Our Mission

Bold Challenges events and programs are designed to support core the objectives:

  • Increases cross-school collaboration, public impact, and U-M’s competitiveness for large grants on essential challenges.
  • Forecasts funding opportunities and identifies comparative advantages.
  • Offers broad and inclusive pathways to large-scale external research funding.


Bold Challenges events empower U-M researchers to:

  • Meet collaborators
  • Learn from funders
  • Engage stakeholders
  • Improve communication
  • Enhance leadership skills
  • Build diverse, dynamic teams
  • Create stronger proposals


  • Bold Challenges programs are application-based and designed for cross-school teams.
  • The programs offer different levels of expert support for proposal development and funding opportunities for activities that are necessary for strong proposals

There are two programs:

  • BOOST is Bold Challenges’ Team Development Program. It empowers diverse and dynamic cross-school research groups to generate competitive large-scale proposals.
  • ACCELERATE is Bold Challenges’ Advanced Consulting Program. It offers a rigorous approach for cross-school teams ready to submit large proposals within the next 18 months. 

Bold Challenges Team Members

Arthur Lupia

Associate Vice President for Research, Large Scale Strategies

Nick Wiggington

AVP for Research – Strategic Initiatives

headshot of Jill Jividen

Senior Director of Research Development

Kelsey Ebbs

Kelsey Ebbs

Assistant Director

Email: klucinda@umich.edu

U-M Bold Challenges logo

Neil Carver

Research Development Officer

Email: carvern@umich.edu

Sean O'Connor

Sean O’Connor

Program Manager

Email: spoconno@umich.edu

Adrianna Trusiak

Adrianna Trusiak

Research Development Officer

Email: atrusiak@umich.edu

U-M Bold Challenges logo

Kelly Walters

Research Development Officer

Email: kelwalt@umich.edu