Full Text PAR-97-013
 
INITIATIVE FOR MINORITY STUDENT DEVELOPMENT
 
NIH GUIDE, Volume 25, Number 41, November 29, 1996
 
PA NUMBER:  PAR-97-013
 
P.T. 34

Keywords: 
  Biomedical Research, Multidiscipl 
  Biomedical Research Training 

 
National Institute of General Medical Sciences
 
Application Receipt Date:  February 1
 
PURPOSE
 
The National Institute of General Medical Sciences (NIGMS)
reannounces an initiative directed toward increasing the number of
underrepresented minorities entering careers in biomedical research.
This initiative seeks to encourage the development and/or expansion
of innovative programs to improve the academic and research
competitiveness of underrepresented minority students at the
undergraduate, graduate, and postdoctoral levels and to facilitate
their progress toward careers in biomedical research. Programs
developed under this initiative must be specifically designed to
target underrepresented minority students majoring in the biomedical
sciences or in medical, dental, or veterinary training who are
interested in pursuing research careers.  For the purposes of this
program announcement, underrepresented minority students are
individuals belonging to a particular ethnic or racial group that has
been determined by the grantee institution to be underrepresented in
biomedical or behavioral research.  Nationally, individuals who have
been found to be underrepresented in biomedical or behavioral
research include, but are not limited to, United States citizens who
are African Americans, Hispanic Americans, Native Americans and
Natives of the U.S. Pacific Islands.  The term "science" is used in
this program announcement to mean the natural, physical, and
behavioral sciences and mathematics relevant to biomedical research.
 
ELIGIBILITY
 
Applications may be submitted by domestic private and public,
educational institutions.  The application may be directed toward the
development of underrepresented minority scientists who are in any
phase of their career development, from the undergraduate level
through the Ph.D.  Applications proposing to develop the competitive
research skills of recent clinical doctorates are also eligible. An
applicant institution may submit only one application for this
program announcement.  This initiative expands on and replaces the
MBRS Associate Investigator (AI) Institution category of support.
Currently funded AI institutions are encouraged to apply for the
present initiative with a start date to coincide with the end of
their current project period. Institutions holding active MBRS
regular research (S06) or undergraduate (S14) awards are not
eligible.
 
MECHANISM OF SUPPORT
 
Awards under this program will use the institutional education
project (R25) grant.  Responsibility for the planning, direction,
execution, and tracking for evaluation of the proposed project will
be solely that of the applicant.  The total project period for an
application submitted in response to this program announcement may
not exceed four years and is renewable.  Requested direct costs are
not to exceed $500,000 a year for the four-year period.  Indirect
costs will be paid at 8% of the direct costs, minus appropriate
exclusions.  A budget for each year must be provided.
 
Allowable Costs
 
The budget request may include the reasonable costs of administering,
coordinating, and evaluating the program.  Requests for equipment,
supplies, travel, and other expenses for program operation should be
carefully and specifically justified. Student remuneration through
salary/wages and/or other forms of compensation paid in lieu of wages
for participation in research experiences may be requested, provided
the following conditions are met:
 
o  the student is performing necessary work,
 
o  there is an employer-employee relationship between the student and
the institution,
 
o  the total compensation is reasonable for the work performed, and
 
o  it is the institution's practice to provide compensation for all
students in similar circumstances, regardless of the source of
support for the activity.
 
Tuition remission is allowable for graduate students only and is
limited to the current NIH guidelines for graduate student
remuneration.
 
It is an expectation of NIGMS that students who are enrolled in a
Ph.D. program as a result of this program announcement will not be
excluded from support from other non-federal sources, if needed,
while making satisfactory progress toward the Ph.D degree.  The
student may make use of Federal educational loan funds and assistance
under the Veterans Readjustment Benefits Act (G.I. Bill), or may
receive funds from a Pell Grant, based on financial need.  Such funds
are not considered supplementation  or compensation.
 
In summary, allowable costs include, but are not limited to: graduate
student tuition remission, supplies, equipment, travel, other
expenses, as well as salary/wages and fringe benefits for students
and faculty.
 
Unallowable Costs
 
Undergraduate tuition, housing, food, or recruitment expenses of any
kind are not allowable costs under this program.  Release time solely
for faculty mentoring is not allowable.  Support for faculty research
is not allowable, since faculty mentors in competitive programs are
expected to have their own research support and an active research
program capable of supporting the research of MBRS students.
 
RESEARCH OBJECTIVES
 
Background
 
As of 1992, underrepresented minorities constituted only 4.5 percent
of the postdoctoral fellows in the life sciences and less than 2.7
percent of the principal investigators of NIH research grants.  In
addition, the number of underrepresented minority applicants for
research grants and training positions is very low.  In the NIH
Revitalization Act of 1993, NIH was encouraged to increase the number
of underrepresented minorities participating in biomedical and
behavioral research.  In response to the Act, this program
announcement will establish an opportunity for universities and other
eligible institutions that are involved in biomedical research and
training to target qualified underrepresented minorities at various
stages in their education and move them along the path to competitive
research careers.
 
