Full Text GM-93-001


NIH GUIDE, Volume 21, Number 38, October 23, 1992

RFA:  GM-93-001

P.T. 44, FF

  Biomedical Research Training 
  Biomedical Research, Multidiscipl 

National Institute of General Medical Sciences

Letter of Intent Receipt Date:  November 20, 1992
Application Receipt Date:  January 6, 1993


The National Institute of General Medical Sciences (NIGMS) and the
Office of Minority Programs (OMP), National Institutes of Health
(NIH), solicit applications for two new initiatives directed at
increasing the number of underrepresented minorities entering careers
in biomedical research.  The programs target two different
underrepresented minority student populations: those in colleges and
universities offering only Master of Science (M.S.) degree programs
in biomedically-related sciences and those in two-year junior or
community colleges.  These have been identified as two key transition
points for students considering careers in biomedical research.
These initiatives seek to encourage the development of new and
innovative programs and the expansion of existing programs to improve
the academic competitiveness of underrepresented minority students
and facilitate their transition into the next stage towards careers
in biomedical research.

This Request for Applications (RFA) solicits applications for a
partnership program involving institutions awarding the Master's
degree and universities awarding the Ph.D. degree.  A separate RFA
(GM-93-002) describes a program targeting the transition from
two-year colleges awarding the Associate's degree to institutions
awarding the Baccalaureate degree.


Applications may be submitted by domestic, private and public,
educational institutions and by state and local systems of higher
education.  Institutions that have already received NIGMS Bridge
Program awards (R25) are not eligible to apply for this RFA.

An institution or system of higher education may submit ONLY ONE
application for this RFA.  Institutions that submit applications in
response to this RFA may also apply for RFA GM-92-002; however, a
separate application for each RFA is required.  Institutions
submitting their own applications may participate in programs with
other applicant institutions so long as these interactions are
consistent with institutional resources and the unified institutional
plans described in BOTH applications (see Unified Plan under SPECIAL
REQUIREMENTS).  If an institution is involved in more than one
application, justification should be provided for each.

Programs developed or modified under this initiative must be
specifically designed to target underrepresented minority graduates
majoring in the sciences.  For purposes of this 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, Black Americans, Hispanic Americans, Native
Americans and Pacific Islanders.  The term "science" is used in this
RFA to mean biomedical or health-related science.

Applications must include a partnership between an institution that
offers the M.S. degree as the only postgraduate degree in the
sciences within the participating departments AND has a significant
enrollment of underrepresented minorities, and one research
university providing Ph.D. degree programs in areas relevant to the
biomedical sciences.

All applications must involve a partnership of at least two colleges
or universities, but may involve a consortium of several
institutions, and may include several institutions within a single
state system.  One participating institution or a single system of
higher education must be designated as the grantee institution and
must submit the application.  The grantee institution must name the
program director. Each participating institution must name one
individual to act as program coordinator for that institution.
Proposals must include a description of the collaborative arrangement
with all participating institutions.

Institutions offering both the M.S. and Ph.D. degrees may not use
funds from this program for graduates of their own M.S. degree
programs to enter their own Ph.D. degree programs, even if the
student is moving from one department, school, or college to another.
The program seeks to promote and enhance partnerships BETWEEN

For additional requirements see SPECIAL REQUIREMENTS.



Awards under this RFA will use the institutional education project
(R25) grant.  Responsibility for the planning, direction, and
execution of the proposed project will be solely that of the
applicant.  The total project period for applications submitted in
response to this RFA may not exceed two years.  Requested direct
costs are not to exceed $300,000 for the two-year period.  Indirect
costs will be paid at 8 percent of the direct costs minus appropriate
exclusions.  A detailed budget for each year must be provided.

This RFA is a one-time solicitation.  Future unsolicited competing
applications will not be accepted.

Allowable Costs

If appropriate, the budget request may be divided into two phases:  a
planning phase with its attendant budget for the development of the
partnership program; and an implementation phase with its attendant
budget.  The planning phase costs should be minimal and not exceed a
period of one year.  Faculty release time for planning and
implementation of the program and faculty travel related to program
development may be requested.

