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Research Initiatives

In 2022, researchers in the College of Arts and Sciences received more than $21,500,000 in external funding, from over 60 different sponsors across the entire range of disciplines in the College. We are well on our way to exceeding that total in 2023 and setting another record for grant performance. The total grant activity, including grants where our faculty are Co-PI on grants with faculty members from other Colleges and Research Centers, exceeds $120M.

Below are a few highlights of the integral research taking place in the College of Arts & Sciences. 

Researching Equitable Sleep Time in Kentucky Communities (REST-KY)

Crystal Badour and Mairead Moloney

Lauren WhitehurstLed by Crystal Badour and Mairead Moloney, the REST-KY program is a collaboration across four colleges at UK focused on understanding the causes and consequences of sleep deficiencies in rural populations.​ 

Dr. Whitehurst’s goal is to identify biopsychosocial factors linked to sleep in Black Americans and to inform and develop targeted treatment efforts that leverage sleep to increase health equity.  She is developing new partnerships with identified community stakeholders, including established non-profits and community providers, and developing community events in Fayette County to foster sleep education.​

The Right-To-Farm for Small and Medium-Sized Farmers: A National Legal Analysis

Loka Ashwood

Loka Ashwood’s research studies the corporate hierarchy and relationships that shape monopoly and oligopoly power in agriculture and food globally. For-Profit Democracy - book by Loka AshwoodDomestically, she studies how property rights and corporate ownership of farmland shape market power and the dispossession of rural smallholders. Funded in part by the USDA, her research builds upon grassroots relationships with communities and social organizational groups to use research findings to enact change to strengthen democracy.  ​

A Collaboration to Evaluate the Outcomes of a Therapeutic Horticulture Program at a Domestic Violence Shelter​

Claire RenzettiDr. Renzetti is finishing a National Institute of Justice-funded evaluation of the therapeutic horticulture (TH) program at the local battered women's shelter, GreenHouse17. GreenHouse17 She is investigating whether the shelter residents who participate in the TH program have better outcomes (psychological, physical, social, and financial) than women who receive standard shelter programming. Therapeutic horticulture has not been used at a battered women's shelter before -- it's primarily used with traumatized veterans, the elderly, and juveniles involved in the correctional system -- and since the project as a researcher-practitioner partnership, the staff at the center can continue evaluating the TH program after the study is finished.  ​

Samuel Awauh, Chemistry

Samual AwauhProf. Awuah’s research interest is focused on leveraging unique structural diversity of transition metal and metalloid complexes with streamlined functional and systems biology to identify efficacious drug leads. Of importance is to design and employ novel drug leads to exploit pathophysiological vulnerabilities in cancer, microbial infections, digestive and neurodegenerative diseases toward targeted metallodrugs.​

Prof. Awauh’s research has been funded by the American Cancer Society, the National Science Foundation, and the National Institutes of Health.​