Carolina For The Kids Research Grants
The UNC, Carolina for the Kids Research Grant program will be funding a limited number of grants to support faculty or fellow pediatric-related projects. The Carolina for the Kids grant program aims to assist new investigators in developing their research efforts and to provide support for established investigators with new projects or lapsed funding.
The Carolina for the Kids Grant Program supports pediatric research in up to three grant categories listed below. All three categories may not be funded."
A. Seed money for junior faculty investigators
B. Established faculty investigators
i. Bridge funding
ii. Funding for novel projects
C. Fellows research
General Eligibility Criteria and Guidelines
Applicants for a Carolina for the Kids Research Grant must be faculty in the Department of Pediatrics or at North Carolina Children’s Hospital, or be a current fellow in good standing within UNC Hospitals. Only one proposal may be submitted per applicant. Applications will be evaluated by a review committee comprised of representative faculty from the Department of Pediatrics and the North Carolina Children’s Hospital.
Description of the Grant Types
- Length of award: Each award can be made for up to an 18-month period. Extensions beyond the grant date may be requested for special circumstances. Extensions typically are not allowed for awards made under Category C. All extensions shall require approval by Carolina for the Kids Research Grant Executive Committee.
- Start date: Upon approval of funding there will be a specific start date for all grants, and investigators will not have access to their funds until all appropriate University, IACUC, and/or IRB approvals have been received (human or animal subjects, biohazards, etc).
Specific information about each type of grant:
A: Junior Researchers
B: Established faculty investigators
Projected Maximum Award Amount
Individuals who have not previously competed successfully for an NIH-supported research project, specifically Assistant Professors or Instructors who need preliminary data for an extramural grant application.
Individuals who have a track record of NIH funding and display scholarly productivity through publications.
Intended for all fellows in a training program performing a research component.
Requirements for Award
The applicant must present a clear research proposal and a plan that has a high likelihood for leading to an extramural grant application.
It is expected that an extramural grant application will be submitted within 6 months of the completion of the Carolina for the Kids Research proposal.
The applicant must demonstrate that the project has high promise of successful extramural funding.
It is expected that an extramural grant application will be submitted within 6 months of the completion of the Carolina for the Kids Research Grant proposal.
Mentors are committing to help the applicant present and/or publish research results.
The applicant must complete a final progress report at the end of the award.
Category B: Established Investigators
This Category has been divided into 2 Subcategories:
B.1. Bridge funding – This Subcategory is specifically intended for currently or recently funded investigators with a proven track record of NIH funding who need funding to “bridge” research costs between grant applications (though investigator support is not covered). This Subcategory requires that investigators target renewed or new NIH funding for long-term support and this intent must be outlined in the application. Only investigators who have submitted a NIH grant that has received a positive review but was not funded are eligible for bridging funding. The applicant must include the official summary statement with the Carolina for the Kids Research Grant application.
B.2. Funding for Novel Projects – This subcategory is specifically intended for established investigators who would like to expand or redirect research activities toward a new extramural funding opportunity.
Category C: Fellows Research
Applicants must apply with a faculty mentor. Faculty mentors partnering with fellows will assume responsibility for stewardship of funds and program compliance, including any issues following the fellow’s graduation and departure from the program. Signature documentation of this agreement is required and is part of the application, including a letter of support and biosketch from the Mentor. (Faculty Support Form, Attachment 2 this document)
Grant Application Packet (required documents)
Application packets are required to contain the following:
1. Completed proposal
- Abstract page
- Project description (3 page limit, start with specific aims)
- Impact on career (faculty) or training (fellow) (1 page limit)
- Certification and approval(s) (eg, training in research (IRB/OHRP, HIPPA); animal, human, IND, rDNA approval)
- Biosketch in NIH format
3. Supplemental materials
- Faculty Support Form (Fellow only)
- Faculty Mentor Letter of Support and Biosketch (Fellows only, see Attachment 2 this document for instructions)
- Email from Division Chief acknowledging approval of the grant (Faculty only)
Submit completed application packets to the Children’s Research Institute firstname.lastname@example.org, in the Pediatric Administration no later than 5:00 p.m. on October 9, 2017.
Proposal Review, Scoring and Feedback
The Review Process
The Carolina for the Kids Research Grant review and scoring process is designed to provide valuable feedback to PIs who are “learning the ropes,” promote fairness and high standards in the grant writing process, and support the research community’s efforts for self-improvement and pursuit of extramural funding.
All applications must undergo a design and statistical review prior to the submission deadline date. This may be performed by a fellow investigator, mentor, collaborator, or biostatistician. The individual who completes this review must sign and date the applicant’s main application form. Please be sure the study’s stated aims and the statistical analysis plan are consistent.
After submission, each proposal is assigned a primary and a secondary reviewer from the Review Committee. Each proposal will be reviewed, scored, prioritized and presented to the Review Committee by the primary and/or secondary reviewer(s).
The Review Committee is comprised of Department of Pediatrics and North Carolina Children’s Hospital faculty members chosen for their excellence in research and experience in such a review process. The Review Committee will recommend each grant be either “Approved for Consideration of Funding” or “Not Approved for Consideration of Funding.” The Review Committee then presents these recommendations to the Review Executive Committee, who makes the final funding decision.
