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Xiaochen Li awarded the Academic Professional Development Research Funding Award of $1,000 by USC Office of the Provost

November 19, 2013 —

Oct, 2013 –-

Xiaochen Li, a Masters student directed by Professor Steven Nutt, was awarded the USC Academic Professional Development Research Funding by USC Office of the Provost. This award carries with it a monetary research funding of $1,000 and is granted to recipient’s research institute USC M.C.Gill Composites Center, directed by Dr. Steven Nutt, professor and chairman of department of Chemical Engineering and Materials Science.

Dr. Sarah Pratt (USC Vice Provost for Graduate Programs), Dr. Richard Andalon (Associate Dean & Director for Graduate School), and Dr. Jesse Watson (Associate Director for Graduate Programs), presented the award in a reception at the new University Club.

In the photo (from left to right): Dr. Bonnie Lund, Xiaochen Li, and Dr. Jesse Watson from USC Provost Office and Graduate Programs.

The USC Diversity & APD program is a research training, professional development, faculty mentorship, and competitive funding program supported by the USC Office of the Provost and academic departments university-wide. USC is committed to the holistic development of doctoral students through programs that enhance their professional competencies and better equip them for academic career paths. The Office of the Provost provides the doctoral award recipients the following training sessions to enhance their academic and professional skillsets and better prepare for their future professional career:


Ø  “Library Research Resources & Search Strategies”: Workshops on how to use the latest technology and library search resources to access data and literature, managing research references and organizing bibliographies using Zotero, RefWorks, and Endnote.

Ø  “Grant & Fellowship”: Workshops on faculty scholarly life, grant funding opportunities and how to write effective proposals to help secure fellowship funding, supplemental funds to support current research, and seek money to fund new research projects.

Ø  “Conference, Journal & Academic Proposal Writing”: Workshops on differences between scholarly and professional writing, tips and strategies for editing written work and constructing persuasive arguments, conducting the literature review for a research project, overview of the publication process

Ø  “Effective Research Oral Communication Skill”: Workshops on strategies for communicating effectively in scholarly and professional environments.

Ø  “Multiple Presentation Approaches”: Workshops on organizing research ideas for conferences, panels, and classroom presentations.


Xiaochen Li was admitted to the program by the Office of the Provost and based on all trainings completed, her final research presentation on “Chemical Engineering Application on Proxima Based Composites” was among the best presentations and was awarded the APD Research Funding Award of $1,000.