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Wheeler Named Interim Director of SC EPSCOR/IDEA program

Dr. John Wheeler, Director of Furman University’s Office of Integrative Research in the Sciences and Professor of Chemistry, has been named Interim Director of the South Carolina EPSCoR/IDeA program.

Dr. John Wheeler
Dr. John Wheeler

Wheeler will continue his duties at Furman while carrying out his interim position at EPSCoR, which is based in Columbia.

The mission of the EPSCoR (Experimental Program to Stimulate Competitive Research) and IDeA (Institutional Development Award) programs is to assist the National Science Foundation, National Institutes of Health and other agencies in strengthening research and education in science and engineering throughout the United States, with emphasis on providing support to geographic locations that have traditionally received low levels of federal research funds.

In his new role, Wheeler will assume interim responsibilities for directing existing statewide programs and developing new competitive applications for support across South Carolina through the NSF-EPSCoR, DOE-EPSCoR and NIH-IDeA mechanisms.

This appointment is made at the direction of the South Carolina EPSCoR/IDeA State Committee.

South Carolina is one of 28 states eligible to compete for EPSCoR/IDeA funding, and the South Carolina EPSCoR/IDeA program has historically leveraged both federal and state support to build research infrastructure; infuse research into education; provide science and technology opportunities for diverse groups of institutions, students, faculty, and disciplines; and increase collaboration among key stakeholders of the state’s science and technology enterprise.

Wheeler has served as the Principal Investigator and Project Director of Furman’s own IDeA and EPSCoR programs since 2005, resulting in more than $6 million in funding that has contributed to new faculty hires, supporting faculty and student research and infrastructure, and contributing to science education and outreach.

In March of this year, he received the Governor’s Award for Excellence in Scientific Research at a Predominantly Undergraduate Institution in recognition of his laboratory accomplishments and efforts to support science research and education across South Carolina.

Wheeler received Furman’s Meritorious Advising Award in 2013, and, in 2010, the South Carolina Commission on Higher Education awarded him a Commendation for Excellence in Service Learning.

Wheeler is a member of the American Chemical Society, the Council on Undergraduate Research and is a graduate of the Riley Diversity Leadership Initiative. A graduate of Georgetown College in Kentucky, he received his Ph.D. in analytical chemistry from the University of Cincinnati.

For more information, contact Furman’s News and Media Relations office at 864-294-3107.

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