February 12, 2018

Tedrick gift expands research, creative opportunities for undergrads

by Tim Crosby

CARBONDALE, Ill. – A gift from Southern Illinois University Carbondale alumni Roger and Sally Tedrick will expand opportunities for SIU students to get involved with research and creative activities as part of a world-class undergraduate experience, according to SIU Chancellor Carlo Montemagno.

Currently, about 25 students receive funding for research and creative projects each year through a program called “REACH,” which stands for “Research-enriched Academic Challenge.” Past projects have ranged from biomedical research on the endocrine system to finding lost grave sites and researching and preserving artifacts to designing formal wear for people who use wheelchairs.

The Tedrick Undergraduate Research Fellowship will increase the number of students who can participate to about 40 each year. The donation from the Tedricks provides $50,000 a year in grant money for five years.

Montemagno said the awards give students the opportunity to gain real-world experience in their field of interest.

 “Providing our undergraduate students with strong research and creative opportunities has set SIU apart, and this donation only strengthens that commitment,” said Montemagno. “Such opportunities prepare our students for the challenges they will face after graduation, either in graduate school or in their chosen fields of employment.”

REACH awards support the projects of qualified, full-time undergraduate students who compete for funding. Awards are granted based on the evaluation of the applications by a panel composed of experts from a range of academic backgrounds.

Selected students can receive up to $2,000 for their project and an assistantship that will pay for the student to work up to 10 hours per week on it. Teams can receive an additional $500 per additional team member. To be eligible, a student must be a sophomore or higher and carry a GPA of at least 2.8.

The Tedrick donation also creates a new “Best in Category” award. This special recognition is based on the quality of the students’ applications and the promise of their proposed research or creative activity. One student in each of the following disciplines will be recognized: art and design, humanities, communication/media, science and engineering. 

To apply, students should submit an application by March 30. The first awards including the new funding will be made in mid-April. 

Roger Tedrick is a 1970 SIU graduate and Sally Tedrick graduated in 1973. Both are longtime SIU supporters and life members of the SIU Alumni Association.

Roger Tedrick is owner, president and CEO of Tedrick Insurance Agency in Mount Vernon. He has served on the SIU Foundation Board and as its president, also serving as chair of the Saluki Futures Campaign for athletic facilities.  He was a member of the SIU Board of Trustees from 2004 to 2011, presiding over the board as chair for six years.  His university service also includes service on the SIU Alumni Association Board of Directors.