The NCATS CTSA Program supports Diversity and Re-Entry Research Supplements to active and eligible UL1 grants through the following funding opportunity announcements (FOAs):
- PA-18-906: Research Supplements to Promote Diversity in Health-Related Research
- PA-18-592: Supplements to Promote Re-Entry into Biomedical and Behavioral Research Careers
Prospective applicants and their mentors are strongly encouraged to contact their respective NCATS program officer and/or the scientific contact listed below during the initial preparation of a supplement application and prior to its submission to discuss the goals and objectives of the supplement application. Critical issues to be discussed with program officer may include, but are not limited to: the research development and mentoring plan activities and objectives, the potential of the candidate to successfully continue his or her research career, and the appropriate supplement duration for the proposed candidate. Critical issues to be discussed with the scientific contacts may include but are not limited to candidate eligibility. General grants management-related FOA questions should be sent to Leslie Le. Grant-specific questions should be directed to the NCATS grants management specialist assigned to that CTSA Program hub. Note diversity and/or re-entry supplement applications to R21 or U01 grants through the CTSA Program Collaborative Innovation Awards (CCIAs) will not be considered for funding.
The NCATS scientific contacts for diversity and re-entry supplement applications to active CTSA Program UL1-Linked Specialized Center Cooperative Agreement grants are:
Xinzhi Zhang, M.D., Ph.D.
Grants Management Contact:
NCATS will accept up to two applications under the diversity supplement and two applications under the re-entry research supplement for review consideration during a fiscal year from any one CTSA Program hub award.
Applications may be submitted at any time up to November 1 each calendar year for consideration for funding in the current fiscal year, which always ends on September 30. Applications received after November 1 will be processed and considered for funding in the following fiscal year. Applications will be evaluated and decisions will be made within two to three months of receipt, but funding decisions can be influenced and delayed by other factors, including the availability of funds. Therefore, potential applicants are advised to consult first with the NCATS program official (PO) assigned to the linked grant and with the relevant NCATS scientific contact prior to submission of a request for a supplement application.
Guidance on Submitting Diversity and Re-Entry Supplements for Applications Eligible under UL1 Awards
It is critical that applicants follow the submission instructions as noted in the relevant FOAs. Please note that NIH is requiring that diversity supplements must be submitted electronically as of Jan. 25, 2018 (see NOT-OD-18-111).
A complete package for a Diversity or Re-Entry Supplement request must include:
- A brief proposal describing the project and training/career experience (not to exceed 10 pages), including:
- Summary or abstract of the funded parent award or project (not to exceed one page). Provide a brief overview about how the candidate will use the CTSA Program resources to complete their research training plan and which resources will be used.
- Research Strategy: Description of the candidate’s proposed research strategy within the scope of the funded parent award or project (not to exceed four pages). Organize the Research Strategy section using the following sections: Research Aims, Significance, Innovation and Approach. Applicants are encouraged to use NIH’s guidance for fellowships or career development applications.
- Mentoring Plan: A mentoring plan for the candidate must include a plan for the candidate to interact with other individuals on the parent grant, to contribute intellectually to the research, and to enhance her/his research skills and knowledge regarding the selected area of biomedical, behavioral, clinical or social sciences science. It also must provide evidence of a focus on the enhancement of the research capability of the underrepresented student, postdoctoral fellow or faculty member and that the research experience is intended to provide opportunities for development as a productive researcher. In addition, it must demonstrate that the CTSA Program UL1 program director(s)/principal investigator(s) are willing to provide appropriate mentorship. The selected mentor(s) should be an active investigator in the area of the proposed research and be committed to both the career development of the candidate and to the direct supervision of the candidate’s research. Candidates are encouraged to identify more than one mentor, (i.e. a mentoring team (or advisory committee)), as this is deemed advantageous for providing expert advice in all aspects of the research career development plan. It is encouraged that the mentoring plan includes the description of the development of an individual development plan for the candidate (see NOT-OD-14-113) (not to exceed three pages). Additionally, a plan for the candidate’s next source of funding is required.
