ORAU Information: Member Only Opportunities and Announcements

University Partnerships Office (UPO) Annual Program Opportunities and Deadlines

One of the benefits of membership in the ORAU University Consortium is funding opportunities available only to member universities.  The following is a list of UPO’s FY 2018 program/event opportunities and deadlines.  All programs are subject to available funding and expect to be continued for future years. Questions on any of these programs should be addressed to university.partnerships@orau.org.

73rd Annual Meeting of the ORAU Council of Sponsoring Institutions – Less Than 2 Weeks to Register


Please register to attend the 2018 Annual Meeting of the Council of Sponsoring Institutions that will be held Tuesday, March 6th through Thursday, March 8th, 2018.  ORAU’s 73rd Annual Meeting of the Council of Sponsoring Institutions will be focused on “Public Health Security and Biological Threats.” The meeting will focus on the issues related to preparedness for bioterrorism and other major public health threats.  Your participation will provide an opportunity for you and your colleagues to discuss key science and technology challenges and opportunities. Experts and leaders from academia and federal agencies will share their views on the effective strategies for continued progress in areas of national importance for global health security.

During this year’s breaks, we will have opportunities where ORAU’s subject matter experts will be leading table topic discussions.  Specific topics will be indicated by signs on the tables and ORAU subject matter experts will be wearing green ribbons with the title “Program Subject Matter Expert.”  We encourage all speakers and attendees to gather in groups during the breaks to discuss common research interests and opportunities.  The topical areas include:

  • Data Analytics/Bioinformatics
  • Emergency Preparedness & Countermeasures
  • Radiation Exposure/Assessment
  • Health Communication Tools
  • Epidemiology/Risk Assessment
  • Scientific Assessment & Evaluation
  • STEM Education Faculty & Student Opportunities

Visit the 73rd Annual Meeting of the Council of Sponsoring Institutions official website to view the agenda and featured speakers as well as complete your registration. Please designate a proxy to attend if you are unable to attend.  Due to security requirements, registration for non-US Citizens closes on February 6, 2018 and registration for US Citizens closes on February 13, 2018.  If you have any questions send an email to university.partnerships@orau.org.

ORAU-Directed Research and Development Program:  Phase 2 Deadline March 26, 2018

The deadline for the ORAU-Directed Research and Development (ODRD) Program Phase 2 joint ORAU/university proposal submissions is March 26, 2018.  As a reminder, ODRD projects are joint collaborations consisting of innovative research-based approaches/solutions that fall within the intersection of ORAU’s core capabilities and our member universities research interests.

Universities may propose ODRD Concepts for potential collaboration with an ORAU subject matter expert (SME).  University ODRD concepts are vetted by each school’s ORAU Councilor and submitted on the Value Through Partnerships External SharePoint Site:    https://upo.orau.org/Partners/default.aspx.  Research concepts need to be submitted as early as possible to provide sufficient time to develop the joint proposals.

After matching interests, Phase 1 and Phase 2 applications are submitted by the ORAU SME, on behalf of the collaboration team.  Phase 1 participation is not a requirement for Phase 2.  Phase 1 travel grants are considered on an on-going basis.

For additional program information, please visit the ODRD Program page on the ORAU website:   http://www.orau.org/university-partnerships/members-only/odrd/default.aspx

FDP Faculty Workload Survey – 2018

Your faculty and research staff will soon have an opportunity to provide input that may help streamline the administrative workload associated with federally-funded research.

The Federal Demonstration Partnership (FDP; thefdp.org), a cooperative initiative hosted by the National Academies, is conducting a national survey of federally-funded principal investigators (PIs) to explore the impact of federal regulations on the time spent pursuing active research.  Michigan Techis an active member of FDP, and we have provided the FDP with a list of our PIs on federal grants and contracts during the last complete academic year. Faculty and staff who have been PIs may be contacted and asked to complete the web-based FDP Faculty Workload Survey.

Participation in the study is voluntary, but the more researchers that participate, the stronger the data. Please encourage your folks to participate – if we have enough participants we will be able to get a report of our institutional responses.  This input will help FDP work more effectively with federal agencies, and institutions conducting research to increase the efficiency of research administration, potentially reducing the workload of PIs.

