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Developing Initiatives

Developing initiatives are possible precursors to what one day may become an official program or center within the College of Liberal Arts. 

CRISS – Center for Research Impact of Social Sciences

CRISS serves as a meeting place and connection point bringing together faculty from different disciplines who are working on social science research for the public good. Current research projects officed in CRISS include Dr. Rebecca Brooker, Dr. Anna Wolfe, and Dr. Allegra Midgette who are studying the impact of universal masking on children’s development and Dr. Carlo Horz and Dr. Mortiz Marbach who are studying the political economy of granting asylum.

The CRISS space is located on the fourth floor south wing of the Academic Building. The intent of this renovated space is to support interdisciplinary research in the social sciences. CRISS will advance strategic priorities to champion influential research and build community, as well as cultivate our cross-cutting themes, as outlined in the college’s strategic plan, Shape the Future, 2021-2026. The CRISS Facility is comprised of multiple small and medium-sized offices which are assigned to CRISS-related projects. The building conference room and common spaces are shared with the Race and Ethnic Studies Institute (RESI).

CRISS Conference Space

Three conference rooms are available to support CRISS functions including ACAD 404 (1395 asf, 60 seats), ACAD 403 (621 asf, 20 seats), and ACAD 406E (330 asf, 7 seats). Conference rooms can be reserved for purposes consistent with the guidelines below by emailing

Conference Room Reservation Guidelines for ACAD 404, 403, and 406E

  • Conference rooms should not be used without prior reservation.
  • CRISS space is intended to generally support social science research; not to supplement or replace classroom teaching space.
  • The highest priority in the reservation of conference rooms will go to faculty with social science collaboration supported projects for team meetings, conference, workshops, or public-facing events and to activities associated with or sponsored by the Race & Ethnic Studies Institute.
  • If available, conference rooms may be reserved for conferences or workshops to which faculty from across the college are invited or public-facing events involving social science research. Although a lower priority in scheduling, non-social science conferences and workshops may be scheduled in the space, subject to availability.
  • CRISS space is not intended to replace departmental or administrative meeting space on a regular basis. Due to increased demands for space in which social distancing is possible during the 2021-2022 academic year, exceptions may be granted.
  • Conference rooms may not be used for:
    • Undergraduate and graduate classes (including thesis or dissertation defenses)
    • Student organizations, even those affiliated with social science departments or off-campus groups

Reservation Guidelines for Reception Room ACAD 406

ACAD 406 is a 330 square feet area appropriate for reception functions which is supported by a 144 square feet break room (ACAD 406A). The highest priority use of the reception areas would be for CRISS-approved functions; lower priority would include college or unit-level receptions. Units using this space must reserve and clean the space after usage. Student functions will not be approved.