CHS Doctoral Student Receives Competitive NSCA Foundation Grant
Martin Dietze-Hermosa, a doctoral candidate in the Interdisciplinary Health Sciences PhD Program (mentor, Dr. Sandor Dorgo), was recently awarded a competitive grant of $7,279 from the National Strength and Conditioning Association (NSCA) Foundation. The grant will support costs associated with his dissertation, “Effects of an 8-week resisted sprint training program on ice skating speed, acceleration, and measures of athletic performance in male ice hockey players.”
Historically, the NSCA Foundation’s doctoral student grant category has been extremely competitive, with ten or fewer students awarded annually from hundreds of applicants across the nation. Upon learning about his award, Dietze-Hermosa, a member of the Fitness Research Facility, said he was humbled. He also credits his lab mates, Matthew Gonzalez, a current IHS PhD student, and Samuel Montalvo, a recent graduate of the program, who assisted him in the application.
Dietze-Hermosa mentioned that perseverance helped get him through the challenges of the grant writing process—he had submitted unsuccessfully twice prior to receiving this year’s award letter. He offered specific advice to students interested in submitting applications for similar funding opportunities.
“If you are passionate about your research, keep at it! Certainly, prior rejections were discouraging, especially given the time and effort that each submission requires,” he said. “However, I sought to improve my research question and grant writing skills with each submission. There are great resources available to students through the College of Health Sciences and Graduate School. Actively seeking out commentary from trusted peers, mentors, and faculty is paramount. I know faculty are eager to help students who are desiring to submit grants.”
As an NSCA Foundation grant recipient, Dietze-Hermosa believes he will not only benefit financially from the support for his final dissertation expenses but also from the association with peers and fellow grant recipients of the organization. Peering into the future, he also believes this experience, as well as his time in the Fitness Research Facility, will benefit him as a future academician, where he seems himself teaching and using research experiences in the classroom to foster deeper student learning.
“The [grant writing] experience, as a whole, bolstered my understanding of elements that contribute to a successful proposal. I can implement learned experiences and pass on information learned to students seeking grant funding,” he said. “My experiences at UTEP will contribute to continued research efforts and successful use of research during classroom instruction.”