- Mentoring experience of the CTSA Program UL1 PI and selected mentors (not to exceed one page). The mentor, or a member of the mentoring team, should have a successful track record of mentoring individuals at the candidate’s career stage.
- A timeline for the research and career development experiences proposed (not to exceed one page)
- Identification of the Project/Performance Site Location: Include the primary site where the proposed supplement activities will be performed. If a portion of the proposed supplement activities will be performed at any other site(s), identify the locations in the fields provided.
- Identification of Senior/Key Personnel: List the CTSA Program UL1 PD/PI as the first person (regardless of their role on the supplement activities). List the candidate proposed to be added through this supplement, or for whom additional funds are being requested through this supplement.
- Note: Candidates for this supplement support must have an eRA Commons account and the candidate's Commons Username must be entered in the Credential field. Do not list any other senior/key personnel on this form.
- Biographical Sketches: Include a biographical sketch for all personnel that will contribute to the research mentoring (PI/PD, candidate, mentors and collaborators). The biographical sketch should follow NIH guidelines. The personal statement of the candidate's biographical sketch should address:
- Evidence of scientific achievement or interest;
- Any source(s) of current funding; and
- A statement from the candidate outlining her/his research objectives and career goals.
- A Proposed Budget for the Entire Project Period: Applicants should follow the instructions for electronic or paper-based form submissions as indicated in the FOA. Only include funds requested for the additional supplement activities.
- Candidate Eligibility Statement (not to exceed one page): A signed statement from the CTSA Program UL1 PD(s)/PI(s) and an institutional official establishing the eligibility of the candidate for support under this program that must include clearly presented information on citizenship. The strength of this statement will be considered by the NIH administrative review committee along with all other materials provided. The statement must include:
- Information on the nature of the candidate's disability, circumstances, background or characteristics that confer eligibility under this program;
- For Diversity Supplements, a convincing description of how the appointment of this specific candidate will address the issue of diversity within the national scientific workforce; and
- A description of any current or previous Public Health Service (PHS) research grant support the candidate has received, including start and end dates. Include a statement indicating that the candidate has not received any current or previous PHS support, if applicable.
- Other Project Information:
- If applicable, attach PDF documents in the "Other Attachments" field indicating that the proposed research experience was approved by the Institutional Animal Care and Use Committee (IACUC) or human subjects Institutional Review Board (IRB) at the grantee institution. Name the documents "IACUC Documentation.pdf" and/or "IRB Documentation.pdf". Adherence to the NIH policy for including women and minorities in clinical studies must also be ensured, if additional human subjects' involvement is planned for the supplement.
- Home Institution Approval: Under unusual circumstances where the applicant and mentor would be at a site other than the grantee institution, an appropriately signed letter from the institution where the research is to be conducted must also be submitted. The request must be signed by the CTSA Program UL1 PD/PI, the candidate and the appropriate institutional business official.
- Sub-Recipient Approval: If any of the research is to be conducted at an organization other than the grantee institution, an appropriately signed letter from the institution where the research is to be conducted must be submitted. The request must be signed by the candidate, the CTSA Program UL1 and the Subsite PD/PI, and the appropriate institutional business official.
- If the request is for a supplement based on disability, the institution should indicate what, if any, reasonable accommodations the institution has supported or plans to provide along with a full description of how any additional support for accommodation that might be used. The relationship of the proposed accommodation to the proposed project must be described.
Note Regarding Eligibility of Candidates
Supplemental awards under this announcement are limited to citizens or non-citizen nationals of the United States or to individuals who have been lawfully admitted for permanent residence in the United States (i.e., in possession of a Permanent Resident Card, Form I-551). In all cases involving any type of Permanent Residency status, when an application is selected to receive an award, prior to any award being issued, a notarized statement will be required that documents that a licensed notary has seen the candidate's valid Permanent Resident Card or other valid verification from the U.S. Immigration and Naturalization Service of legal admission to the U.S. In all cases where Permanent Residency status is involved, it is the responsibility of the recipient institution to assure the individual remains eligible for the project period of the award.
Review of Applications
As indicated in the respective FOAs, administrative supplements do not receive peer review. Program staff will evaluate supplement applications to determine its overall merit using the review criteria outlined in the FOAs.