Skop looks to bring faculty together at new research center


Emily Skop, associate professor, Department of Geography and Environmental Studies at UCCS, is looking for faculty members whose vision does not stop at the campus, state or national border. Skop, the newly appointed director of the Global Intercultural Research Center, wants to bring together faculty interested in bringing global perspectives to UCCS and working in a cross-disciplinary way to seek funding for research that rethinks human interaction across time and space.

“Whether it is infectious disease, climate change, or capital flows, we live in an interconnected world,” Skop said. “By building a community of scholars, I believe we can have a working group that exchanges ideas and works collaboratively to seek external support.”

Skop and Provost Mary Coussons-Read will introduce the concept this week. As an example of what she hopes the new center can accomplish, Skop cited the study of human migration, a subject that might be of interest to faculty in many academic disciplines. By creating an environment where faculty from varied fields can come together, she believes stronger sponsored research proposals are possible and that new ideas can find their way into classrooms.

A recent faculty survey indicated that more than 190 UCCS faculty members have global interests, Skop said. She hopes to bring those faculty members together, and potentially add to the group, with goals of increased sponsored research and giving students an improved global perspective.

“We can no longer separate ‘over there’ and ‘back then’ from what’s going on here and now,” Skop said.

While ideas are still being formulated about how to achieve those goals, Skop believes the effort will start with activities such as brown bag lunches, a working paper series, and seed grants to encourage UCCS faculty to try something new.