Awards & More

Issue Date: 
October 18, 2010

G. Kelley Fitzgerald, a professor of physical therapy in Pitt’s School of Health and Rehabilitation Sciences, was awarded a $1.41 million, four-year grant from the federal Agency for Health Research and Quality. Fitzgerald will serve as the principal investigator on the multicenter trial that will examine the clinical and cost-effectiveness of using booster sessions in the delivery of exercise therapy and supplementing exercise therapy with manual therapy techniques in people with knee osteoarthritis.

The U.S. Department of Education awarded a four-year $1.18 million grant to the Pitt School of Health and Rehabilitation Sciences’ Department of Communication Science and Disorders. The grant will fund outstanding students recruited into the department’s programs and will focus their training on the clinical service of local high-risk children living in poverty.

James G. Greeno, a visiting professor in Pitt’s School of Education and the Margaret Jacks Professor of Education Emeritus at Stanford University, and Gaea Leinhardt, emeritus professor in Pitt’s School of Education and scientist emeritus in Pitt’s Learning Research and Development Center—members of a team of researchers along with Carnegie Mellon University faculty—recently received Science magazine’s Science Prize for Online Resources in Education (SPORE) for their ChemCollective Web site. The prize acknowledges superior projects from around the world that offer freely available online improvements of science education. The ChemCollective Web site ( was developed to provide chemistry instructors and students an alternative to textbook learning through the use of virtual labs and scenario-based learning activities. In addition, Greeno and Leinhardt served as coauthors of an essay on the ChemCollective program that was published in the April 30 issue of Science magazine.

Robert Weyant, an associate dean of Public Health and Outreach and professor and chair of the Department of Dental Public Health/Information Management in Pitt’s School of Dental Medicine, was appointed to an Institute of Medicine committee charged with reviewing the current oral health care system for the U.S. population. The committee, called An Oral Health Initiative, will review and make recommendations on ways to improve access to dental care.

The National Science Foundation awarded $877,074 to Tia-Lynn Ashman, a professor of plant evolutionary ecology in Pitt’s Department of Biological Sciences. The money will fund Ashman’s project “Collaborative Research: Initiation of a Sex-Determining Chromosome—Insights From Sexually Dimorphic Strawberries.”

Margo B. Holm, a professor and director of postprofessional education in the Pitt School of Health and Rehabilitation Sciences’ Department of Occupational Therapy, was awarded a Fulbright Scholar grant. Holm is conducting research and lecturing at the University of Jordan in Amman, Jordan, this fall. Specifically, she is helping to develop a rehabilitation science educational and research program.