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VPR Programs in Equity, Diversity, and Inclusion (EDI)

We announce three new funding mechanisms in 2020-2021 to facilitate research in EDI-related topics, support efforts to diversify the research community, and commit to equitable and family friendly policies and resources for researchers. Along with the research climate initiatives, the goal of these funding programs is to provide a just, supportive, and inclusive environment for researchers at the University of Utah, and to make the research enterprise accessible to current and prospective Utah residents of all backgrounds. Funds for these programs are are administered at the discretion of the VPR; only the most competitive and well-justified requests will be funded. 

The following are three new mechanisms to support EDI-related activities in research:

Support for Voluntary Cost Shares Administrative Supplements for a Diverse Research Community|  Grant Writing Assistance

1. Support for Voluntary Cost Shares in EDI-related Research Proposals

External grant proposals that are specifically aimed at funding research on, or enhancing, EDI will be eligible for cost sharing to make proposals more competitive, or fund aspects of the project not supported by the sponsor.

These requests will be treated as voluntary committed cost shares (included in the proposal budget) or voluntary uncommitted cost shares (not committed in the proposal or communications to the sponsor). For more information on University cost shares, see the cost share section of the Research Handbook. To apply, investigators should follow the process outlined in the Cost Sharing Resource section of the OSP website. Requests must comply with the University’s Cost Sharing on Sponsored Projects Policy, and with federal and sponsor requirements. All terms and conditions of a voluntary cost share apply to this program. 

Requests are made by filling out the OSP cost share form, attaching a description of the EDI-related work and cost share request to the DSS, and obtaining department and dean approval in eProposal (the normal approval process for all cost share requests). After approval by OSP, the DSS will be routed to the VPR. These steps will need to be taken well in advance of the proposal deadline. We recommend submitting department/dean approved requests at least two weeks in advance of the deadline, or more if the cost share request is central to the project scope of work and description of the project to the sponsor.

Final approval of all cost share requests are at the discretion of the VPR. EDI-related cost share requests will specifically be evaluated based on 1) the relevance of the proposal for enhancing EDI through research, training, or related activities, and 2) the potential for the cost share to effectively leverage university funds and existing programs to achieve institutional and program EDI goals. To qualify for this program, the proposal scope of work should be primarily focused on EDI research, education, or community outcomes. 

A list of extramural funding opportunities in the EDI field can be found HERE.

2. Administrative Supplements to Promote a Diverse Research Community

Supplements to externally funded existing grants will be considered to support recruitment or retention of research personnel from groups that have low representation in the research community. Principal Investigators who have identified a specific individual to be recruited to the University of Utah to work on an existing externally funded project (such as a graduate student, post-doc, research staff, or career-line faculty, or a current researcher in one of these categories supported by an existing grant who is a retention risk) can apply for supplements to improve recruitment and retention outcomes.

To qualify for this program, the candidate to be recruited or retained should belong to one of the following underrepresented groups:

    1. Individuals from one or more underrepresented racial and ethnic groups as identified by the National Science Foundation including: Black or African American, Hispanic or Latinx, American Indians or Alaska Natives, Native Hawaiians and or other Pacific Islanders.

    2. Individuals with disabilities, defined as those with a physical or mental impairment that significantly limits one or more major life activities, as described in the Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990, as amended.

    3. Individuals who self-identify as part of the LGBTQIAAP+ community.

    4. Individuals from disadvantaged backgrounds, defined as those who meet two or more of the following criteria:


Principal Investigators who are tenure- or career-line faculty of 0.75 FTE or greater, and who are recruiting or retaining project personnel from the above categories to work on current, externally funded grants, may apply. Research grants eligible for supplements may be from any external funding source. If the external grant does not generate F&A, then cost sharing from the department, institute, or college is required in the supplement budget. The research personnel to be recruited or retained may be graduate students, post-doctoral scholars, research staff, or career line faculty. If the request is related to recruitment, the recruited individual must be a new hire or student to the University of Utah. If the request is related to retention, the applicant must make a convincing case for retention risk, e.g., the individual demonstrates there is a competing job offer outside the University.