The FDP is comprised of 10 federal agencies and 154 institutional recipients of federal funds working together to reduce the administrative burdens associated with research grants and contracts. The FDP is a unique forum for individuals from universities and nonprofits to work collaboratively with federal agency officials to improve the national research enterprise. The current study is a follow-up to the FDP 2005 and 2012 Faculty Workload Surveys, which provided estimates of the proportion of federally-funded research time spent on administrative workload compared to active research. These estimates have been used by institutions, national groups, federal agencies, and even lawmakers to try to target and decrease unnecessary research-related administrative burden. The 2018 Faculty Workload Survey will update these data to determine whether the workload has changed, and will extend the earlier survey findings by exploring variables associated with administrative workload, as well as priorities for change. The results of this study will be a primary source for setting FDP priorities and developing initiatives to improve the research process.

Please ask your folks to be on the lookout for an email message in the first two weeks of February (Feb 5 – 16, 2018) inviting them to participate in the FDP Faculty Workload Survey. We hope that they will choose to take the 15-30 minutes necessary to complete the survey and contribute to this national effort to streamline administrative processes in federally-funded research.

Please note that the IRB that reviewed and approved this survey has examined the survey methodology and survey instruments to ensure that all responses will be handled in a confidential manner, by a qualified survey company. The names of the participants will not be known to their university/institution or to the FDP. The survey results will be published as aggregate data; no individual names will be associated with any responses. We hope these protections will allow you to respond candidly to the questions posed in the survey. If anyone has any questions about the survey, please feel free to contact Dave Reed (ddreed@mtu.edu), Larry Sutter (llsutter@mtu.edu), or Jason Carter (jcarter@mtu.edu).

Thank you,

Dave Reed (Administrative representative)

Larry Sutter (Faculty representative)

Jason Carter (Faculty representative)


 Solicitation: NSF 18-513
Due Date: January 01, 2019
Institutional Limit: See Limit Summary
Limit Summary:  Three (3) as described below. Potential PIs are advised to contact their institutional office of research regarding processes used to select proposals for submission.The MRI program requires that an MRI-eligible organization may, as a performing organization, submit or be included as a significantly funded[3] subawardee in no more than three MRI proposals. Beginning with this competition, each performing organization is now limited to a maximum of three proposals in revised “Tracks” as defined below, with no more than two submissions in Track 1 and no more than one submission in Track 2. Any MRI proposal may request support for either the acquisition or development of a research instrument. Within their submission limit, NSF strongly encourages organizations to submit proposals for innovative development projects.

Any MRI proposal may request support for either the acquisition or development of a research instrument.

  • Track 1: Track 1 MRI proposals are those that request funds from NSF greater than or equal to $100,0001 and less than $1,000,000.
  • Track 2: Track 2 MRI proposals are those that request funds from NSF greater than or equal to $1,000,000 up to and including $4,000,000.

Note: The 30% cost-sharing requirement applies to only the portion of the total project cost budgeted to non-exempt organizations, including those participating through subawards. When required, cost-sharing must be precisely 30%. Cost sharing is required for Ph.D.-granting institutions of higher education and for non-degree-granting organizations. Non-Ph.D.-granting institutions of higher education are exempt from cost-sharing and cannot provide it. National Science Board policy is that voluntary committed cost sharing is prohibited. See section V.B. for specific information on cost-sharing calculations and the solicitation text for definitions of organizational types used for the MRI program.

[3]An unfunded collaboration does not count against the submission limit. Inclusion as a funded subawardee on a development proposal at a level in excess of 20% of the total budget requested from NSF, or as a funded subawardee, when allowed, on any acquisition proposal, will be counted against an organization’s proposal submission limit. Separately submitted linked collaborative proposals count against the submission limit of each of the submitting organizations. However, if a subaward to an organization in a development proposal is 20% or less of the proposal’s total budget request from NSF, the subawardee’s submission limit will not be affected. For subawards within a linked collaborative proposal, the 20% threshold applies to the budget request from NSF in the proposal containing the subaward(s), not to the combined budget request from NSF for the collaborative project.


 Full Proposal Deadline Date: February 28, 2018
Program Guidelines: NSF 18-520  Communities in the United States (US) and around the world are entering a new era of transformation in which residents and their surrounding environments are increasingly connected through rapidly-changing intelligent technologies. This transformation offers great promise for improved wellbeing and prosperity, but poses significant challenges at the complex intersection of technology and society. The goal of the NSF Smart and Connected Communities (S&CC) program solicitation is to …   More at https://www.nsf.gov/funding/pgm_summ.jsp?pims_id=505364&WT.mc_id=USNSF_39&WT.mc_ev=click

QPR training: Got 30 minutes? Save a life.

