JMU professor brings home big award for research and teaching

HARRISONBURG, Va. (WHSV) — An assistant professor of chemistry at James Madison University has a reason to celebrate — he was awarded $100,000 through the Cottrell Scholar Award by Research Corporation for Science Advancement.

This is the second year a professor at JMU has won the award.

The award grants money toward teaching materials and research. Isaac Miller is a research assistant who said that the money will help his team purchase parts for a machine needed to further their work.

"I was excited because this research that we're going to be able to do has the potential to be published in a major scientific journal, which I think is very exciting, and I'm also just curious," said Miller.

Students built the machine to study atmospheric molecules, and the grant will help them dive deeper into the research they have started.

Assistant Professor Paul Raston, who won the award, said he is excited that it covers both the teaching and research aspects.

"It's not just the money, you know the $100,000 is great, it is going to be extremely useful to us; but it also allows for me to go to these meetings, these Cotrrell Scholar meetings where we exchange ideas about research and teaching," said Raston.

Through the grant, Raston will have the opportunity to attend meetings to exchange ideas with the 23 other scholars who won across the country.

This is the second year a JMU professor has won the prestigious award.