Office of Research & Economic Development
Supporting research, scholarship and creative activity


Georgia Southern University to Participate in International Fraud Awareness Week Nov. 15-21

Fraud-650x488Georgia Southern University will participate in International Fraud Awareness Week – Nov. 15-21. It is part of an effort by the University System of Georgia to promote an ethical culture and to bring awareness to the common and uncommon instances of fraud or ethical violations within the campus community.

“Fraud, waste and abuse directly impact our stewardship responsibilities, and the well-being of individuals within our campus community,” said Jean Bartels, Ph.D., R.N., interim University president.

Throughout the week, the campus community will receive video messages from President Bartels, and such offices as Public Safety, Human Resources, Finance, Information Technology and Academics on stewardship, prevention, integrity, responsibility, inspiration and trust.

“Reporting fraud and ethical violations is everyone’s responsibility. The cost of fraud, waste, abuse, and unethical activity is not only financial, but also affects employee morale and the University’s reputation,” said Jana Briley, chief audit officer and director of Audit and Advisory Services. “As good stewards, we must take an active stance against fraud, waste, abuse and unethical activity. To help with this effort, the University has an Ethics and Compliance Reporting Hotline.”

In addition to video messaging, posters and digital signage will be visible across campus and all faculty and staff will receive a tip card with reporting information.

For more information on Fraud Awareness Week, or to report a fraud or ethical violation, visit or call 1-877-516-3445. Members of the public are also encouraged to report.

Botanic Garden’s science education program receives grant to help teachers

resized GSBGheritagepavilionphotobyjuliechurneyThe Botanic Garden at Georgia Southern University has received a three-year grant from the Institute of Museum of Library Services’ Museums for America program to help regional educators teach science more effectively. The grant, totaling more than $110,000, supports the ASTERS (Adventures in Science, Teaching, Exploration and Resourceful Stewardship) program.

In development since 2009, the program uses movement and hands-on outdoor activities to engage teachers and students with the content and skills they will need to solve scientific challenges. The project will help to build significantly on a successful partnership between the Botanic Garden, the University’s biology department, the  College of Education and area schools.

The ASTERS program employs purposeful movement, problem-solving simulations and hands-on grade specific curricula to provide new ways for teachers to effectively teach biology and environmental sciences. After attending three-day trainings at the Garden, where they will learn concepts, curricula and activities, teachers will return to the classroom to work with students on a chosen project. Over an extended time period, students might work together on a variety of activities culminating in the design of a national park or the rescue of an endangered species, for example. The students will then visit the Garden as a class to  enjoy a game of pollination tag, track deer through the Garden and many other active, outdoor activities designed to give students hands-on experience with important concepts.

“We believe children learn best when they are having fun and actively exploring a concept,” said Kathy Tucker, education coordinator for the Garden and ASTERS mastermind.

Tucker, who engaged students in active learning simulations as a middle school teacher in Bulloch County Schools’ gifted student Quest program, spent long hours developing curriculum that meets state science standards and also will be fun for the students.

“We have curriculum for each grade level from kindergarten through sixth grade,” added Tucker. “Teachers can implement it in the classroom, then bring their classes to the Garden for a fully funded field trip so the children can apply concepts out in the Garden. Everyone, including me, has a wonderful time, and we learn by doing.”

Garden Director Carolyn Altman is pleased that the Garden will have three years to focus on ASTERS.

“We’re looking forward to reaching out to the STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Math) community,” said Altman. “STEM tends to focus on engineering, but as the recent weather-related events have demonstrated, many of our challenges will be prompted by biological issues, which affect our way of life — clean air, clean water, climate and agriculture. The solutions to these challenges, whether they are engineering or otherwise, will require a strong biological understanding.”

Teachers interested in participating in the ASTERS program should contact the Garden at 912-871-1149.

About the Institute of Museum and Library Services

imls_logo_2cThe Institute of Museum and Library Services is the primary source of federal support for the nation’s 123,000 libraries and 35,000 museums. Our mission is to inspire libraries and museums to advance innovation, lifelong learning, and cultural and civic engagement. Our grant making, policy development, and research help libraries and museums deliver valuable services that make it possible for communities and individuals to thrive. To learn more, visit and follow IMLS on Facebook and Twitter.


Georgia Southern University, a public Carnegie Doctoral/Research University founded in 1906, offers more than 125 degree programs serving more than 20,500 students. Through eight colleges, the University offers bachelor’s, master’s and doctoral degree programs built on more than a century of academic achievement. Georgia Southern is recognized for its student-centered and hands-on approach to education. Visit

Highway Safety Officials Offering CMV Training To Honor Nursing Students

2011GOHSLOGOFollowing multiple fatal crashes involving commercial trucks and passenger vehicles this year, the Georgia Department of Public Safety and Governor’s Office of Highway Safety have announced a free training class that will give law enforcement officers additional instruction in commercial motor vehicle citations, crash investigations and crash prevention. The training is being offered tomorrow, Nov. 12, to mark the six-month anniversary of the I-16 crash that killed five Georgia Southern University nursing students when they were involved in a collision with a tractor trailer.

The class is offered in partnership with Georgia Southern at the university’s Shooting Sports Education Center and coincides with the recent launch of the yearlong Stop The Threatcampaign, which is a high visibility enforcement program by the Georgia State Patrol and Motor Carrier Compliance Division to target the unsafe driving practices of CMV drivers.

