Funds will enhance student success, support research initiatives, and improve campus infrastructure.
Thursday, June 27, 2024

The University of Iowa has awarded P3 funding for fiscal year 2025 to several projects that will enhance student success, support research, and improve campus infrastructure. Up to $15 million from the UI Strategic Initiatives Fund will be distributed to aid the implementation of two projects and provide ongoing support for educational infrastructure and other initiatives that promote the strategic plan.

"The P3 program provides a tremendous opportunity to support projects that will have a lasting impact on our students, faculty, staff, and the broader university community," says Kevin Kregel, executive vice president and provost. "By investing in these initiatives, we are able to support innovative solutions that align with our strategic plan."

The P3 Board of Directors endorsed the following allocation of funds at its June meeting:

  • $2.2 million for two projects selected from a campuswide call for proposals.
  • $5 million for enhancing educational infrastructure on campus.
  • $7.8 million reserved for the implementation of additional strategic plan initiatives throughout the year.

Projects approved for FY 2025

A campuswide call for proposals in September 2023 drew 13 preliminary applications. Three projects were invited by the Strategic Plan Action and Resource Committee (SPARC) to submit full proposals. SPARC reviewed the full proposals in March 2024 and recommended two projects to President Barbara Wilson, totaling $2.2 million in funding.

Growing Iowa into a Leader in Airborne and Ground-based Earth Science Measurement Capability
$1,270,700 over three years; led by Matthew McGill, professor of chemical and biochemical engineering in the College of Engineering.

This initiative leverages the unique capabilities of the Operator Performance Laboratory and its research aircraft, along with airborne and ground-based sensors, to study the effects of climate change in the Midwest. By using these advanced measurement techniques, the project will gather detailed atmospheric and environmental data crucial for understanding climate effects in the region. The project will create innovative, interdisciplinary research and educational opportunities across campus, providing a foundation for training the next generation of Earth scientists while enhancing Iowa’s competitiveness for grant funding from agencies such as NASA, the National Institutes of Health, and the National Science Foundation.

The Iowa Health Data Resource (IHDR): Extending the Impact
$902,890 for one year; led by Boyd Knosp, associate dean for IT in the Carver College of Medicine.

The IHDR, which was established by a previous P3 award, supports research efforts on campus by creating accessible health-related datasets and developing tools that protect confidentiality while providing access to health information for research purposes. This multi-collegiate collaboration leverages Iowa’s strength in fostering a collaborative and integrated culture. The FY 2025 project provides funding to complete the initiative. 

Enhancing educational infrastructure

The $5 million allocated for educational infrastructure will have a transformational impact on academic programming and student success at Iowa. This funding includes $2 million for additional classroom improvements and $3 million for the continuation of the project to relocate the Department of Dance to a remodeled Performing Arts Annex (former art museum).

Strategic Plan Implementation Fund

The remaining $7.8 million for FY 2025 will be used to fund additional strategic plan initiatives throughout the year. Of this amount, $4 million will support the High Impact Hiring Initiative, aimed at recruiting and retaining top faculty. Another $1.4 million will be allocated to two projects focused on enhancing Iowa’s artificial intelligence infrastructure and expertise. 

This flexible fund allows the Strategic Plan Action and Resource Committee to address emerging needs and opportunities as they arise. SPARC members develop and evaluate funding requests, which are then reviewed and approved by the provost and president. Approved projects are submitted quarterly to the P3 Board of Directors for endorsement.

Nine proposals received funding via the SPARC Strategic Plan Implementation Fund in FY 2024, the first year the fund was in place. A list of funded projects and additional details about the SPARC Strategic Plan Implementation Fund are available on the strategic plan website.

Background on the P3 Program

The P3 Program provides resources for strategic investment into the UI’s core missions of teaching, research, and scholarship. In March 2020, nearly $1 billion in funding from the university’s 50-year partnership with ENGIE North America and Meridiam to operate the utility system was placed in an endowment. Earnings from the endowment allow the university to invest about $15 million per fiscal year in support of the UI’s strategic plan priorities.

For more information on the P3 Program and funded projects, visit the strategic plan website