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Released July 28, 2005


Hattiesburg- University of Southern Mississippi President Dr. Shelby Thames issued checks Tuesday to 45 faculty and staff members as part of an incentive program that rewards those who secure and manage contract and grant support.

In all, more than $525,000 was distributed through the incentive policy, called Model for Incentive Dollars for Augmenting Salaries (MIDAS). The fundamental goal of MIDAS, created lasted year, is to create an incentive base to grow and promote research activities and research enterprise for Southern Miss.

Dr. Cecil Burge, vice president for research and economic development at Southern Miss, said MIDAS provides a positive incentive to stimulate research activity that ultimately benefits the university community as a whole. Last year, 33 faculty and staff received more than $382,000 in the first year of the MIDAS program.

"When additional resources are secured through external sponsors, every faculty member, staff member, and student benefits," Burge said. "Incentive programs like MIDAS are vital in hiring and retaining outstanding faculty at Southern Miss."

Available during the fall and spring terms, MIDAS is open to full-time faculty and staff whose base salary is paid from the education and general (E&G) funds. The maximum research supplement is 30 percent of the regular academic salary, based on 100 percent released dollars.

To qualify for the supplement, the employee must recover at least 25 percent of his or her salary. Checks distributed to recipients Tuesday were gross amounts, unadjusted for federal and state taxes.

"This is a tremendous reward for faculty who work hard to bring in research dollars," said MIDAS recipient Dr. Agnes Hinton, professor of community health and co-director of the Center for Sustainable Health Outreach.

For more information about the MIDAS program, contact the vice president for research and economic development at (601) 266-5116.


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August 4, 2005 4:49 PM