Nord Grants

The Nord Family Foundation is a successor to a charitable trust established in 1952 by the entrepreneur and industrialist Walter G. Nord. Mr. Nord and his family believed that it was both responsible and prudent for a business to invest in the community it served.  Two of Mr. Nord’s children, Evan and Eric Nord, were early donors to UCITE, and they sponsored the Nord Grant program to promote faculty innovation in teaching.

Nord Grants are one-year awards which support UCITE’s goal of empowering people to learn through the development of innovative faculty teaching and research projects that directly benefit student learning. Projects may be created by individual faculty members or in collaboration with others, including members of educational and cultural institutions external to CWRU.

Successful proposals typically include at least one of the following approaches:

  • the development of innovative teaching methods or instructional tools;
  • technological innovations to assist with student learning; and/or
  • the creation or revision of courses.

Use of grant funding within these proposals may include, but is not limited to:

  • innovative application of technology to deepen student learning;
  • inter- and trans-disciplinary collaborations to create student learning opportunities beyond the classroom environment;
  • presentation at a conference associated with teaching, education, or student learning;
  • visiting scholars who will address issues related to teaching and learning; and
  • creation of research communities consisting of CWRU faculty and students (undergraduate or graduate), focusing on a specific issue related to teaching and learning.


  • Nord Grants have no fixed financial parameters. Project support is commensurate with provided justification. Priority is given to faculty who have not previously been awarded a Nord Grant.
  • Grant funding is provided for one-year, with the possibility of extension.
  • Awards are given twice yearly, with starting dates of January 1 and July 1.


Full-time CWRU faculty who intend to maintain university employment for a substantial period of time are eligible to apply for a Nord Grant. Visiting faculty, SAGES Fellows, and graduate students are not typically eligible unless their activities can be demonstrated to benefit CWRU students after the grant recipient has left the university.

Application Procedure

Fellowship applications consist of two parts: an online form and a PDF submission.   The application window is open until December 9, 2019.

Part 1: online form

Complete an online form that provides UCITE with necessary contact information.

Part 2: PDF submission

Please use the following template, and compile the supplementary documents into one PDF.   Please submit to

  • Project Description: Offer a brief statement of the purpose, rationale, and scope of the project, and the reason a grant must be used instead of or in addition to department/school funds. This portion should include the components listed below.
    • Student Impact: a detailed explanation of how this project will impact CWRU student learning
    • Professional Impact: a description of how this project will help you continue to develop as a professional educator
    • Metrics and Data collection: outcome measurement objectives and data collection plan
    • Department Contact: the contact information for your department administrator/grant or business manager
  • Budget (one page).  An example for the budget page is given here.
  • Letter of Support (one page)
    • Include a letter from your department chair, indicating their initial review of your proposal and budget. The chair should comment on your proposed project timeline, the possibility of departmental or outside financial support, and the overall practicality of the proposal. The chair should also indicate support for the budget, including the total funding amount.
  • Curriculum Vitae (one page)

Additional Pages (as needed).  Letters of support are requested, as appropriate, from university resources. These types of letters are necessary to acknowledge collaborative support of your proposal from other units within the university. For example, if you are planning a new interdisciplinary course or research project, you might include a letter from the other department(s) involved, demonstrating support for your proposal. Include these additional signed letters of support in an appendix after the curriculum vitae.


Proposals (including budget) will be publicly accessible. Accepting an award means the proposer agrees, unless explicitly requested otherwise. 


Budgets must conform with the rules of the proposer's department and school, as well as those of the university. Grant applicants must check with appropriate entities to be sure their items meet such criteria before submitting the budget. UCITE approves a proposal on the basis of its appropriateness. UCITE approval does not imply conformance to university rules (such as the need to obtain IRB approval); the proposal author is responsible for checking and complying with such rules. The budget should list the titles and amounts of any prior Nord Grants received by the requester. Support for the budget, including the total funding amount, should be included in the letter from the department chair (or other appropriate supervisory authority in schools where there is not a department structure).

FYI: Public Disclosure 

  • Proposals (including budget) will be publicly accessible. Accepting an award means the proposer agrees, unless explicitly requested otherwise.
  • Nord Grant recipients will collaborate with UCITE in publicizing their project to the CWRU community through our website and other appropriate venues.


  • Within two months after the award period ends, the grant recipient must file a report with UCITE (approximately 300 words) that contains project accomplishments, including impact on student learning. The report will be published in UCITE’s annual report.
  • Recipients must also file a brief summary of budget expenditures, to be kept on file.


At the end of each academic year, Nord Grant recipients will give a short public presentation at a UCITE Innovation Forum.

Publicity and Acknowledgements

  • Any resulting publications and presentations should acknowledge the support of UCITE. For example, “The author of this publication received financial support from a CWRU UCITE Nord Grant for the research, authorship, and/or publication of this article.”
    • Please submit electronic copies of any publications.
  • Nord Grant recipients may be invited to record brief comments about their project for the UCITE website or other university publicity purposes.

Nord Grants Awarded

The following faculty were awarded grants to fund the listed proposals. 

