We are pleased to inform you that the establishment of the CIResilience Research program in 2010 coincided with the appointment of Professor Chee-Wooi Ten as a tenure-track assistant professor at Michigan Tech. Despite being a junior faculty member on the tenure track at the time, the journey has been both challenging and highly productive. Your interest in supporting the program is greatly appreciated.
CIResilience 1.0: “Publish or perish!”
In academia, the primary objective is to generate new knowledge through research and publication. This entails collaborating with graduate students and other researchers to publish articles, which can be leveraged to secure additional funding through grant proposals. This process is a fundamental aspect of a thriving research program, as it is commonplace among most R1 institutions across the country.
As part of higher education, tenure-track and tenured faculty members bear the responsibility of shaping the instruction that enables our undergraduate and graduate students to master the critical subjects of their chosen discipline. Mathematical models, including Ohm’s law, are core components of electrical engineering, for instance.
At each stage of the tenure-track or professorship rank, we recognize the importance of scholarly publication. While some cooperative organizations or sponsors may not place a high priority on publication, this could ultimately be a disservice to the professor in the long run. Graduating PhD students and coaching graduate students to publish before they graduate is essential for achieving tenure and promotion.
CIResilience 2.0: “Impacts (internationally)”
The perception of tenured faculty as the ultimate goal of an academic career is interesting. However, we have come to understand that advancing knowledge by collaborating with other researchers is equally important. As such, we have teamed up with a diverse group of experts around the country for collaborative proposals, which has been encouraged by the US National Science Foundation (NSF) to bridge gaps and promote far-reaching impacts. We understand the importance of forming alliances to impact the international community positively. This includes providing editorial services and reaching out to other professional societies to promote interdisciplinary research. We also promote actuarial frameworks in power engineering and cybersecurity and edit/write undergraduate and graduate-level textbooks. Moreover, we have brought in PSERC, one of the I/UCRCs that links Michigan Tech with other institutions. These efforts will have a significant impact on the academic curriculum in the long run.
CIResilience 3.0: “Research should not be a biproduct of teaching”
It is important to acknowledge that for many non-tenure teaching professors, the idea that teaching is a byproduct of scholarly publications can be an inconvenient truth. Scholarly publications and textbooks are often the fundamental knowledge that informs classroom instruction. However, the textbook industry faces challenges in keeping up with the pace of new developments in various fields, which can result in obsolete content being taught to students. We recognize that this can be difficult for non-tenure-track faculty who are responsible for delivering this content to their students. It is important to address these challenges and support our faculty to ensure that students receive the most up-to-date and relevant education possible.
CIResilience 4.0: “Renewed missions”
In light of the insights gained over the years, our research program is aiming to establish cross-disciplinary collaborations with other fields. By doing so, we hope to create more funding opportunities and increase the visibility of our proposals. This ecosystem of pursuing top-notch scholarly publications will enable us to secure stronger funding opportunities, which in turn will enable us to bring theoretical innovations to life and potentially commercialize them for the benefit of industry members.