Possible scores assigned to a faculty proposal (Categories A – B)
1 Approved for Consideration of Funding
2 Minor revisions (executive committee review)*
3 Major revisions (requires re-evaluation by the primary and secondary reviewers)*
4 Resubmit next deadline
5 Triaged; No resubmission will be accepted
Possible scores assigned to a fellow proposal (Category C)
1 Approved for Consideration of Funding
2 Considered for Funding after Revision (goes back to the primary and secondary reviewers)*
3 Do Not Fund
* Applicants receiving a request for any type of revisions will have an opportunity to review the Reviewer comments and respond. The Review Committee may change the score based on the applicant’s response to the Reviewer comments. Any proposal (initial score of 2 or 3) that does not receive a subsequent score of 1 on reconsideration will be returned to the investigator for possible reconsideration at a future funding cycle.
Proposals are scored on the following areas:
- Does the applicant meet the eligibility criteria for the category to which s/he has applied?
- Quality and merit
- Is the hypothesis valid with the supporting evidence?
- Logical aims
- Are procedures adequate and feasible?
- Are investigators qualified?
- Is there the potential for future funding?
- Is the budget appropriate for the submission?
- Has the applicant appropriately met requirements for past Carolina for the Kids Research Grant (Promise Grant) awards? (applicable to submissions for PIs who currently have a Carolina for the Kids Research Grant/ Promise grant or have had one in the past)
Feedback from the Review Committee
In order to provide ample feedback to PIs, applicants will receive notification of the grant status following the Review Committee meeting. Along with notification that their grant was either approved or not approved for funding, applicants will receive the reviewers’ comments, the score from the Review Committee, and the priority score.
Post Award Process & Financial Management
Before the funded project can start, the appropriate accounts must be set up in the UNC Department of Pediatrics financial data systems.
Upon notification of an award, PIs will have 18 months from date of award to complete his or her research, allowing ample time to receive IACUC, IRB, and any other approvals necessary. Investigators will not have access to funds until the proper protocols have been approved. PIs are responsible for obtaining the necessary approvals and maintaining current certifications of training in research (IRB/OHRP, HIPPA).
Faculty Grants: Extensions of up to one year may be allowed when human subjects are involved in the study and recruitment numbers have not been achieved at the end of the study period. Extensions shall require approval by Carolina for the Kids Research Grant Review Executive Committee.
Carolina for the Kids Research Grant Account Reviews
Account reviews are mandatory, both after a time period of one year and 90 days prior to the completion of the project. Any funds remaining in the project after the end of the 18 month period will be returned to the Carolina for the Kids Research Grants program.
Carolina for the Kids Research Grant Tracking Program
PIs are expected to complete a questionnaire after the time period of one year as well as a final progress report to UNC at the end of the award period. Failure to submit either one of these reports may jeopardize future Carolina for the Kids Research Grant applications by the investigator.
All Carolina for the Kids Research Grant awards will be entered into a tracking program to evaluate the productivity of investigators related to extramural funding applications, awards, publications, and research development. Grant and manuscript tracking of award productivity begins on the date of the award (account set-up date). Future Carolina for the Kids Research Grant applications will have this tracking information made available to the reviewers and the Carolina for the Kids Research Grants committee for consideration in their deliberations. Investigators that have successfully fulfilled the grant submission and publication requirements within the appropriate period of time will have this accomplishment highlighted during the application process for future Carolina for the Kids Research Grants funding.
Citing the Carolina for the Kids Research Grants program
Carolina for the Kids Research Grant-supported researchers will acknowledge support from the Carolina for the Kids Research Grants program in their publications and presentations (e.g., “This research was supported, in part, by the Carolina for the Kids Research Grants Program”).
Attachment 1 – Approved and Not Approved Expenses
This attachment provides guidance regarding expenses that Carolina for the Kids Research Grant awards may or may not cover.
Note: These lists are not necessarily all inclusive. Please contact Pediatrics Accounting Administration with any questions about whether or not Carolina for the Kids Research funds cover any possible expense.
- Biostatistical support
- Computer/software (with clear justification they are needed for research).
- Any information technology-related purchases deemed essential to the project by the awards committee must be approved by Department of Pediatrics IT. All hardware and software will be considered property of the Department, and the Department will determine appropriate disposition of such items at the end of the project.
- Office supplies (research-related only)
- Postage for submissions and in general (research-related)
- Publication costs of publishers (submit info from publisher)
- Salary and fringe benefit (UNC faculty not allowed; other research positions may be allowed, but must be approved by PI’s department via the routing/signature process)
- Supplies for research projects; actual research costs
- Travel exceeding no more than $1,000 for presentation of research at national meeting (for PIs who do not have funds)
Not Approved Expenses
- Any expense not directly related to research activity
- Any personal professional expense
- Board exam fees
- Board review courses
- Grant writing/editing for submissions, articles, etc.
- Lab coats
- Medical licenses
- Membership dues to societies and professional organizations
- Professional liability insurance
- Telephone and pager
- Travel (unless PI has no funds)
Attachment 2 – Faculty Mentor Letter of Support
Applicants submitting under Category C must apply with a faculty mentor. Faculty mentors partnering with fellows or research residents will assume responsibility for stewardship of funds and program compliance, including any issues remaining following the resident or fellow’s graduation and departure from the program. Signature documentation of this agreement is required and is part of the application (Faculty Support Form). Mentors are asked to submit a letter of support that demonstrates a mentoring plan.
Include in the Faculty Mentor Letter of Support:
1) Mentor’s prior experience in mentioning trainees.
2) Demonstration of adequate time available from the mentor needed to oversee the project.
3) Resources the mentor possesses and resources needed in order to carry out the proposed project. Request any new resources needed in the budget.
4) A timetable showing expected progress on the project.
5) A commitment by the mentor to help the fellow present and/or publish the research.
Include the Faculty Mentor Letter of Support with the application, after the completed Faculty Support Form, and Biosketch in NIH format.