Boldly Baldwin word mark

The Office of Sponsored Programs and Undergraduate Research

Students with a professor in the labThe Office of Sponsored Programs and Undergraduate Research (SPUR) works with Mary Baldwin College faculty, staff, and students to enhance academic excellence through research, scholarship, and creative activity. Our goals are to assist faculty to develop their scholarly and creative interests and to encourage a climate in which students are actively engaged in the pursuit of new knowledge.

SPUR helps to encourage and recognize undergraduate research, scholarship, and creative activity (URSC, pronounced “you risk”) and promote the senior project as an important curricular component of the Mary Baldwin College Advantage. We work with the Committee on Research, Scholarship, and Creative Activity (CRSC, “see risk”) and other college offices to coordinate the Capstone Festival of senior projects and to offer the annual Freshman-Sophomore Library-Based Research Award. We seek funding for and administer the Research Initiative Fund, which provides small grants to faculty for pilot projects that have the potential to lead to long-term, sustainable programs that involve students in URSC.

SPUR is also the primary administrative office that supports efforts to enhance the academic program through faculty-initiated, externally funded grants (sponsored programs). We distribute information about potential funding sources and advise faculty in developing project ideas, constructing budgets, preparing proposals, negotiating grants and contracts, and reporting the results of their work. The office also oversees Federal compliance and project monitoring requirements for animal care and use; human subjects in research; and research ethics.

Because SPUR serves as the coordinating office for sponsored programs, we must review all proposals from MBC faculty to an external funding agency before submission if they:

  • involve use of the resources of the College (including personnel, offices, and equipment); and/or
  • provide compensation in the form of release time or extra service pay; and/or
  • require in-kind contributions; and/or
  • are to be administered by the College as a condition of the proposed grant.

SPUR exists to support, not direct, scholarly activity and subscribes to the principles of academic freedom outlined in the Faculty Handbook.

Contact Information

SPUR is located in 226 Rose Terrace, at the corner of Academy Street and North Market Street, behind Wenger Hall.

  • Lydia J. Petersson
    Director of Sponsored Programs and Undergraduate Research
    ext. 7235, lpeterss@mbc.edu
  • Members of the ad hoc Committee for the Development of Research, Scholarship and Creative Activity (CRSC) are also key participants in program efforts.