Introduction

The Pilot Project Program facilitates specialized research training of graduate students, junior faculty or new investigators, and promotes the development of multi-disciplinary research addressing NORArelated topics in the areas of occupational health or safety. The Southern California NIOSH Education and Research Center (ERC) awards for one-year pilot projects to support occupational health and safety research training for students (including ERC trainees), new investigators, and new faculty (within 6 years of initial appointment). Funding is provided for small research projects or pilot studies to explore feasibility, to collect preliminary data, and to enable investigators to seek external, longer-term funding. Applications need to address topics relevant to NORA research areas, including cross sector goals.

Who should Apply

Students and young investigators are particularly encouraged to apply, and with all other factors equal, will receive funding priority. Non-faculty must have a full-time faculty member to sponsor their project. Faculty sponsors and students must be identified as such in the proposal. Projects involving human subjects should apply for human subject approval from their IRB at the earliest opportunity and attach their submitted human subject protocol to the research proposal. All pilot project grantees are required to submit quarterly progress reports and to present their research results, if selected, in the fall of the following year at an ERC-wide meeting. In addition, grantees are expected to present their research at a scientific conference and to submit a manuscript based on their research results to a peer-reviewed journal.

How to Apply

Submit a one-page work document of a Letter of Intent describing the proposed project via email to Dr. Krause (niklaskrause@ucla.edu) and cc Dr. Arias (oarias@ucla.edu) with a heading, ‘ERC pilot LOI.’

Applications must include:

  • Cover page with title, contact information, faculty sponsor if applicant is a trainee, NORA sector and
    occupational safety and health area(s) addressed by the proposal, and the status of IRB approval;
    • Abstract of the proposal (maximal 250 words);
    • Description of the project (3-5 pages, plus bibliography);
    • Human subjects protocol as draft or as submitted to local IRB;
    • Budget and budget justification for a 12-15 month period ending no later than September 15, 2017;
    • Bio-sketch (NIH format) of applicant (and faculty sponsor(s) if applicable).

Applications will be subjected to peer review. Awardees will be asked to respond to reviewers’ comments before a final decision is being made. The primary review criteria are:

1) Relevance to workplace health and safety and NORA research areas
2) Scientific merit / methodological quality
3) Qualification of applicant, institutional environment, and feasibility
4) Stimulation of interdisciplinary research and translation into practice
5) Likelihood of resulting in publication in a peer-reviewed journal
6) Likelihood of leading to future external funding
7) Novelty of ideas, methods, or application in a new occupational context
8) Appropriateness of budget and evidence that the proposed work is not otherwise funded

Please refer to the PPRT Application Guidelines

 

2017-2018

Awardee NameInstitute StatusResearch Project Title
Teni Adewumi-GunnEHS-IH/ UCLADoctoral Student“Development and Implementation of a Personal Protective Equipment Training Program for Cosmetologists"
Nathan PoonMechanical Engineering/ UC BerkeleyDoctoral Student“Evaluation of a Trunk Supporting Exoskeleton for reducing risk for back injury due to fatigue"
Logan Thomas Van EngelhovenMechanical Engineering/ UC BerkeleyDoctoral Student “Evaluation of a Shoulder Support Exoskeleton on Static and Dynamic Overhead Tasks”
Robert Canales Community, Environment & Policy Department/ U. of ArizonaNew Investigator“Methodologies for Analysis of continuous time series measurements relevant for occupational health"
Vikram HaridassEpidemiology/ UCIDoctoral Student“Occupational cancer risk in California teachers and risk modification by history of anti-inflammatory, anti-hypertensive, anti-cholesterol medication use”

2016-2017

Awardee NameInstitute StatusResearch Project Title
Abdullah Khafagy OEM/ UCSFOEM resident"Evaluation of the occupational cardiovascular strain of the hotel housekeepers resulting from high levels of physical activity while making beds and cleaning hotel rooms"
Jonah Lipsitt EHS/ UCLADoctoral student"Physical Activity Through Sustainable Transport Activities (PASTA) in Los Angeles"
Vahe Khachadourian Epidemiology/ UCLADoctoral student"Back pain burden and its determinants among vulnerable farmers: from empirical analysis to simulated policies"
Venkat Venkatasubramanian Business Administration/ UC BerkeleyMaster student"Force, repetition and posture estimations of the distal upper
extremity using surface electromyography and inertial
measurement units"
Rania Sabty-Daily Labor Occupational Safety and Health (LOSH)/ UCLANew Investigator"Design a Heat App (for use with smart phone technology), as a tool for heat illness intervention, training and data collection among construction day laborers in California"

