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Christine Morales receives coveted Research Corporation award

RELEASED: Aug. 17, 2011

Dr. Christine Morales
Dr. Christine Morales

EAU CLAIRE — University of Wisconsin-Eau Claire faculty member Dr. Christine Morales, assistant professor of chemistry, is the only person in Wisconsin to receive a single-investigator Cottrell College Science Award in the most recent awards announced by the Research Corporation for Science Advancement.

Morales' $35,000 award is the 22nd single-investigator Cottrell College Science Award received by UW-Eau Claire faculty members since 1996, according to the Research Corporation's website.

The award will support Morales' research during the next two years on metal-hydrogen bonding, which may be relevant to the design of new materials used for solid-state hydrogen storage. Two undergraduate students will be involved throughout the project.

"Student researchers will help carry out this new investigation, using relevant software and analysis tools," Morales said.

The computational modeling project will reinforce concepts from the undergraduate curriculum and expose students to modern computational methods and research skills.

"One of UW-Eau Claire’s hallmarks is faculty-mentored undergraduate research and scholarly and creative activity," said Dr. Karen Havholm, assistant vice chancellor for research and sponsored programs. "Morales has embraced and advanced this tradition."

Research Corporation awards are designed to support new faculty in the physical sciences at predominantly undergraduate institutions.

"These awards provide seed funding for research, help early-career faculty establish research programs and encourage undergraduate students to pursue research interests," said Dr. James M. Gentile, president and CEO of Research Corporation. "All of these activities are essential to our national future as scientific innovators."

Morales joined the UW-Eau Claire chemistry department in 2009. She completed her bachelor’s degree in chemistry and mathematics at Carleton College in Northfield, Minn., and her doctorate in chemistry at UW-Madison.

Faculty and academic staff who are interested in external funding are invited to contact UW-Eau Claire's Office of Research and Sponsored Programs at orsp@uwec.edu or 715-836-3405.

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HJS/JP/AH

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