  • Supplements are intended to improve the University’s success in recruiting and retaining personnel from underrepresented groups. Funds can only be used to reimburse the costs of recruitment (e.g. visits to the campus), competitive salary and benefits, or as an additional stipend to assist with retention.
  • The requested amount cannot exceed one year of direct costs of the grant, for a maximum of $50k/year. Additional matching funds of up to $25k will be considered if the department, college, or institute provides a cost share. Note that current NIH investigators are eligible to apply for a similar program that has a budget maximum of $100k/year. Please see: PA-18-586 Research Supplements to Support Diversity in Health-Related Research.
  • Matching funds from the department, college or institute are required if the external grant does not generate F&A.
  • The initial award period is for one year, with the possibility of a renewal in year two with evidence of adequate progress in the project and mentoring of the candidate.
  • Funds for this program are limited and only the most competitive requests will be funded. The PI must make a compelling case that their request meets the program goals of enhancing EDI at the University of Utah, in the research enterprise, and in the state workforce.
  • Before funds are awarded, awardees will need to confirm that the candidate has signed an offer letter for a position related to the research project, notify the VPR of their start date, and submit a long-term career progress/retention plan for their time at the U of U beyond the award period.
  • EDI-related training courses offered by the VPR Research Education Office will be required for all research personnel in this program, including the PI.

  1. Cover Page with the PI’s name, affiliation, Project Title, and budget total – to be collected via InfoReady
  2. PI Narrative – PDF Format Only, 2 pages max.
    • Description of the role of the candidate to be recruited/retained in the research project and their qualifications.
    • Description of the unique opportunity to enhance EDI by recruiting or retaining candidate in the project.
    • Justifications should be intersectional. Gender or low socioeconomic status identification alone will not be sufficient evidence of belonging to an under-represented group.
  3. Candidate c.v. or resume – PDF Format Only, no length limit.
  4. Voluntary Candidate Statement – PDF Format Only, 2 pages max.
    • Voluntary statement from the candidate describing their eligibility for the program, i.e. how they fit the program criteria with regard to identity, background, or personal experiences.
  5. Required Letter of Support from the Division or Department Chair – PDF Format Only, 2 pages max.
    • Statement from the chair that the department provides a supportive and inclusive environment for all researchers and has a written plan for EDI in place.
    • Description of the programs, resources, and support mechanisms in place for mentoring and career development of the EDI candidate.
  6. One year budget and budget justification for the recruitment/retention expenses – PDF or excel format.
    • Provide a detailed list and justification for the requested expenses as salary, stipend, benefits, or travel reimbursement. Other recruitment/retention expenses will be considered on a case-by-case basis with justification.
  7. Abstract, and budget, and budget justification of the external grant – PDF Format only, no length limit.

Applications will be accepted in the InfoReady Competition site on a rolling basis.

click here to apply!

3. Faculty Grant Writing Support

To support faculty who experience significant hardship in meeting their extramural proposal submission goals due to family-care, other personal responsibilities, or unexpected life events. Funds through this competition will be available for grant writing assistance.

Qualified faculty who plan to submit a research proposal to an extramural sponsor, but have been hindered or limited by family-care responsibilities or other unexpected life events, may apply for funds to contract with external grant-writing specialists for assistance. Examples of responsibilities and life events include, but are not limited, to:

  • Dependent care obligations, e.g. childcare responsibilities & care for parents or other dependents.
  • Illness, including COVID-19 related health issues.

Funds are to be used for grant writing assistance from a professional consultant to help prepare the proposal for a planned submission to an external sponsor.  Consultant services may include:

  • Late-stage review of a proposal: a mostly developed grant is reviewed and meetings are conducted to discuss revisions and provide copy-editing advice
  • Copy-editing
  • Facilitation/Ideation/Project Management (depending on request and scope)
  • Non-technical writing assistance
  • Compliance and requirement checks

This program will support consultant services per faculty for one planned proposal submission. The exact funding amount will depend on the requested services. The VPR Office will coordinate the consultant fee and introductions between the consultant and the awarded recipient.

Applicants should be tenure- or career-line faculty with a 0.75 or greater FTE. If applying due to dependent care responsibilities, applicant should be considered the primary caregiver. 

  • Applicants should have a plan to submit a full proposal to an external funding program with a deadline that is at least 2 months away prior to the program deadline or target submission date.
  • Award recipients must verify that the proposal was submitted as planned.

  • Cover Page including the applicant’s name and affiliation, proposal sponsor, RFA title and number, and RFA deadline – to be collected via InfoReady
  • Narrative describing the hardships that are causing difficulties in submitting a proposal by the sponsor’s deadline – PDF format only, 2 page max.
  • Timeline of the Proposal Plan describing the components that require assistance from a consultant to meet the proposal deadline, e.g., non-technical writing sections of the proposal, copy-editing, etc. PDF format only, 1 page max.
  • Current CV including a list of current and previous grant support, PDF format only, no length limit.

Applications will be accepted in the InfoReady Competition site on a rolling basis.

Click here to apply!

Last Updated: 8/3/21