2015-2016

Awardee NameInstitute StatusResearch Project Title
Charlene NguyenUCLAMaster Student, EHS, IH ProgramA New Indoor Air Mitigation Strategy for Nail Salons Based on Correlations Between Indoor Air Quality and Occupancy
Teofilia AcheampongUC IrvineDoctoral Student, EpidemiologyOccupational Exposures and Risk of Breast Cancer: The Singapore Chinese Health Study
Javier Garcia-RivasUC IrvineDoctoral Student, Public HealthExploring working conditions and injury among Day Laborers in Orange County
Negar OmidakhshUCLADoctoral Student, EpidemiologyPaternal occupational exposures and risk of sporadic retinoblastoma among offspring.
Nicolas Lopez-GalvezU. ArizonaDoctoral Student, EHSAn Observational Pilot Study of the Effect of Heat Stress on Pesticide Exposure in Migrant Farmworkers in Sonora, Mexico
Deborah CurtisUCLADoctoral Student, OEHNThe association between work place racism obesity and shiftwork among African American nurses
Abdullah KhafagyUCSFPostdoctoral Researcher, OEM ResidentEvaluation of the occupational cardiovascular strain of the hotel housekeepers resulting from high levels of physical activity while making beds and cleaning hotel rooms
Jonah LipsittUCLADoctoral Student, EHSPhysical Activity Through Sustainable Transport Activities (PASTA) in Los Angeles
Vahe KhachadourianUCLADoctoral Student, EpidemiologyBack pain burden and its determinants among vulnerable farmers: from empirical analysis to simulated policies
Dal Lae ChinUCSFPost-doctoral Researcher, OEHNAssociation of Occupational Noise Exposure with Cardiovascular Diseases
among Career Firefighters
Venkat VenkatasubramanianUC BerkeleyMaster student, Business AdministrationForce, repetition and posture estimations of the distal upper extremity using surface
electromyography and inertial measurement units
Rania Sabty-DailyUCLANew Investigator, Industrial Hygienist, Labor and Occupational Safety and Health Program (LOSH)Design a Heat App (for use with smart phone technology), as a tool for heat illness intervention, training and data collection among construction
day laborers in California

2014-2015

Awardee NameInstitute StatusResearch Project Title
Shi Shu EHS/ UCLAPost-doctoral researcher"Exploratory investigation on chemical reactions initiated by indoor ultraviolet light: Evidence of reaction and UFP Generation"
Eon Lee EHS/ UCLAPost-doctoral researcher"Application of low-cost sensor air quality instruments to monitor school bus driver’s exposure to vehicle-emitted particulate pollutants"
Zeyan Liew Epidemiology/ UCLAPost-doctoral researcher"Occupational pesticide exposure and depression"
BongKyoo ChoiCenter of Occupational and Environmental Health (COEH)/ UC Irvine Junior Faculty"Exploring occupational and behavioral risk factors for obesity in urban bus drivers"

2013-2014

Awardee NameInstitute StatusResearch Project Title
Katherine McNamara EHS-IH/ UCLADoctoral Student"Shift work, fatigue and health in south bay refinery workers"
Carisa Harris- AdamsonPhysical Therapy/ Samuel Merrit UniversityJunior Faculty"Biomechanical evaluation of hotel room cleaners while making luxury beds with and without a mattress lift tool"
Nu Yu EHS-IH/ UCLADoctoral student"Los Angeles taxi drivers’ occupational exposures to polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbon: Biomarkers for exposure and health effects. "
Heidi Fisher Biostatistics/ UCLADoctoral Student"Case-control study of occupational exposure to electric shocks and magnetic fields and amyotrophic lateral sclerosis using the Swedish patient register from 1987 to 2009 with bias analysis"
Michele Wargo-SuglerisOEHN/ UCLADoctoral Student"Job satisfaction, work environment, and successful aging: determinants to remain in older acute care nurses"

2012-2013

Awardee NameInstitute StatusResearch Project Title
Citadel CabasagEpidemiology/ UC Irvine Doctoral Student"Evaluating the association between occupational agents and cancer risks in the Long Beach Naval Shipyard Cohort"
Linda Lee Social Welfare/UCLADoctoral Student"Home care workers’ health"
Soo-Jeong Lee OEHN/ UCSFJunior Faculty"LMusculoskeletal disorders among California nurses: impact of safe patient handling law"

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