NEH Awards SUU Grants Amounting to Nearly $200,000

Published: September 05, 2019 | Author: Savannah Byers | Read Time: 3 minutes

picture of the southern utah museum of artThis year, Southern Utah University was the only institution in Utah to receive not one, but two grants from the National Endowment for the Humanities (NEH). These two grants, totaling nearly $200,000, will support Utah Project Archaeology and the Southern Utah Museum of Art (SUMA).  

The first NEH grant was awarded to SUMA under Museum Director and Curator Jessica Farling for $3,196. This money will be used to purchase a specialized storage cabinet to house around 1,900 pieces of SUMA’s permanent collection. 

"SUMA is thrilled to have received this grant to help further our mission of being an educational and cultural resource for the students of SUU and our communities across the region," said Farling. "This funding will be used to purchase new archival cabinets and equipment to preserve objects in our permanent collection, particularly three-dimensional Native American works by Marie Poveka Martinez and Allan Houser."

Within an hour of receiving the first grant, SUU was notified that they had earned a second NEH grant for Utah Project Archaeology, under Coordinator Samantha Kirkley. This second grant, amounting to $169,445, will be used to plan and host workshops for K-12 educators on the ancient Fremont culture of the American Southwest. 

“I speak for the many wonderful people involved in this project,” said Kirkley. “We are thrilled and honored to be selected for this NEH Landmarks grant. We believe in giving young people experiences that promote understanding, stewardship, and enjoyment of our shared natural and cultural resources.” 

SUU and NEH first collaborated in April of 2019 at a grant writing workshop organized by Dr. Jean Boreen, dean of SUU’s College of Humanities and Social Sciences. The grant writing workshop was organized in part by Jodi Graham, executive director of Utah Humanities, and Utah Representative Chris Stewart's office. Along with a presentation by Congressman Stewart, the workshop covered how best to prepare a proposal and move forward in writing a grant.

“We are very excited about the NEH Landmark grant awarded to Samantha Kirkley because of the wonderful opportunity it provides us to share all of the wonders of southern Utah with teachers from around the country,” Dean Boreen said. “To give credit where it's due, Sam put in this proposal before the workshop, and landed it all on her own.”

Along with individual applications, SUU’s Sponsored Programs, Agreements, Research, and Contracts (SPARC) office, most commonly referred to as “the grants office,” works to increase both the quality and quantity of grantsmanship at SUU.

“These awards speak to the enduring efforts of our dedicated team to elevate SUU to this level of national success,” said Sylvia Bradshaw, SPARC director. “Karen Wilson, Suzette Bulloch, and Bill O’Neill are among the best of the best in research administration and I am thrilled to celebrate their integral part of this success.”

In 2019, NEH awarded $29 million to 215 humanities projects across the United States. Other universities such as Yale, Stanford, Cambridge, and Cornell also received funding for various projects.

“SUU has a strong tradition of bringing the liberal arts to southern Utah and it is great to see it grow,” said Congressman Stewart. “These humanities grants will help maintain the relationship between the university and the community. I am impressed by the hard work university faculty put into these grants.” 

To learn more visit the Southern Utah Museum of Art website or the Utah Project Archaeology website. The workshops funded by this grant will be held in the summer of 2020.

Tags: College of Humanities and Social Sciences Southern Utah Museum of Art

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