The implementation phase may include the costs of administering and
coordinating the partnership programs within and between each of the
participants.  Although compensation for student participation in
research experiences may be requested, stipends, housing, tuition,
and fees are not allowable costs under this program.  However,
salary/wages, tuition remission and other forms of compensation paid
in lieu of wages to students performing necessary work are allowable
provided there is an employer-employee relationship between the
student and the institution, the total compensation is reasonable for
the work performed, and it is the institution's practice to provide
compensation for all students in similar circumstances, regardless of
the source of support for the activity.  Requests for equipment,
supplies, travel, and other expenses should be limited to those
necessary for program development and should be carefully and
specifically justified.


The funds for this program are contingent on the final level of the
Fiscal Year 1993 appropriations to the OMP.  An estimated $7 million
will be available in Fiscal Year 1993 for supporting awards made in
response to RFA GM-92-001 and RFA GM-92-002.  NIH staff anticipate
making a combined total of 20 to 40 two-year awards for both RFAs
using multi-year funding, if NIH receives sufficient numbers of
highly meritorious applications and sufficient funds for this



This program seeks to promote the initiation and development of new
transitional programs, as well as the expansion and enhancement of
existing programs between those institutions with departments
offering only the M.S. degree as the post-graduate academic degree in
the sciences, which have significant enrollments of underrepresented
minority students, and research universities with Ph.D. degree
programs.  The objective is to facilitate the transition of
underrepresented minority students into Ph.D. programs after
obtaining the M.S. degree.  Students receiving the M.S. degree in one
field of science may pursue the Ph.D. in a different area so long as
the Ph.D. is in a discipline related to the biomedical sciences.

Collaborative agreements should take the form that best fits the
needs and situations of the institutions involved.  The challenge for
the project director, with the help of the participating partners, is
to design a new partnership program, or enhance an existing program,
that will focus attention and adequate resources to the M.S.
degree-granting institutions to enhance the academic competitiveness
of their degree programs and graduates in the sciences.

Additional Information

The "bridge" programs must be designed with special attention to the
needs and special requirements of the underrepresented minority
student body.  They may include, but are not limited to, the
following elements:

o  providing research opportunities for M.S. students at the Ph.D.
institution or in private industrial laboratories (students may
receive compensation for these activities);

o  establishing a mentoring program for M.S. students with faculty at
the Ph.D. institution;

o  strengthening the research capability of the M.S.-granting college
(e.g., by faculty research collaborations, joint seminar programs,

o  enhancing the curriculum of the M.S. institution (special courses,
seminars, etc.);

o  enabling and encouraging students from either institution to take
classes at the other institution;

o  guaranteeing acceptance into the participating Ph.D. program(s)
for students completing the M.S. program;

o  academic counseling for M.S. students, with a particular focus on
encouraging students to pursue research careers in the biomedical

It is an expectation of NIGMS and OMP that students who enter Ph.D.
programs as a result of this enhancement program will receive
institutional support, if needed, while progressing satisfactorily in
Ph.D. research training programs.  Applicants should describe the
type(s) of institutional support that would be available to such


Applicants should describe fully the proposed transition program and
explain how its design will meet the goals of this initiative.
Applicants with an existing transition program should describe that
program and explain how it would be altered to meet the goals of this

Unified Plan

To avoid duplication of effort each institution should develop a
unified plan (which may include the biomedically relevant physical,
natural and/or behavioral sciences) to facilitate the transfer of its
students from the M.S. degree program to the Ph.D. degree program at
another institution.  Applicants should describe how this proposal
fits in with the institution's overall transition plan.

Consortium Agreements

Each applicant institution should delineate appropriate agreements
and consortium arrangements with other institutions consistent with
its own unified institutional plan.  The following statement,
accompanied by signatures of the appropriate administrative officials
from EACH of the collaborating institutions, must be included as part
of the application:


In addition, letters, signed by the appropriate institutional
official and program coordinator, acknowledging participation in the
program are required from each participating institution.

Reporting Requirements

A progress report will be required at the end of the planning phase
(if any) or at the end of the first year, whichever is shorter.  A
final report will be required 90 days after the termination date of
the award and must include a Statement of Appointment Form (form
2271) for each student participant as well as a report of the
benefits to students of the partnership program.

Student Population and Career Tracking

The nature and extent of underrepresented minority student
participation must be thoroughly delineated.  The applicant should
also describe the M.S. degree-granting institution's success in
training its students in the sciences, including information on the
numbers of minority students receiving the M.S. degree and data on
subsequent careers or education of their graduates.

The applicant should describe a system by which it would monitor and
track the students participating in this program, including their
future careers, in order to evaluate the success of the program.