“Education and enforcement go hand-in-hand to promote traffic safety on our state’s roadways,” Georgia Department of Public Safety Commissioner Colonel Mark W McDonough said.  “These classes will help law enforcement officers identify the common contributing factors in commercial vehicle crashes and what actions they can take to correct the driving infraction before a crash occurs.”

From 2008 to 2014, Georgia averaged 100 large truck crashes per year with an average of almost 113 fatalities each year. That means that for the last seven years, at least one person has died in every large truck collision. That is the kind of deadly math Georgia does not want motorists to learn.

“The Governor’s Office of Highway Safety plans to make this training available to as many officers as possible through our traffic enforcement networks,” GOHS Director Harris Blackwood said. “This is another tool we can use in our effort to reduce injuries and fatalities on Georgia roads.”

Law enforcement statewide were invited to pre-register for today’s training class, which is being offered in both a morning and afternoon session. Interim Georgia Southern President Jean Bartels, who was the Provost of the GSU nursing school at the time of the students’ death, is scheduled to address the class.

Georgia Southern’s College of Business Online Master in Economics program ranked in top five

The Georgia Southern University Master of Science in Applied Economics degree has been named in the five best online master in economics degree programs by provides in-depth rankings of degree programs and colleges and universities. When ranking degree programs or colleges and universities, balances academic excellence, return on investment and indirect or secondary benefits.

A master’s degree in economics provides a solid foundation of the fundamental tools needed to perform evaluations of economic issues and policies. The degree requires strong analytical and quantitative skills, which makes graduates of such programs valuable employees in many industries. The Georgia Southern Online Master in Applied Economics program is fully online, featuring small class sizes and a flexible schedule. Students complete the 30-hour program in two years and exit the program with concrete analytical skills in financial economics, regulatory issues and economic development. The AACSB—International program prepares its graduates for careers in government, financial institutions and industry, and helps students analyze profit maximization strategies, as well as consumers’ choices.

To view “The Five Best Online Master in Economics Degree Programs,” visit

For more information on the Georgia Southern Online Master of Science in Applied Economics program and other business graduate programs within the Georgia Southern College of Business, go to

Georgia Southern University, a public Carnegie Doctoral/Research University founded in 1906, offers more than 125 degree programs serving more than 20,500 students. Through eight colleges, the University offers bachelor’s, master’s and doctoral degree programs built on more than a century of academic achievement. Georgia Southern is recognized for its student-centered and hands-on approach to education. Visit


Gov. Nathan Deal today announced that Aspen Aerogels, Inc., a leading provider of high-performance aerogel insulation, will create more than 100 jobs and invest more than $70 million in Statesboro.

“Aspen Aerogels is a major addition to Georgia’s thriving technology industry,” said Deal. “The company’s Statesboro location offers close proximity to our top-notch transportation infrastructure and some of our first-class academic institutions. I am confident that our highly-skilled workforce and competitive resources will be uniquely beneficial for Aspen’s growth in Georgia.”

Aspen Aerogels manufactures energy infrastructure insulation used in refineries, petrochemical plants, LNG facilities, power plants and related operations. Aspen Aerogels manufactures its products in the U.S. and exports more than 60 percent of annual production to international markets.

“The factors we considered to choose Bulloch County as the site for our second manufacturing facility were compelling,” said Don Young, President and CEO of Aspen Aerogels. “The 43-acre Statesboro site is served by rail and provides excellent access to the Port of Savannah. The City of Statesboro and the surrounding region is served by a well-developed technical education system featuring Georgia Southern University, Ogeechee Technical College and East Georgia State College. In addition, the region is home to a strong, available workforce and will provide Aspen with secure and low-cost utilities and good access to critical raw materials. We also received great support from the State of Georgia, Bulloch County and the City of Statesboro. We are excited to become an active member of the local community.”

Aspen Aerogels currently employs more than 250 personnel at facilities in Northborough, Mass., and East Providence, R.I.

“The Statesboro-Bulloch County community is proud to have Aspen Aerogels choose to locate here,” said Garrett Nevil, Chairman of the Bulloch County Board of Commissioners. “The decision is a great example of our community’s team working together to bring this company and its quality jobs to our area.”

“The City of Statesboro welcomes Aspen Aerogels to our progressive and business friendly community,” said Statesboro Mayor Jan Moore. “We believe that Aspen will be a great success story for our community.”

Georgia Department of Economic Development (GDEcD) project manager Wylly Harrison represented the Global Commerce division throughout this project in collaboration with the Development Authority of Bulloch County, Georgia Quick Start, Georgia EMC and the Georgia Ports Authority.

“Being a part of the No. 1 business climate in the nation means access to a skilled workforce, a collaborative group of state and local partners, a well-connected infrastructure and a high quality of life,” said GDEcD Commissioner Chris Carr. “We continue to attract top-tier prospects, like Aspen Aerogels, because of this unique combination, and we look forward to working with them to build upon their existing success in the thermal management industry.”

Aspen Aerogels

Aspen Aerogels is an energy technology company that designs, develops and manufactures innovative, high-performance aerogel insulation used primarily in large-scale energy infrastructure facilities. Headquartered in Northborough, Mass., Aspen Aerogels manufactures its Cryogel®, Pyrogel® and Spaceloft® products at its East Providence, R.I. facility. For more information, visit

Office of Vice President for Research and Economic Development • P.O. Box 8140, Statesboro, GA 30458 • (912) 478-8641 •