Blog Archives

Congressional Briefing Explores Groundbreaking Research on the Health of the Aging

On June 30, the National Institute on Aging (NIA) of the National Institutes of Health (NIH) in collaboration with Friends of the National Institute on Aging (FoNIA) hosted an educational briefing on Capitol Hill on “Advancing the health of an aging population: Groundbreaking Research Supported by the NIA.FoNIA is a broad-based coalition of aging, disease, research, and patient groups that supports the mission of the Institute; COSSA is a longstanding member. The briefing continues the series of annual FoNIA Congressional briefings designed to share the latest aging research with Congress and its staff. Presenters included NIA Director Richard Hodes; NIA Deputy Director Marie A. Bernard; Corey T. McMillan, University of Pennsylvania; and Peter M. Abadir, the Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine. (more…)

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Posted in Issue 14 (July 12), Update, Volume 35 (2016)

Funding Opportunity Announcements

  • NSF: Dear Colleague Letter: Change Makers (NSF-16-109)

NIH opportunities:  

  • NIH: Extramural Loan Repayment Program for Contraception and Infertility Research (LRP-CIR) (NOT-OD-16-115)
  • NIH: Extramural Loan Repayment Program for Clinical Researchers (LRP-CR) (NOT-OD-16-116)
  • NIH: Extramural Loan Repayment Program for Pediatric Research (LRP-PR) (NOT-OD-16-117)
  • NIH: Extramural Loan Repayment Program for Health Disparities Research (LRP-HDR) (NOT-OD-16-118)
  • NIH: Extramural Clinical Research Loan Repayment Program for Individuals from Disadvantaged Backgrounds (LRP-IDB) (NOT-OD-16-119)
  • NIMH: Advanced Laboratories for Accelerating the Reach and Impact of Treatments for Youth and Adults with Mental Illness (ALACRITY) Research Centers (P50) (PAR-16-354)
  • NIMHD/NCI: Social Epigenomics Research Focused on Minority Health and Health Disparities (R01) (PAR-16-355), (R21) (PAR-16-356)
  • NIH: Notice of NIH/BD2K Participation in the Joint NSF/NIH Initiative on Quantitative
  • NIGMS: Research Initiative for Scientific Enhancement (RISE) (R25) (PAR-16-361)
  • NIA: Program Project Applications (P01) (PAR-16-358)
  • NIA: Revision and Resubmission Program Project Applications (P01) (PAR-16-359)
  • NIEHS: Transition to Independent Environmental Health Research (TIEHR) Career Transition Award (K01) (PAR-16-360)

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Posted in Issue 14 (July 12), Update, Volume 35 (2016)

AERA Briefing Examines the Supreme Court Decision in Fisher v. UT Austin

On June 28, the American Educational Research Association (AERA) held a briefing, After Fisher: What the Supreme Court’s Ruling Means for Students, Colleges, and the Country, to discuss the recent U.S. Supreme Court decision in Fisher v. University of Texas, Austin (Fisher II). A distinguished panel of civil rights and education research experts focused on the impact of the Fisher II ruling and its implications for ensuring quality education for all students. The Court’s June 23 ruling reaffirmed “the compelling governmental interest in promoting student-body diversity in higher education and upheld the constitutionality of the University’s race-conscious admissions policy under the narrow tailoring requirement of strict scrutiny.” According to Angelo Ancheta, Counsel of Record for AERA et al. Amicus Curiae Brief, the Court’s ruling is “fully supported by the scientific literature on diversity.” This includes research on the educational benefits of diversity, the harms of racial isolation, critical mass, intra-racial diversity, and research refuting claims that race-conscious admissions policies harm minority students.

In addition to Ancheta, panelists included Gary Orfield, University of California, Los Angeles; Theodore Shaw, University of North Carolina School of Law at Chapel Hill; Liliana Garces, Pennsylvania State University; and Sheila Flores, New York University. Felice Levine, AERA executive director, moderated the session. The panelists addressed the constitutional findings of the ruling and its implication for civil rights, how the ruling comports with research on benefits of diversity in education, research as an asset and continuing opportunities, implications of Texas processes to other institutions and states, and opportunities and priorities for future research.

Orfield emphasized that the decision suggests “future opportunities and priorities for rigorous research.” He stressed the need for a shift in the research focus from “developing basic justification for campus diversity to better understand how campuses can achieve rich diversity in their admissions, recruitment, and student aid systems and to better understand how to achieve diversity across campus and across academic fields.” Shaw noted that “Fisher II is a victory for proponents of diversity and affirmative action.” Moreover, “diversity and affirmative action remain alive in higher education, repeatedly sustained and even strengthened by the Supreme Court.”

Flores emphasized that as educators and stakeholders there are key messages that need emphasis including “demography, data quality, and the continuing need for equity policies, in addition to effective diversity policies.” Garces added that as postsecondary institutions strive to meet the guidelines articulated in Fisher II, they can pull from the extensive body of evidence “documenting whether race-neutral admissions policies are workable and available, and whether they suffice to further their mission-driven interest in the educational benefits of diversity.”

A broadcast and additional information is available on AERA’s website.

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Posted in Issue 14 (July 12), Update, Volume 35 (2016)

Events Calendar

A list of COSSA members’ annual meetings and other events can be found on the COSSA website. COSSA members who have an upcoming event they would like to see listed in the Events Calendar and on our website should send an email to

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Posted in Issue 14 (July 12), Update, Volume 35 (2016)


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