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Funding Opportunity: NIH “Strengthening the Biomedical Research Workforce” Program

The NIH Common Fund’s Strengthening the Biomedical Research Workforce program announces a new Funding Opportunity Announcement (RFA-RM-12-022) to solicit applications for the Broadening Experiences in Scientific Training (BEST) awards that will support the development of novel graduate and postdoctoral training activities intended to expose trainees to diverse career options.

Tune in March 26, 2013, 3:00pm-4:00pm, for an informational webinar designed to provide details and answer questions about the program. For more information about this webinar and to register, please visit: https://www4.gotomeeting.com/register/218085999. Please submit questions in advance to: Workforce_Award@mail.nih.gov.

 

Letter of Intent Due: April 10, 2013

Submission Date: May 10, 2013

Earliest Start Date: Sept 16, 2013

FAQs site: http://commonfund.nih.gov/workforce/faq.aspx

 

This program was developed in response to recommendations of the Advisory Committee to the Director (ACD) Working Group on Biomedical Workforce. The committee studied the current state of the biomedical research workforce, and NIH’s support of its training (http://acd.od.nih.gov/Biomedical_research_wgreport.pdf).

The purpose of this announcement is to identify and support bold and innovative approaches to broaden and complement traditional research training in biomedical, behavioral, social, and clinical (referred to as “biomedical”) sciences to better prepare graduate students and postdoctoral scientists for a wide range of career options in biomedical research. These include research or research-related occupations in the private sector, government, and academia. Collaborations with non-academic partners are encouraged to ensure that experts from a broad spectrum of careers contribute to coursework, rotations, internships or other forms of exposure.

Key features include:

  • The program seeks innovative approaches to complement traditional research training.
  • The program encourages institutions to leverage funds across their existing training activities, and with corporate, government, and other potential employers.
  • Programs must have the potential to engage all biomedical PhD students and postdocs at the institution.
  • Awards can be for up to $250,000 per year direct costs for 5 years plus full indirect costs; stipend support is not allowable.
  • There will be an emphasis on measurable program objectives and outcome analyses.
  • Awards are non-renewable, with the expectation that institutions will develop new academic and business models that allow the programs to be sustained beyond the period of this award.
  • Applications will be reviewed by appropriate Scientific Review Groups in the Center for Scientific Review.
  • NIH expects to make eight-10 BEST awards in 2013.

For more details on the Strengthening the Biomedical Research Workforce program, please visit http://commonfund.nih.gov/workforce/index.aspx.

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