Dr. Tesfaye, Professor of Biology, Bluefield State University Bluefield State University has received a $444,000 Academic Research Enhancement Award (R15) from the National Institute of Health. Dr. Tesfaye Belay, a BSU Professor of Biology, authored the grant, which provides funding over three years for supporting research, creating research opportunities for students, and strengthening the research environment at the University. The funding will support examining the relationship between cold-induced stress and sexually transmitted diseases in a mouse model. “This NIH grant is extremely important to BSU because it provides funding to support five of the University’s student researchers. This will prepare these students to enter graduate school or secure positions involving research as a career,” noted Dr. Belay. “It affirms the University’s increasing research capability and performance, which create greater opportunities for current and future BSU students to receive outstanding STEM-centered education.” As a fellow of the West Virginia Idea Network for Biomedical Research Excellence (INBRE), Dr. Belay received several sub-awards from NIH, including R15, in 2016. The BSU faculty member and 13 Bluefield State students published scientific articles in peer-reviewed journals through those awards. Dr. Belay also thanked the BSU Administration and the University’s Office of Research and Sponsored Programs for their vital roles in obtaining the NIH AREA Award.