. Select account number from list
  4. Select “Account Balance” on the left of the screen
  5. Select the “Finance” radio button under Category on the top right

The above will give the most accurate balance in line with the FAMIS and Canopy financial system.

For additional account information or an estimated current balance that includes pending transactions such as travel and credit card purchases, please contact the appropriate post-award representative (listed above).

New Hires

Sharmila Pathikonda


Dr. Sharmila Pathikonda blends a unique background of substantial research experience in an academic environment, with experience in proposal development, research development and faculty outreach. She takes great pleasure in enabling research by identifying opportunities and helping researchers prepare applications for funding.

She enjoys interacting with faculty, and understanding their research program goals so that she may be better equipped to provide the best possible solutions to them. Dr. Pathikonda received her B.Sc (Microbiology, Chemistry, and Botany) and M.Sc (Biochemistry) from Bangalore University, India, and then received her Ph.D. in Evolutionary and Environmental Biology from the University of Louisiana – Lafayette in 2009. Since then she has held research and administrative positions at the University of Wyoming, Arizona State University, and Texas A&M University.

Dr. Pathikonda has a keen personal interest in advancing the research and education and looks forward to working with faculty in the CEHD.



Amy Jurica Hinnant


Growing up in Caldwell, Texas, Amy has worked in the field of education for 25 years.  Having taught in the public schools in Cypress –Fairbanks ISD for nine years and then in various private schools in the Houston area, Amy also worked in school administration for nine years.  She is certified as a classroom teacher, a principal and as a director of early childhood centers.

Amy is a member of the Texas A&M Class of ’91 and serves as one of the Class Agents.  Additionally, she is a member of the Junior League, Houston Livestock Show and Rodeo, Burleson County Historical Commission and the Houston Aggie Moms.

As Outreach Coordinator, Amy’s duties include working to support the faculty researchers in the College of Education and Human Development. By developing and maintaining relationships with research stakeholders and participants, and coordinating with the CEHD Communications team to publicize research results, assist with recruiting study participants and maintain communication between the College Research and Development Office and faculty researchers.