The objective of this program announcement is to significantly
increase the number of underrepresented minority students entering
competitive careers in biomedical research by promoting the
initiation and development of new programs, as well as the expansion
and enhancement of existing programs, to motivate and foster the
development of underrepresented minority students in biomedical
research careers.
 
NIGMS recognizes the heterogeneity in institutional settings and
institutional missions.  Therefore, the emphasis of this initiative
will be on the institution's program, as defined by its own goals and
specific measurable objectives, to make a substantial contribution to
ameliorating the underrepresentation of minority groups in biomedical
research.  Some institutions may have the greatest opportunity for
impact by motivating undergraduate students.  Other institutions may
be poised for success in developing graduate students.  Still others
may wish to motivate and develop the research skills of students in,
or recently graduated from, medical schools or other biomedically
relevant professional schools.
 
Additional Information
 
Institutional programs must be designed with special attention to the
needs and special requirements of underrepresented minority students
who are pursuing biomedical research careers.  For example, they may
include, but are not limited to, the following:
 
o  providing research opportunities for undergraduate, graduate,
medical, or post-clinical doctoral students at the institution
(students may receive compensation for these activities);
 
o  while routine research support is not allowable, funds may be
provided for strengthening the research capabilities of faculty who
are uniquely successful in the development of underrepresented
minority students or who are critical to the development of an
environment supportive of minority students;
 
o  research-oriented technical training courses or workshops for
students;
 
o  activities to improve technical skills of students such as
writing;
 
o  student travel for presentation of research at scientific
meetings; and
 
o  mentoring activities.
 
Professional degree-granting institutions need to describe new
programs or modifications and/or additions to their existing programs
that would encourage and facilitate minority students to enter
research careers.  Request for support of existing efforts and
programs related to the objectives of this announcement must be well
justified.
 
APPLICATION PROCEDURES
 
The research grant application form PHS 398 (rev. 5/95) is to be used
in applying for these grants.  Applications kits are available at
most institutional offices of sponsored research and may be obtained
from the Grants Information Office, Office of Extramural Outreach and
Information Resources, National Institutes of Health, 6701 Rockledge
Drive, MSC 7910, Bethesda, MD 20892-7910, telephone 301/435-0714,
email:  ASKNIH@odrockm1.od.nih.gov; and from the NIGMS program
director listed under INQUIRIES.  The title and number of the program
announcement must be typed in Section 2 on the face page of the
application.
 
Submit a signed, typewritten original of the application, including
the Checklist, and three legible copies of the signed application in
one package to:
 
DIVISION OF RESEARCH GRANTS
NATIONAL INSTITUTES OF HEALTH
6701 ROCKLEDGE DRIVE, ROOM 1040 - MSC 7710
BETHESDA, MD  20872-7710
BETHESDA, MD  20817 (for express/courier service)
 
At the time of submission, two additional copies of the application
must also be sent to Dr. Marquez at the address listed under
INQUIRIES.
 
Application receipt date is February 1.
 
SPECIAL REQUIREMENTS
 
Applicants should describe their proposed program in detail.  They
should explain how the program will meet their institutional goals
and specific measurable objectives and how meeting these
institutional goals will fulfill the objectives of this program
announcement.  Applicants should describe:
 
o  the criteria to be used in the selection of, and steps taken to
ensure the retention of, the student participants for this program;
 
o  the criteria for selecting participating faculty;
 
o  the methods and facilities available for tracking student
participants and their career outcomes; and
 
o  the criteria to be used for program evaluation.  In this context,
the applicant should provide institutional data for the previous five
years on underrepresented minority student training or participation
in biomedical research.  This will serve as a baseline for the
specific measurable objectives proposed (See Student Population and
Career Tracking section below).
 
Other Training Programs
 
Applicants should describe the type(s) of support available to
underrepresented minority students at their institutions.
Applications from academic institutions with funding for student
development programs such as, but not limited to, National Research
Service Award (NRSA) training grants (e.g., NIH pre- and
post-doctoral T32 grants or MARC T34 grants), NIH minority
supplements, National Science Foundation grants or Howard Hughes
Medical Institute grants, should define the relationship between
those programs and a program responding to this program announcement.
 
Reporting Requirements
 
An annual progress report will be required.  A final report will be
required 90 days after the termination date of the award and must
include information for each student participant and the benefits
derived from the program.
 
Student Population and Career Tracking
 
The nature and extent of underrepresented minority student
participation must be thoroughly delineated.  The applicant should
describe the institution's success in training its students from
underrepresented minority groups in the sciences, including
information on the number of minority students enrolled and receiving
baccalaureate, master's, or Ph.D. degrees and data on the subsequent
careers or education of the institutions underrepresented minority
graduates.
 
