Faculty Legacy Fund

Promoting Faculty Success

Our Belief

It is the belief of CSU Dominguez Hills Emeritus Faculty Association that the foundation of all great universities lies with a strong faculty base maintained through a rigorous system of academic peer review and tenure. The Faculty Legacy Fund has been created to help the next generation of tenured and tenure-track faculty at Dominguez Hills meet those demanding standards.

Investing in Faculty

Administered by the Emeritus Faculty Association, the Faculty Legacy Fund awards provide financial assistance for current faculty members to encourage and support their professional development in areas such as teaching, research, conference presentations, lab work, and other scholarly and creative endeavors. Awards are open to tenure-track and tenured faculty at Dominguez Hills. Preference is given to non-tenured, tenure-track faculty.

Application will reopen December 2023

Drs. Michael Spagna, Provost and Vice President for Academic Affairs and Sheree M. Schrager, Dean, Graduate Studies and Research are pleased to announce the CSU Dominguez Hills Emeritus Faculty Association (EFA) is continuing to offer Faculty Legacy Fund Awards, an on-campus professional development grant program for current tenure-track and tenured faculty members. This award program has been created to provide financial assistance to encourage and support professional development in the areas of teaching, research and creative activity. Awards are open to all tenure-track and tenured faculty, although preference is given to non-tenured, tenure-track faculty. Further preference will be given to applications that benefit students as researchers, research assistants, or students in the classroom.

Faculty Legacy Fund Recipients

The EFA expects to be able to award grants for a maximum of $6,000 each. Requests may be submitted for any amount up to that maximum. The grants are for use during the 2023-2024 academic year, but awardees may begin to access their awards in the summer of 2023.

The deadline for submitting proposals was Friday, February 17, 2023. Announcement of the recipients of the awards will be made during the Spring 2023 semester. The awardees will be honored at the EFA Spring Zoom Meeting in late May.

We strongly encourage you to apply. If you have any questions about the Faculty Legacy Fund Awards, feel free to contact John Wilkins

Faculty Legacy Award Funding
Academic YearAwardeesResearch
2019-2020Parveen Chhetri, 
Earth Science

Understanding severe drought events using tree rings in Taylor Creek Watershed, Lake Tahoe Basin, California

Droughts are frequent weather events in California. Tree-rings can provide many sources of information about past climates and drought, and using tree-rings, we can investigate past climates on an annual timescale. In this project, undergraduate students will collect tree-ring cores and disc samples to reconstruct drought in Taylor Creek Watershed. The students will develop research skills that will prepare them for the Earth Science and Geography graduate program. Furthermore, Californian water managers can use the outcomes of this research for managing water crises and forest fire. Understanding the reoccurrence interval of past drought and fire risk will help inform disaster management.
2019-2020Sonal Singhal,

Why are there more of some types of species than others?: Linking population processes to broad-scale patterns.

Whether walking through urban neighborhoods or going on nature hikes, the diversity of the natural world surrounds us. Our lab researches the origin and maintenance of this species diversity.. One pattern that particularly fascinates us is that diversity is imbalanced across types of organisms and geographic regions. For example, when we think of mammals, we first think of bears, lions, and elephants. But, fifty percent of mammals are either rodents or bats. The proposed research aims to understand the possible evolutionary causes for this disparity, and in doing so, provide undergraduate students with firsthand research experiences.

2019-2020Mara Lee Grayson,

Building Racial Literacy into First-Year Composition: Evaluating A Faculty Development Program toward Equitable Writing Instruction

Racial literacy has been shown to be well-suited to First-Year Composition (FYC) curricula (Grayson, 2017, 2018; Sealey-Ruiz, 2013; Winans, 2010). This research project will explore a faculty development program intended to train FYC instructors to develop antiracist FYC curricula employing established, evidence-based racial literacy and critical writing pedagogies. By researching the efficacy of faculty development toward antiracist curricula, this project has the potential to improve student experience and outcomes in FYC, successful completion of general education courses, and undergraduate retention.

Alexis McCurn, Assistant Professor, Sociology Department - Untenured

Exploring Street-Based Sexual Harassment Among Poor African American Women

This project examines how black women living in distressed urban neighborhoods negotiate sexual harassment in public space. For numerous inner-city residents walking along local streets is customary and includes street-based encounters and interactions with others. For many this means routine experiences with a range of negative public interactions. Impoverished communities in Los Angeles’ South Bay will be the primary site of participant observation and interviews. I will explore how women experience, understand, and manage street harassment while negotiating poor urban space and paying special attention to how intersectionality complicates hostile, gender-specific encounters. (Phase 2; Phase 1 completed 2016-2017)


Nancy Deng, Associate Professor, Info Systems & Op Management Dept. - Untenured

Understanding First-Year Experience and Digital Skills of Generation Z at CSUDH

Generation Z is the population segment born between 1995 and 2010. Living in a world of smartphones and free Wi-Fi, this generation is assumed to be digital technology savvy. However, this assumption of universal digital equality may not hold, given members’ diverse social and economic status. Digital equality is essential for Generation Z to succeed in today’s digitalized, networked society. So digital equality or inequality? Collaborating with University Advisement Center at CSU Dominguez Hills, I intend to study the digital skills and competence of our first-year students and propose digital competence-enhancing strategies to help them thrive in college and beyond. (Initial survey data analysis on data sample collected as well as a paper submitted based on the analysis completed prior to this application)


Kathryn Theiss – Biology

How will plants evolve in a changing climate?