As someone in an instructional role at Michigan Tech, I want to make sure you are aware of an excellent suicide-prevention resource called QPR  that recently became available to all Michigan Tech faculty, staff and students.  I apologize if this is a duplication for some of you.    I know you are very busy – but this 30 minute training will help you recognize suicidal behavior and provide the right kind of help.  It’s very difficult to place a value on this,  not only in your role as an instructor, but in your family and other social groups as well.  Thanks for considering this!

To access the QPR Course:
  1. This webpage:  http://www.qprtraining.com/setup.php
  2. This organizational code:  MTU
Why is Michigan Tech encouraging this training:
In the Fall of 2016 the American College Health Assessment was sent out to all Michigan Tech students, and the response was that they want to receive more information on how they can help others in need (61.7%, N=1588). The QPR (Question, Persuade, Refer) course will give students, faculty, and staff the knowledge and skills needed to intervene in a mental health emergency, and possibly prevent a mental health emergency from happening.
What should you expect from the training:
Similar to the structure of a basic CPR course, QPR is a course designed around suicide education and awareness, and gives individuals the skills and tools they need to feel comfortable to identify, have a plan, and get help for someone in need.  Michigan Tech has a goal of educating all of our student leaders, faculty, and staff that have daily contact with the students this fall (2017) through the QPR course.  The course will take about 30 minutes to complete, and is presented through a video-based online platform. 

NASA Postdoctoral Fellowship


The NASA Postdoctoral Program offers U.S. and international scientists the opportunity to advance their research while contributing to NASA’s scientific goals. The NPP supports fundamental science; explores the undiscovered; promotes intellectual growth; and encourages scientific connections. Selected by a competitive peer-review process, NPP Fellows complete one- to three-year Fellowship appointments that advance NASA’s missions in earth science, heliophysics, planetary science, astrophysics, space bioscience, aeronautics and engineering, human exploration and space operations, and astrobiology.

Requirements: Applicants must have a Ph.D. or equivalent degree in hand before beginning the fellowship, but may apply while completing the degree requirements. U.S. citizens, Lawful Permanent Residents, and foreign nationals eligible for J-1 status as a Research Scholar, may apply.

Benefits: Stipends start at $60,000 per year, with supplements for high cost-of-living areas and for certain academic specialties. Financial assistance is available for relocation as well as subsidized health insurance, and $10,000 per year is provided for professional and programmatic travel.

Apply: Applications are accepted three times each year:
• March 1
• July 1
• November 1

Contact:  https://npp.usra.edu/   |   Email: npphelp@usra.edu

Preventing and Addressing Sexual Misconduct

Broadcasting this on all channels can only help…

Dear members of the Michigan Tech Community,

As a country, we are at a watershed moment. Over the past few months, survivors of sexual assault and harassment have come forward in an unprecedented manner to bravely share their painful and heartbreaking stories. As you are likely well aware, many of these survivors were assaulted and harassed in a university setting.

At Michigan Tech, we are committed to fostering and providing an equitable, diverse, and inclusive community—a community in which all members feel safe, welcomed, respected, and treated with dignity. But saying we are committed is not enough—it’s on us to maintain a safe environment. The University’s policies expressly prohibit sex- and gender-based discrimination, harassment, and sexual violence. Sexual misconduct of any kind is not and will not be tolerated. We believe in a culture of belief—a culture that compels investigation and action.

As part of maintaining a safe environment, Michigan Tech continues to educate students, faculty, and staff about sexual misconduct, and works with the University and surrounding community to offer as great a variety of services as possible. Information on training, policies and procedures, how to report, resources, and assistance can be found on the Title IX webpage.

You can also contact Kirsti Arko, Title IX coordinator, Administration Building 306, 906-487-3310, titleix@mtu.edu, or Public Safety and Police Services, 206 MacInnes Drive, 906-487-2216. Counseling services are available to all students, and confidential assistance is available for all faculty and staff through Michigan Tech’s Employee Assistance Program.

We all must work together to foster and maintain an environment in which every member of our Michigan Tech community is free from the threat of sexual violence. I hope you will join me.

Glenn D. Mroz

President, Michigan Technological University

Entrepreneurs: Conquer Accelerator Apps Open for Cohort 2018

The hunt for Cohort 2018 has begun! We’ve opened applications for Season 3 of Conquer Accelerator. Any interested entrepreneurs have until March 30th, 2018 to submit their application here.
Need a refresh on what the program is? Conquer is a 10-week experience starting on June 1st, 2018 and ending on August 10th, 2018. As a member of the Cohort, teams receive
 | $20,000 in funding
A creative working space in The Hatch
 | 40+ mentors
| Resources to grow their startup
Have questions? Sure you do, and we want to hear them. 
Anything you want to know about the application, selection process, experience, or whatever else may cross your mind: Tom Stewart, Conquer’s Program Manager, will be answering all questions in a video on Wednesday, February 14th.
Post your questions here, before Saturday, February 10th. Four days later, we’ll post Tom’s answers in a video on Facebook and Twitter.