Other Training Programs

Colleges with any NIH funding such as the Minority Access to Research
Careers (MARC), Minority Biomedical Research Support Program (MBRS),
National Research Service Award (NRSA) training grants, and/or
project grants, or other sources of funds such as National Science
Foundation grants or Howard Hughes grants, should define the
relationship between those programs and this transition program.
They should delineate how this enhancement program will influence
their partnerships with the other participants and the manner in
which underrepresented minority students in the transition program
will interact with these other sources of support.


Prospective applicants are requested to submit, by November 20, 1992,
a letter of intent that includes a descriptive title of the proposed
plan, the name, address, and telephone number of the program
director, the identities of other key personnel and participating
institutions, and the number and title of the RFA.  Although a letter
of intent is not required, is not binding, and does not enter into
the review of subsequent applications, the information that it
contains is helpful in planning for the review of applications.  It
allows NIH staff to estimate the potential review workload and to
avoid conflict of interest in the review.

The letter of intent is to be sent to:

Americo Rivera, Jr., Ph.D.
National Institute of General Medical Sciences
Westwood Building, Room 909
Bethesda, MD  20892
Telephone:  (301) 496-7001
FAX:  (301) 402-0019


The research grant application form PHS 398 (rev. 9/91) is to be used
in applying for these grants.  These forms are available at most
institutional business offices; from the Office of Grants Inquiries,
Division of Research Grants, National Institutes of Health, 5333
Westbard Avenue, Room 449, Bethesda, MD 20892, telephone (301)
496-7441; and from the NIGMS program administrator named below.

The RFA label in the PHS 398 application form must be affixed to the
bottom of the face page of the application.  Failure to use this
label could result in delayed processing of the application such that
it may not reach the review committee in time for review.  In
addition, the RFA number and title must be typed on line 2A of the
face page form, the "YES" box must be marked, and "R25" typed in 2B.

Submit a signed, typewritten original of the application, including
the Checklist, and three photocopies of the signed application in one
package to:

Division of Research Grants
National Institutes of Health
Westwood Building, Room 240
Bethesda, MD  20892**

At the time of submission, two additional copies of the application
must also be sent to Dr. Americo Rivera, Jr. at the address given

Applications must be received by January 6, 1993.  Applications
arriving after that date will be returned to the applicant.


Upon receipt, applications will be administratively reviewed by NIH
staff.  Incomplete and/or unresponsive applications will be returned
to the applicant without further consideration.  Those applications
that are complete and responsive will be evaluated 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

o  qualifications and experience of the Principal Investigator and
staff to carry out the proposed program;

o  appropriateness of the plans to develop the transition program to
meet the goals of the solicitation;

o  appropriateness of the existing program, if appropriate, and of
plans to modify that program;

o  availability of significant numbers of underrepresented minority
students in the participating science department(s) who are
interested in studying further in biomedical and health-related

o  evidence of underrepresented minority students progressing to
higher education in the sciences;

o  budget and cost-effectiveness of the project including
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 institutional commitment, for each institution, and
strength of the collaborative efforts between institutions to foster
professional development of underrepresented minority faculty and to
train under-represented minority students in the biomedical sciences;

o  appropriateness of the administrative plan for managing the
proposed program, including adequacy of space and other institutional

o  appropriateness of the system to track future course of program


The anticipated date of award is September 30, 1993.  Award decisions
will be based on the technical merit of the applications, the
geographical distribution of the awardee institutions, and diversity
of underrepresented minority student participants.  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.


Written and telephone inquiries concerning this RFA are encouraged.
The opportunity to clarify any issues or questions from potential
applicants is welcome.

Direct inquiries regarding programmatic issues to:

Americo Rivera, Jr., Ph.D.
National Institute of General Medical Sciences
Westwood Building, Room 909
5333 Westbard Avenue
Bethesda, MD  20892
Telephone:  (301) 496-7001

Direct inquiries regarding fiscal matters to:

Ms Toni Holland
Supervisory Grants Management Specialist
National Institute of General Medical Sciences
Westwood Building, Room 953
5333 Westbard Avenue
Bethesda, MD  20892
Telephone:  (301) 496-7897


Awards are made under authorization of the Public Health Service Act,
Title IV, Part A (Public Law 78-410, as amended, 42 USC 241 and 284)
and administered under PHS grants policies and Federal Regulations 45
CFR Part 74 or 45 CFR Part 92.  This program is not subject to the
intergovernmental review requirements of Executive Order 12372 or
Health Systems Agency review.


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