Category Archives: Grants Administration

NSF System Shutdown – September 17-18, 2016

Dear Colleagues:

NSF will be making repairs to the Foundation’s electrical systems on September 17-18, 2016. All NSF systems, including the NSF website,Research.gov and FastLane, will be unavailable from 5:00 PM on Saturday, September 17, until 4:00 PM on Sunday, September 18.

As a result of NSF system shutdowns, the following deadline dates which fall on September 19th have been extended to 5 p.m. submitter’s local time on September 20th:

  • NSF 16-586: NSF/Intel Partnership on Information-Centric Networking in Wireless Edge Networks (ICN-WEN) – Letter of Intent Deadline
  • NSF 16-562: Prediction of and Resilience against Extreme Events (PREEVENTS) – Full Proposal Deadline
  • NSF 16-532: Software Infrastructure for Sustained Innovation (SI2-SSE&SSI) Crosscutting – Full Proposal Deadline

These solicitations have been modified to reflect the new deadline date.  Proposers should ensure that they select September 20th as the Deadline/Target date on the Remainder of Coversheet for the proposal.


Resetting your NSF password

On August 1, NSF will implement a more convenient and secure process for resetting NSF passwords. NSF awardees and proposers will no longer be able to reach out to Sponsored Projects Offices (SPO) to reset their passwords on both FastLane and Research.gov; instead, the user must reset their own password.

To reset passwords, awardees and proposers can go to www.research.gov and click “Log In,” then “Forgot Password.” After entering their NSF ID and clicking, “Send Temporary Password,” they will be able to reset their passwords using the temporary password sent to their email address on file.

Passwords must be between 8 and 20 characters and use three of the four categories below:

  • Upper-case letter
  • Lower-case letter
  • Number
  • One of the following special characters:  # & % ! @ ( )

In addition, the last six passwords cannot be reused, and accounts will be locked for five minutes after the tenth unsuccessful password attempt.

If you have any questions, please contact the Sponsored Programs Office at 487-2226.


February 2016 Internal Proposal Deadline Change

Due to the large number of proposals expected to be submitted to sponsors on February 16 and February 25, the Sponsored Programs Office (SPO) finds it necessary to adjust the internal proposal deadline for those specific dates only to four working days prior to the sponsor’s deadline.  The additional time will allow for our analysts to perform our review process.

The internal deadline for those proposals due to sponsors on February 16 will be February 11 and for those proposals due to sponsors on February 25 will be February 22.

SPO will communicate the new internal deadline to those PI’s that have informed us about their intent to submit.  Please share this important change with your faculty and staff.


FY16 Fringe Benefit Rates Update

The Office of Naval Research has recently approved the fiscal year 2016 predetermined Fringe Benefit rates for Michigan Tech effective July 1, 2015. This predetermined rate agreement replaces the provisional rates communicated in the memo to the Deans, Chairs and Directors on July 1, 2015. This final rate agreement consists of two rate changes from the provisional rate agreement and is effective retroactively to July 1, 2015. The graduate student rate has changed to 7.7% from 9.4% and the temporary employee rate has changed to 9% from 12.5%.

These approved fringe benefit rates should be used on all Sponsored Programs proposal budgets as of the date of this memo. All funds, including sponsored projects, will be charged these new rates retroactive to July 1, 2015. Sponsored Programs Accounting will contact departments and Principal Investigators if a sponsored project that has been closed or is in the process of being closed is affected.

In accordance with the Fiscal Year 2016 approved Predetermined Fringe Benefit rate agreement, the rates effective July 1, 2015 are as follows:

· Regular Non-Student Employees Rate 37.5%

· Summer/Additional Compensation Rate 20.0%

· Graduate Student Rate 7.7%

· Temporary Employees Rate 9%

· Undergraduate Student Rate 0%


Change in Internal Proposal Deadline for NIH Proposals

The Sponsored Programs Office has changed the internal proposal deadline for NIH proposals requiring them one day earlier than the published internal deadline.  Due to the increased processing time for compliance checks during the submission process, this adjustment was necessary to ensure the complete submission by the NIH deadline.

This change has been noted on the Internal Deadline Chart.



NSF and NIH new bio sketch guidelines

NSF and NIH have implemented new biographical sketch guidelines.  The new templates can be found on the Sponsored Programs Office website at the following locations:  http://www.mtu.edu/research/references/pdf/NSF-biosketch-sample.docx and http://www.mtu.edu/research/references/pdf/NIH-biosketch sample.docx.  Please use these updated templates and guidelines when preparing your NSF and NIH proposals.


Industrial F&A Rate

Effective immediately, Michigan Tech will begin assessing the uncapped facilities and administrative cost rate [currently 63%] to all industrial sponsored proposals. As always, Sponsored Programs will consider requests to reduce the assessed F&A rate when cost share is required on a project, when there are concerns about cost-competitiveness of a proposal, and when the project has a maximum total cost – the form for requesting such a reduction is at http://www.mtu.edu/research/administration/sponsored-programs/pdf/IDCreduct_waiver.pdf.

Federal pass through funding will continue to be assessed the appropriate federal rate, and all proposals previously submitted with the capped rate will be grandfathered at the rate at which they were submitted.


Graduate Student Estimating Tables for Proposal Budgets (FY10)

The graduate student estimating tables for stipend levels and tuition and fee rates has been updated.  These rates are to be used in proposal budgets to external sponsors.  You can find the tables at Sponsored Programs Budget Estimating Tables.

These rates are effective immediately.


National Science Foundation Proposal Submission Change

The Sponsored Programs Office would like to inform you of the following proposal submission change. Due to an expected increase in Grants.gov submissions relating to the processing of Recovery Act proposals, the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) has authorized agencies to use alternative methods for proposal submission and acceptance.

Effective immediately, new funding opportunities issued by NSF will exclusively require the use of FastLane to prepare and submit proposals. NSF plans to revise existing funding opportunity documents to reflect this change and to remove all active application packages from Grants.gov APPLY. Updated NSF information about available funding opportunities will be posted to Grants.gov FIND.

Once you have identified your grant opportunity, be sure to carefully read the instructions to ensure you are following proper submission procedures for that application, even if you have applied before. Grants.gov will still be the one place to find all available federal grant opportunities and all opportunities will include specific application instructions, including instructions for submitting applications outside of Grants.gov.

These agencies will be accepting some or all applications outside of Grants.gov: Corporation for National and Community Service (CNCS), Department of Defense (DOD), Department of Education (DOED), Department of Energy (DOE), Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD), Department of Justice (DOJ), Department of Treasury, Department of Transportation (DOT), Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), National Air and Space Administration (NASA), the Department of Homeland Security (DHS), and the National Science Foundation (NSF). Please pay close attention to the grant announcements and application instructions for these agencies.

Detailed instructions regarding the technical aspects of proposal preparation and submission via FastLane are available at: http://www.fastlane.nsf.gov/.

If you have any questions contact the Sponsored Programs Office at 487-2226.