Season 3 is rapidly approaching and we’ll anxiously await your application to participate in Conquer’s 2018 Cohort!

            – The Conquer Team  

Make Haste! Apply to the 2018 Rice Business Plan Competition

Submit your application to the
Rice Business Plan Competition today!
Compete to join the world’s biggest business plan competition, where collegiate entrepreneurs get real-world experience in pitching their startups to investors, integrating with the entrepreneurial ecosystem, enhancing their startup strategy, connecting with mentors, and learning what it takes to launch a successful business.
Applications due February 9, 2018
by 5:00 PM CST
Visit www.rbpc.rice.edu for details

NIH Update: NIH inclusion policies; clinical trials FAQs; 2018 NIH regional seminar

NIH Announces Inclusion Across the Lifespan Policy

Posted on January 24, 2018 by Mike Lauer

Last month, NIH announced a revision (NOT-OD-18-116) to a decades-old policy originally conceived in response to concerns that children were not appropriately included in clinical research. These changes broaden the policy to address inclusion of research participants of all ages, and as discussed at the last Advisory Committee to the NIH Director meeting, will apply beginning in 2019 to all NIH-supported research involving human subjects. Our goal is to ensure that the knowledge gained from NIH-funded research is applicable to all those affected by the conditions under study. Continue reading →

Continuing to Strengthen Inclusion Reporting on NIH-funded Phase III Trials

Posted on January 8, 2018 by Mike Lauer

Much has been learned about how sex and race may contribute to differences in health outcomes and physiologic conditions (Clayton, 2014). We know that, for example, a specific drug used to treat insomnia requires different dosing for women and men. African Americans with hypertension are more susceptible to stroke than whites with the same blood pressure levels (Howard, 2013). But in many cases, findings from potentially informative stratified analyses may not be widely available. Less than a third of NIH studies required to analyze sex/gender and race/ethnicity have been found to publish sex-stratified results in peer-reviewed journals (Foulkes, 2011). Continue reading →

Top Stories

Why Attend the Spring 2018 NIH Regional Seminar in Washington, DC

You’ve heard about it and may even know someone who attended, but is it right for you? With the next NIH Regional Seminar on Program Funding and Grants Administration coming to Washington DC May 2-4, let us help you decide. Or check out our YouTube video to get thoughts from previous attendees. If you are an investigator or research administrator new to working with the NIH grants process, don’t let the 2018 NIH Regional Seminar in Washington, D.C. pass you by. Registration is underway now and seminars typically sell out! Learn about the NIH grants process and polices directly from ~ 70 NIH & HHS program, grants management, review and policy staff. …. Continue reading →

New Resources

Having Challenges Tracking Down Students and Postdocs at the Time of the RPPR? Here is a Tip to Make It Easier…

Establishing a process where you have students and postdocs establish an eRA Commons account at the time they start working on an NIH grant award can save you a lot of time and energy trying to track down people who may no longer be at your institution at the time of your Research Performance Progress Report (RPPR) submission. You may even want to have them create an ORCID ID as well! …. Continue reading →


New to eRA Commons?

Sometimes when you are trying something for the first time, it can appear to be somewhat confusing, intimidating, and possibly overwhelming.  eRA is continuously developing new resources for our applicants and grantees to eliminate that perception. Recently eRA has focused on ways to help people new to navigating eRA Commons for the NIH grant application, award, and reporting processes. Because these processes require attention to detail and patience, it can often be overwhelming for those who have never done it before. …. Continue reading →


You Ask, We Answer

How do you define a “study” for the purposes of providing information on the PHS Human Subject and Clinical Trial form and registering in ClinicalTrials.gov?

Our application instructions provide guidance to submit a study record for each protocol. When in doubt, NIH supports lumping several aims or hypotheses into a single study record, to the extent that makes sense for your research.  Have other questions related to the new PHS Human Subject and Clinical Trial form or NIH clinical trial policies? Find more FAQs and their answers at grants.nih.govContinue reading →

Where Can I Find the New PHS Human Subjects and Clinical Trials Information Form?

Like all NIH application forms, the new PHS Human Subjects and Clinical trials Information form is accessed through the submission method you are using. ASSIST, Workspace and all system-to-system solutions provide a way to access and complete the forms. …. Continue reading →