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Research Briefs

May 27, 2008

Baylor School of Social Work

receives Ford Foundation grant

Baylor's School of Social Work has received a $200,000 grant from the Ford Foundation to study how clergy sexual abuse can be prevented in the future.

Dr. Diana Garland, dean of the School of Social Work, will head the research team, working with Dr. Mark Chaves of Duke University. The two-year study will include a national survey and study of prevention strategies to create the foundation for an approach that would prevent future abuse through public education.

This is the first grant Baylor has received from the Ford Foundation, a charitable organization chartered in 1936 by Edsel Ford and dedicated to advancing human welfare. The grant is among the largest given out by the foundation this year.

Study to help protect Texas fish

Dr. Bryan Brooks, an associate professor of environmental science and biomedical studies at Baylor, and researchers from Texas A&M University and the University of Texas at Arlington have received a $498,000 grant from the Texas Parks and Wildlife Department for a comparative study of golden algae growth at Lake Waco and Lake Granbury near Dallas.

The researchers will biomanipulate nutrients in the lakes' algae hotspots to see what effect, if any, it might have on golden algae growth.

Along the Brazos River, more than six million fish have been killed since 1988 due to high golden algae levels, according to Texas Parks and Wildlife. In 2005, more than a million fish died in Lake Whitney over a three-month period. Officials believe large golden algae blooms contributed to the deaths, attacking the fishes' gills and causing them to suffocate.

"If we can figure out different concentrations of nutrients that can stimulate the growth of other algae, we might be able to hinder the growth of golden algae. It would be a biological control method," Brooks said.

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