In order to evaluate the success of the program, applicants should
describe the systems by which they would monitor and track the
student participants in their programs, including the careers
students choose after graduation.  Applicants should maintain data to
be able to demonstrate the benefits of their programs on
matriculation, retention and graduation rates.  These data should be
compared to those of non-minority students and to those of minority
students at their institutions from the previous five years.
 
Key Personnel
 
The program director is the individual designated on the application
as the principal investigator and is responsible for the overall
execution of the program. Unless otherwise stated in the application,
the program director will have direct responsibility for all
projects/activities (e.g., mentoring activities, individual research
or pilot projects, curriculum development), including the Student
Population and Career Tracking project.  The names and qualifications
of the program director, the directors of individual projects within
the program (where appropriate), and any other key personnel, shall
be listed in the application under Key Personnel and in the
Biographical Sketch.
 
REVIEW CONSIDERATIONS
 
Upon receipt, applications will be administratively reviewed by NIH
staff.  Incomplete and/or unresponsive applications will be returned
to the applicant without further consideration.  Applications that
are complete and responsive will be evaluated by the NIGMS in
accordance with the criteria stated below for scientific and
technical merit by appropriate peer review groups.  The second level
of review will be provided by the National Advisory General Medical
Sciences Council.
 
Review criteria
 
Proposed Education Plans:
 
o  the difference the program will make as defined by the stated
goals and specific measurable objectives relative to the current
status quo (previous five years);
 
o  the degree to which the program's plan may be expected to meet the
goals of this solicitation, as well as the goals and specific
measurable objectives of the applicant institution;
 
o  the budget and cost-effectiveness of the program, including its
appropriateness to the scope of the program, benefit to the students,
number of students involved, and responsible and prudent senior
personnel costs;
 
o  evidence of a programmatic quality of the projects/activities
proposed as distinct from a potential collection of minority
supplements to existing research grants; and
 
o  the appropriateness of the applicant's plan for the evaluation of
the impact of the program, including a system to track the future
course of program participants.
 
Institutional Setting and Personnel:
 
o  the availability of significant numbers of underrepresented
minority students in the participating science department(s) who are
interested in developing their research careers in biomedical and
health-related fields;
 
o  the qualifications and experience of the Principal Investigator,
faculty and staff to carry out the proposed program;
 
o  evidence of institutional commitment, and strength of the efforts
of the institution, to foster the professional development of
underrepresented minority faculty;
 
o  evidence of institutional commitment, and strength of the efforts
of the institution, to foster the training of underrepresented
minority students in the biomedical sciences;
 
o  the past training record of both program and designated
preceptors, as determined by the success of former trainees in
establishing independent and productive research careers, which may
include non-underrepresented minority students;
 
o  the caliber of the proposed preceptors as researchers, including
their successful competition for research support.
 
AWARD CRITERIA
 
Award decisions will be based on the technical merit of the
applications, the diversity of the underrepresented minority student
participants within the grant portfolio of NIGMS, and the
geographical distribution of the awardee institutions.  Awards can be
made only to institutions with financial management systems and
management capabilities that are acceptable under PHS policy.  Awards
will be administered under the PHS Grants Policy Statement.
 
INQUIRIES
 
Written and telephone inquiries concerning this announcement are
strongly encouraged.  The opportunity to clarify any issues or
questions from potential applicants is welcome.
 
Direct inquiries regarding programmatic issues to the program
director:
 
Ernest D. Marquez, Ph.D.
Division of Minority Opportunities in Research
National Institute of General Medical Sciences
45 Center Drive, Room 2AS.37 MSC 6200
Bethesda, MD  20892-6200
Telephone:  (301) 594-3900
FAX:  (301) 480-2753
Email:  marqueze@gm1.nigms.nih.gov
 
Direct inquiries regarding fiscal matters to:
 
Ms. Antoinette Holland
National Institute of General Medical Sciences
45 Center Drive, Room 2AN.50B MSC 6200
Bethesda, MD  20892-6200
Telephone:  (301) 594-5132
FAX:  (301) 480-3423
Email:  hollanda@gm1.nigms.nih.gov
 
AUTHORITY AND REGULATIONS
 
Awards are authorized by Sections 301 and 405 of the Public Health
Service Act, as amended, and administered under PHS grants policies
and the code of Federal Regulations 45 CFR Part 74, 45 CFR Part 92
and 42 CFR Part 52.  This program is not subject to the
intergovernmental review requirements of Executive Order 12372 or
Health Systems Agency review.
 
The PHS strongly encourages all grant and contract recipients to
provide a smoke-free workplace and promote the non-use of all tobacco
products.  In addition, Public Law 103-227, the Pro-Children Act of
1994, prohibits smoking in certain facilities (or in some cases, any
portion of a facility) in which regular or routine education,
library, day care, health care or early childhood development
services are provided to children.  This is consistent with the PHS
mission to protect and advance the physical and mental health of the
American people.
 
.

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