Date Investigator Department Award Proposal
January, 2017 Lauren Calandruccio Psychological Sciences and Communication Sciences 2,000  Using the Immersive Hearing Loss and Prosthesis Simulator (i-HeLPS) to Improve Learning in Communication Sciences
January, 2017 Vincent Graziano Math 4,000  Developing Software to Increase Student Engagement in Mathematics
January, 2017 James Overholser


3,240  Teaching Psychological Topics Through Classroom Discussion, Games and Activities
January, 2017 Alp Sehirlioglu

Electrical Engineering and Computer Science

6,000 Introduction of Holographic Teaching in Materials Science 
January, 2017 Rekha Srinivasan Chemistry 2,600 

Novel Hierarchical approach to flipped class-room involving graduate and undergraduate teaching assistants with peer-peer learning-Phase II

January, 2017 Horst von Recum Biomedical Engineering $5,200

Evaluating the effect of academic technology on student learning outcomes

Date Investigator Department Award Proposal
January, 2016 Lauren Calandruccio Psychological Sciences and Communication Sciences $920  Enhancing Classroom Education for Undergraduate Students in Communication Sciences
January, 2016 Vincent Graziano Mathematics and Applied Statistics $2,118  Streamlining Lectures for Undergraduate Students in Mathematics
January, 2016 Paul Iversen Classics $8,200  Experiential Learning in Field Archaeology and Epigraphy
January, 2016 Amy Przeworski, Marc Buchner Psychological Sciences $6,940  Comparing Augmented Reality vs Virtual Reality in Psychological Sciences Research 
January, 2016 David Preston Neurology $4,025 Neuroimaging in Neurology 
January, 2016 Silvia Saccon Mathematics and Applied Statistics $1115

 Implementing Inquiry-Orientated Curricula for Advanced Mathematics

Date Investigator Department Award Proposal
January, 2015 Megan Holmes and Zoe Breen Wood MSASS $5000

Evaluating the effect of academic technology on student learning outcomes

January, 2015 Cheryl Killion Nursing $1415 A‌ttend a seminar on teaching using the case method
January, 2015 Scott Simpson Anatomy $7380 Developing a 3D atlas of human and primate skeletal materials
Date Investigator Department Award Proposal
January, 2014 Chris Fietkiewicz Electrical Engineering and Computer Science $3500

Multiplayer Quiz System for Self-Assessment

January, 2014 Masahiro Heima Dentistry $3950 Behavioral Science Course in Dental Fear and Anxiety
January, 2014 Daniel Lacks Chemical Engineering $4000 International Engineering Entrepreneurship Course Offering in Developing Countries
July, 2014 Corbin Covault Physics $5040 Towards A Flipped Classroom for Introductory Physics
July, 2014 David Hammack History $3000 U.S. History for International Students
July, 2014 Mingguo Hong Electrical Engineering and Computer Science $4070 Software for Power Systems Analysis
July, 2014 Barbara Kuemerle Biology $5000 A Longitudinal Study to Assess LearningRetention
July, 2014 Rekha Srinivasan Chemistry $900 Active Learning in Organic Chemistry
July, 2014 Nicole Steinmetz Biomedical Engineering $5000 Nanoman II
Date Investigator Department Award Proposal
January, 2013 Nicole Steinmetz Biomedical Engineering $5000 Nanoman
January, 2013 Jing Li Electrical Engineering and Computer Science $3223 App Development for iOS
January, 2013 Lisa Koops Music $4000 Center in Music and Teaching
January, 2013 Susan Case Political Science $4000 Outcome Learning Assessment, SAGES
January, 2013 Tatiana Zilotina Modern Languages and Literature $1800 Russian for Heritage Speakers
January, 2013 Jeffrey Ullom Theater $2000 Musical Theater, SAGES
July, 2013 John Fredieu Anatomy $5450 3-D Modeling of Anatomical Structures
July, 2013 Noelle Giuffrida Art History $2681 Issues in the Arts of China: Chinese Contemporary Art
July, 2013 Charles Tannenbaum Molecular Medicine $4000 Initiation of a Laboratory Component for Molecular Methods and Tools
January, 2013 Todd Oakley Cognitive Science $3425 Autism, Intersubjectivity & Language
January, 2013 Peter Zimmerman International Health, Genetics and Biology $5000 Whole Genome Sequencing and Bioinformatic Analyses to Undergraduate Students
Date Investigator Department Award Proposal
January, 2012 Kelly McMann Political Science $2000 Understanding Democratization through Original Data Analysis
January, 2012 Peter Yang Modern Languages and Literature $5500 Independent Study in Chinese (CHIN 399)
July, 2012 T. J. McCallum Psychological Sciences $1944.50 Aging and Functional Change
July, 2012 Michael Pollino Psychological Sciences $3507 Experiential Learning of Structural Systems for Undergraduate Engineering Students
Date Investigator Department Award Proposal
January, 2011 Linda Ehrlich Modern Languages and Literature $2493 Topics in World Literature (WLIT) 390: ShadowPlay (An Interdisciplinary course)
January, 2011 John Fredieu Anatomy $5520 Specimen Conservation for Anatomy 491
January, 2011 Dan Lacks Chemical Engineering $2500 ENGR 225B: "Thermodynamics, Fluid Dynamics, Heat and Mass Transfer (in Botswana)"
January, 2011 Jenifer Neils Art History $1850 Parthenon Frieze Video Project
July, 2011 Celeste Alfes Nursing $2500 Leadership Development Program for Simulation Educators
July, 2011 Ricardo Apostol Classics $5669 Greece Classics Seminar, American School of Classical Studies
July, 2011 Patrizia Bonaventura Psychology $2012 Instrumental Measurements in Speech Science
July, 2011 Mary Grimm English $1325 ENGL 376 Studies in Genre: Urban Fantasy
July, 2011 Dan Lacks Chemical Engineering $2000 Collaboration with the University of Dakar, Senegal
Date Investigator Department Award Proposal
July, 2010 Darin Croft Anatomy $2030 Creating a guide to skull identification of the main mammal groups
July, 2010 Paul Iversen Classics $5440 Experiential learning course on Landscape Archaeology and Epigraphy
July, 2010 Carol Savrin Nursing $2099 Study of clicker effectiveness in nursing school courses
July, 2010 Robert Spadoni English $1250 Materials to develop a course and text on early horror films
July, 2010 Gary Wnek Biomedical Engineering $5000 Support for course in biomedical design