Predicting how plant species will evolve in the face of global climate change is one of the most important and challenging fields in current botanical research. Climate change affects the timing of plant flowering as well as activity of pollinators, which could lead to increased rates of self-fertilization, decreasing genetic diversity and therefore adaptive potential. The overarching question that drives my research is How do genetically-controlled breeding systems affect a species' ability to evolve in a changing climate? I combine field and molecular research to answer this question using evening primroses (Oenothera; Onagraceae).



Bin Tang – Computer Science

Energy-Efficient File replication in Data-Intensive Cloud Data Centers

Cloud data centers are the backbone of the Internet economy, providing numerous services such as search engines(Google), social networks(Facebook), and video streaming(Netflix). Many cloud applications are data intensive, processing large amount of data. Data replication, which brings data files closer to the applications, is an effective strategy to reduce data access latencies and bandwidth consumption, thus saving energy in data centers. I am working with both graduate and undergraduate students in my lab to design energy-efficient data replication algorithms. With algorithmic and mathematical rigor as well as real-world applicability, this project will provide an invaluable research experience for our students.


Andrea Johnson – History  

Dominguez and the 1910 Air Meet

To complete research on a documentary on the 1910 Los Angeles International Aviation Meet, Prof. Andrea Johnson proposes to bring to light one of the seminal events in Los Angeles aviation history. The goal of "Dominguez and the 1910 Air Meet" is to complete a factual and focused film on an event central to the history of aviation in the nation, Los Angeles and the South Bay. The project will fund Prof. Andrea Johnson's research, travel, editing, filming assistance to the Airmeet committee and interviews to bring the production home not only to CSUDH, but also to Los Angeles and Aviation historians. In addition Prof. Johnson will work to bring the Air Meet home to CSUDH students and generally challenges them to visualize the connections between local, national and their own history.

2015-2016Hannah Nguyen – Human ServicesCulturally Sensitive Mental Health Service Delivery for Asian American Immigrants: A Qualitative Study of Mental Health Providers’ Perspectives
 Karin E. Kram – BiologyRole of sspA in Long-Term Survival of Bacteria

Ana Pitchon – Sociology

Award Rescinded- Left the University
 Jacqueline Padilla-Gamino – BiologyImpacts of climate change in marine organisms of Southern California   
2013-2014Tara Victor – PsychologyMindfulness, Frontal Systems and Emotion Regulation
2012-2013Ann Soon Choi – IDS/PACEImpact of Elimination of Adult Day Care  Award Rescinded-Unused
  Susan Needham – Anthropology Summer Field Studies/Research in Cambodia
  Doris Ressl – Dance and TheatreCertification in Therapeutic Dance 
2011-2012 Dana Belu – PhilosophyPhenomenology, Feminism and Reproductive Technology
  John Carvalho – BiologyMolecular Mechanism Underlying Citrate Utilization Differences Between Enterococcus   Faecalis and Enterococcus Faecium
  Chris Monty – History Political Clientelism and the Early Stalin Regime
  Helen Oesterheld – EnglishAll Female Communities: The Promise and Problem of Women in Retreat 
2010-2011John Carvalho – BiologyAntibiogram and MSA Analysis of the Enteroccocci 
  Vivian Price – IDS/Labor StudiesRoots of Tradeswomen Activism in Seattle 
 Doris Ressl – Theatre and DanceDances on the Lakewalk 
  Tara Victor – PsychologyExamining Ethnocultural Bias on Cognitive Measures in a College Population
 2009-2010Kenneth Rodriguez – ChemistryAngle Studies of Metal Meshes Used for Sensing And Spectroscopy of Actin
 Sohaila Shakib – SociologyGender, Sport and the Popularity Hierarchy among Youth
 2008-2009Dennis Corbin – Social WorkFirst Generation Minority Students in Graduate Education
 Susan Einbinder – Social WorkSocial Capital in Los Angeles
 Matt Mutchler – SociologySexual Health Communication
 Doris Ressl – Theatre and DanceSignature Moves   
 2007-2008 Ashish Sinha – Earth SciencesTesting the Sea Surface Temperatures-Drought Variability Linkage in the SW US Using Stalagmites From Sequoia National Park
 Laura Talamonte – HistoryWomen’s Agency and the Development of Citizenship In Pre-Revolutionary and Revolutionary France
 Erika Verba – HistoryThe Life and Work of Chilean Artist Violeta Parra:  A Biography Proposal
 Kara Zugman – Sociology This Bridge Called Zapatismo: Building Alternative Political Cultures in Mexico City, Los Angeles and Beyond