Contact Information

sharon franks and paul yu

Research Development

Limited Submissions, Funding Opportunity Identification, and Internal Funding Programs








Office of Research Affairs

UCSD Main Campus
Building: 965 University Center
On the corner of Gilman Drive and Russell Lane.

Parking is available in the Gilman Parking Structure.

Sharon E. R. Franks, Ph.D.
Director, Research Proposal Development Service

Dr. Franks has worked at UC San Diego since 1993. From 2009 to the present her primary focus has been facilitating the development of major interdisciplinary grant proposals across campus. She has contributed to the success of numerous multi-investigator research initiatives and extramural awards totaling more than $700 million. In her current position, Dr. Franks has provided guidance, coordination and in-depth support for more than 200 research proposals to federal, state and private sponsors including NIH, NSF, DOE, DOD, NASA, USDA, NIST, NEH, CIRM, and the Packard, Keck, Moore and Sloan Foundations, among others. The majority of these proposals were multimillion-dollar, multi-investigator, multi-institution, interdisciplinary proposals with budgets totaling more than $2 billion. In addition to major proposal development, Dr. Franks’ foci include professional development for early-career investigators and guidance to researchers at all levels on identifying relevant funding opportunities and collaborators. She is an active member of the UC Research Development Network and the National Organization of Research Development Professionals. Prior to joining the Office of Research Affairs in 2007, Dr. Franks created and led institutionalization of a proposal development program at Scripps Institution of Oceanography that provided individualized assistance to academics and graduate students in addressing the full spectrum of broader impacts, one of two NSF merit review criteria. She earned her B.A. in Earth Sciences from Dartmouth College, and a Ph.D. in Oceanography from Oregon State University.

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Lynsey Fitzpatrick
Strategic Research Opportunities Analyst

Lynsey serves as UCSD’s program manager for limited submission grants. She previously managed innovation design initiatives, launching a campus-wide proof-of-concept fund and serving as vice-chair of Ignite, the largest university entrepreneurship conference in southern California. She spent 15 years at Harvard and MIT, serving as liaison between executive and faculty leadership in MIT’s Office of the President and managing communications for MIT’s largest international collaboration (in Moscow). Prior roles include development communications, private sector business development and international outreach. Lynsey received an MA in Russian/Eurasian studies and BA in anthropology from Harvard University

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Shannon E. Muir, Ph.D.
Director, Research Proposal Development Service

Dr. Shannon Muir supports the development of large proposals led by UCSD faculty members, and assists with early-career proposal preparation, specializing in health and biological sciences. Prior to joining UC San Diego as a staff member, she was a Senior Program Associate with the California Council on Science and Technology (CCST), where she worked with the Department of Energy and NASA Laboratories located in California to increase their presence in Sacramento. She also cultivated donors from a variety of private foundations and donor advice funds across the state, and helped to secure hundreds of thousands of dollars in philanthropic support. Shannon was a CCST Science Policy Fellow in 2015, serving as a consultant for the California Senate Committee on Health. During her Fellowship, she analyzed legislation related to a wide variety of topics including electronic cigarettes, internet prescribing, health insurance, and aging and long-term care. Prior to the Fellowship, Shannon earned her Ph.D. in Biomedical Sciences from UC San Diego, where she studied the role of miRNA in pediatric cancer. Shannon holds and M.S. in Pharmacology from Tulane University School of Medicine, where her thesis work focused on chemokines in breast cancer metastasis. She earned her B.S. in Psychobiology from UCLA.

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Wendy K. Groves
Director, Research Proposal Development Service

Wendy Groves has worked as a research development and program management professional at UC San Diego since 2010. She has more than 15 years of administration and project management experience in consultancy, education, and career development with significant experience in the environment, energy and clean technology areas. Prior to 2018, Ms. Groves was the Research Program Manager for two energy and sustainability research units at UC San Diego - the Center for Energy Research (CER) and Food & Fuel for the 21st Century (FF21) – where her primary role was to identify and facilitate research collaborations, assisting in proposal preparation, project management and reporting. She has provided support and coordination for nearly 200 research proposals to federal, state and private sponsors including DOE, CEC, UCOP, DOD, USDA, NIH, NSF. She has also served as a project manager on four multi-million dollar consortia projects while at UC San Diego. Prior to her role at UC San Diego, Ms. Groves worked as an administrator and served as a Board Member for several environment and sustainability organizations, including in the environmental consulting, clean tech start-up, education and training non-profit, and environmental professional organization areas. Ms. Groves received her B.A. in Psychology from Bowdoin College.

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