Fall 2017 Grant Academy

Please direct all questions about the Grant Academy:

Melissa Throckmorton
Coordinator of Research Development Services, Office of Research and Innovation
throckmortms@vcu.edu; 827-1443

The Office of Research and Innovation is pleased to announce the Fall 2017 Grant Academy, a grantsmanship program providing training and support for a select cohort of early-stage investigators working with senior faculty, research development experts, and research administrators, with the goal of submitting a successful funding proposal.

The Fall 2017 cohort is focused on new faculty investigators, in all disciplines, across the University. This multi-faceted academy will offer assistance to selected faculty applicants who: 1) are new investigators who would benefit from individualized support, 2) currently have a concrete research project idea and are ready to develop a proposal, and 3) have identified a competitive funding opportunity with a submission deadline in the late spring or summer of 2018. Faculty participants will receive step-by-step guidance on proposal strategy, development and project management; scaffolded proposal preparation with intensive individual support from research development staff, and three-tiered review, including cohort peer partner feedback, internal VCU review by a participant identified senior faculty mentor, and access to an external review committee before submission.

The fall cohort will consist of 12 faculty participants. Applicants should be new investigators and able to consistently attend all cohort workshop sessions (detailed under the schedule tab below). Online applications to participate in the Fall 2017 Grant Academy are due by 5:00PM on Friday, October 13, 2017.

Fall 2017 Grant Academy Application Link

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The Grant Academy offers training and support that, when combined over a period of time, aim to steadily build understanding and skills in competitive grantsmanship.

  • Cohort meetings and workshops: Content workshops will focus on aspects of proposal development, including step-by-step guidance developing competitive extramural proposals, research and project design, persuasive communication and writing, grant submission, and building and maintaining relationships with the funder. Additional topics will focus on compliance and clinical trials.
  • NSF and NIH program officer visits: Program officers from NSF and NIH will present, including specifics regarding submitting successful proposals.
  • Intensive Proposal Review: All Grant Academy faculty participants will have their proposals reviewed by an external panel before submission. The participants will also participate in cohort peer review and identify a senior faculty member for an internal review.
  • Individualized Support & Technical Assistance: Each cohort member receives one-on-one attention and assistance from our Research Development staff until their proposal is submitted.

The Fall 2017 Grant Academy workshop sessions will take place from October 2017 through March 2018 (with continued proposal support through individual funding deadlines). Cohort workshops will meet for approximately two hours, with additional individual meetings with research development staff. Participants are expected to attend all scheduled cohort meetings. Participants are also encouraged to meet with each other, instructors and facilitators, or attend other related workshops at other times to supplement their training.

Scheduled workshop sessions will include presentations on: 1) how to craft your research project into a written proposal, 2) how to contact and talk with program officers about your research, 3) funder specific sessions (i.e., NSF, NIH, mission-based agencies, major foundations), 4) Sponsored Programs policies and submission procedures, 5) the policies and submission procedures for IRB/IACUC for proposals with human or animal subjects, 6) research ethics/integrity, 7) clinical trials, and more. A fully detailed schedule will be distributed to faculty cohort participants.

Fall 2017 Grant Academy Schedule

(tentative, subject to possible change)

(Please note that all workshop sessions will take place at the Office of Research and Innovation in BioTech One, 800 East Leigh Street, Suite 3000.)

Date Activity
October 13, 2017 Deadline for completed Fall 2017 Grant Academy online applications and submission of all required documents
October 19, 2017 Selected Grant Academy Participants and Faculty Mentors notified by email
October 24, 2017 Cohort Workshop I: 3:00 pm - 5:00 pm
October 31 – November 2, 2017 Cohort Workshop II: 4:00 pm – 5:00 pm (participants will pick one day and session based on their chosen funder)
November 28, 2017 Cohort Workshop III: 3:00 pm – 5:00 pm
December 2017 No Workshop Sessions
January 30, 2018 Cohort Workshop IV: 3:00 pm – 5:00 pm
February 27, 2018 Cohort Workshop V: 3:00 pm – 5:00 pm
March 27, 2018 Cohort Workshop VI: 3:00 pm – 5:00 pm
April 2018 Proposals reviewed by senior faculty mentors
April/May/June 2018 External reviews based on individual proposal deadlines
TBA- Spring 2018 Program Officer Visits to VCU

In order to participate in the Fall 2017 Grant Academy, faculty must meet the eligibility criteria below:

  1. Be a new investigator.
  2. Possess a concrete research project idea, with identified research questions.
  3. Be positioned to submit a full grant proposal in the spring/summer of 2018, including the identification of a funding opportunity.
  4. Commit to fully participate in all Grant Academy cohort workshops, reviews and individually scheduled meetings with the RD team.
  5. Identify a VCU senior faculty mentor.

Grant Academy faculty participation in cohort workshops, individual meetings with the Research Development team, as well as out-of-class proposal preparation is estimated at 10 hours per month (for 6 months). Therefore, all applicants will have to secure a departmental endorsement. This endorsement assures that the investigator will receive the necessary time to participate. In order to ensure full support for participants, the Grant Academy cohort will be limited to 12 faculty.

Grant Academy cohort members will be expected to:

  • Participate in all Grant Academy cohort workshops and sessions.
  • Complete all assignments and meet milestones.
  • Actively engage with cohort peers, including providing oral and written proposal feedback to Peer Partners.
  • Complete internal review with senior faculty mentor.
  • Submit proposal for external review.
  • Submit a completed proposal to their identified funding opportunity.
  • Provide feedback for the Grant Academy program evaluation.

The application consists of 5 brief parts:

  1. Faculty applicant information.
  2. Faculty research and proposed project information.
  3. Proposal submission information (including identified funder, title of funding opportunity and any collaborators).
  4. Senior faculty mentor information.
  5. Required support documents (upload in PDF format only):
    1. Full Faculty Applicant CV. The application must include the proposed faculty participant’s full CV (please do not upload agency biosketches). Please use filename “lastname_f17gacv.pdf”.
    2. One-Page Research Project Abstract.The application must include a one-page abstract of your proposed research project (Arial 11-point font, single-spaced). Please use the filename “lastname_f17gaabstract.pdf”.
    3. Copy of Funding Solicitation. The application must include a copy of the chosen funding mechanism requirements. Please use filename “lastname_f17garfp.pdf”.
    4. Collaborating partner CV(s), if appropriate. The application must include full CV(s) for any proposed faculty collaborators. Please compile all CV(s) into one document with the filename “lastname_f17gacollaboratorcv.pdf”.
    5. Full Senior Faculty Mentor CV. The application must include a full CV for the participant’s senior faculty mentor (please do not upload agency biosketches). Please use filename “lastname_f17gamentorcv.pdf”.
    6. VCU Spring 2017 Grant Academy Attestations and Endorsements Form. A form outlining the terms and conditions of participation in the Grant Academy must be signed by both the proposed faculty participant and the designated faculty mentor/reviewer. It must also be endorsed by the department, by way of the department chair/designee’s signature. Once all signatures are secured, the document must be saved as a PDF and named “lastname_f17gaattest.pdf”.

Application Deadline

Fall 2017 Grant Academy Application Link

Fall 2017 Grant Academy applications are due by 5:00pm on Friday, October 13, 2017. All applications must be submitted online with the full proposed participant CV, one-page research project abstract, the selected funder solicitation, proposed collaborator cv(s) if appropriate, senior faculty mentor cv, and the signed Attestations and Endorsements Form attached. Selected applicants and faculty mentors will be notified of selection decisions via email by October 19, 2017.