Proposal for top floor of ATRB goes to regents

The unfinished fifth floor of the new Advanced Teaching and Research Building would become home to the interdisciplinary Nanovaccine Institute in a proposal going to the state Board of Regents on Dec. 6. The board will meet via telephone, with the meeting based at the board office in Urbandale. The meeting agenda and an audio livestream are on the board website.

Iowa State will seek permission to begin planning for a headquarters and state-of-the-art research space for the institute, a consortium of 70-plus scientists at 21 universities, health care companies and national laboratories. Anson Marston Distinguished Professor in chemical and biological engineering Balaji Narasimhan serves as director. The project budget is estimated at up to $6.5 million, to be covered by university funds and private gifts.

The first four floors of the new facilty, located at the northwest corner of Pammel Drive and Stange Road, are scheduled to open next semester.

Professional development requests

Iowa State will submit its request for 43 faculty professional development assignments in the fiscal year that begins July 1, 2018. This compares with 42 in the current year and a recent five-year average of 38. The proposed FY19 group includes 29 males and 14 females, and their plans vary in length from a semester (28), full academic year (12), something in between (two) to a full calendar year (one).

All Iowa State faculty employed at least half-time, regardless of length of service, may apply for a PDA, typically used to pursue intensive research or scholarship, or prepare publications. Fifty-two Iowa State faculty, out of an eligible 1,865, applied for an assignment. Priority may go to tenured faculty over non tenure-eligible, and to faculty who haven't received a PDA in the past five years. The average length of service for the proposed faculty recipients is 11.8 years.

Dietetics graduate degree

The full board will be asked to approve a Master of Professional Practice in Dietetics (MPPD), a non-thesis, online graduate degree in the food science and human nutrition department. By 2024, a master's degree will be required to take the national credentialing exam. Demand for the MPPD program is high among current graduate certificate students. The board's academic and student affairs committee reviewed the proposal in October.

Capital projects

These Iowa State projects will be presented to both the property and facilities committee and the full board next week:

  • ISU Dining proposes to renovate and reconfigure two-thirds of the Hub interior to reduce congestion. Alternatives for the Hub were part of a broader food service study last spring. The plan would move the coffee venue to the north end of the building (phase 1), separating it from the grill area. The southeast corner of the building, now used primarily for vending, would be converted to storage. The existing seating areas will be renovated. ISU Dining will pay for the estimated $2.4 million project. The proposed timeline calls for bidding the project in the spring, with the coffee venue ready by the start of fall semester and the grill area several months later.
  • The university proposes to gut and reconfigure 14 restrooms across all five levels of the northwest section (1961 addition) of Parks Library. The renovations would provide accessibility compliance and add a family restroom to each floor. The proposed $2.3 million cost would be covered by university funds.
  • The athletics department proposes to expand and reconstruct the parking lots immediately north and south of Hilton Coliseum (C1 and C2) and the roads on the east and west sides of the building. The project includes additional sidewalks, new lighting, improved accessibility and a dedicated parking area for the visiting team bus. A new event-only north driveway to Lincoln Way is being considered. The estimated $3.8 million cost would be covered by athletics department funds.

Approved by the property and facilities committee in October, these ISU requests also will go to the full board for approval next week: A revised budget for the cancer therapy addition to the small animal hospital at the College of Veterinary Medicine, officially creating the Center for Multiphase Flow Research and Education in the College of Engineering, a revised budget for the window replacement project at Wallace-Wilson residence halls, and a two-summer $4.8 million project to replace all the windows and blinds in Friley residence hall.