With a plethora of grants streaming into the university each year, there has to be a strong support staff to help monitor financial regulations and compliance.
One of the staff members who does just that is Cedric Miller, an accountant in Contracts and Grants, part of the University Business and Accounting Services, a division of the Office of the Vice President for Finance and Administration.
“We handle all of the financial end of grants that come into the university, which could be from the federal government, other universities or even from state and local governments,” Miller said. “We make certain that grants are in financial compliance and that departments are reimbursed or funded for the work they do.”
To do so, he often has to read and examine some of the research that was funded by a grant.
“We read a lot of the research to make certain that these regulations are met,” he said. “Doing so allows researchers to focus solely on carrying out the research.”
Miller, who received management and accounting degrees from Wayne State University, also has to read contracts, budgets and results that go into the grant and research process. This helps keep grants ongoing and in proper order.
“The University of Georgia provides some of the most well-known research in the country,” he said, “and we get to participate in the beginning stage, which is inspiring.
“The projects at UGA are done on such an excellent level that to be a part of that team fostering the future of a lot of different areas of research is a complete honor,” Miller also said.
In addition to monitoring grant compliance, Miller also serves as the president for the university’s Black Faculty and Staff Organization, which partners with UGA in its efforts to recruit and retain black faculty, staff and students. Miller, who has been at UGA for 18 months, became involved with BFSO after being invited to a diversity luncheon and meeting some of the group’s members.
“I saw that the organization was working with the university to mentor students and working to help the university with diversity issues, along with working in the community,” Miller said. “I was really intrigued by the work that was being done and wanted to get involved.”
Miller said this year the BFSO plans to reach out to the Athens community more, which includes hosting an entrepreneur seminar, a career workshop and holding a health fair on Nov. 20. The organization also continues to serve as a social group as well as help strengthen the university’s work on promoting diversity.
“Our goal is to be the best, and that is an attainable goal for the University of Georgia. The door has to be open to different possibilities of how that can happen,” he said. “When you think about individuals who contribute to making an institution great, we never know where that next genius is going to come from, but at the University of Georgia, we’re family and we’ll work towards this together.”
Miller said the BFSO will continue to help create cohesiveness among members of the campus community as it “creates a new future.”
“We’re at the point now at the university where everything is going to the next level,” he said. “When you have people with different perspectives work together, it creates an opportunity to do things in a different way, and even better than before.”