The NIH K-Series Grants • Many K-awards are very similar (focus of this talk) • K01 – Mentored Research Scientist Development Award • K23 – Patient-Oriented Research • K07 – Prevention/Behavior/Population Scientists • K08 – Same, mostly for clinicians wishing to do research • K25 – Qualitative Scientists • Other options as well: • K22 – Career transition award • K24 – Mid-career award for clinicians • K99/R00 – Pathway to Independence • See NIH website for more information
The NIH K-Series Grants • Goal is to transition into an independent investigator within the award period • Additional training • Establishment of area of expertise • Get R01 • Up to 5 years of support • Generally need to commit at least 75% effort • Protects time • Can’t draw additional FEDERAL funding until last two years • Small amount of research funds • Not eligible if you received R01 or equivalent, or another K series grant • Completely transferrable to another institution!
NUMBER OF RESEARCH CAREER AWARDS* Number of Awards * Includes both individual and institutional awards. The actual number of individual participants is higher. Fiscal Year
TOTAL AND AVERAGE AWARD AMOUNT OF INDIVIDUAL RESEARCH CAREER AWARDS Average Award Amount Total Award Amount Total Award Amount (in millions) Average Award Amount (in thousands) Fiscal Year
NUMBER OF RESEARCH CAREER AWARDS BY DISTRIBUTION OF AWARDS Number of Awards *Activities sorted by number of awards in FY 2000. Count includes non-competing continuations. Competing applications for K04, K11, K14, K15, K16, K17 and K20 were discontinued in FY 1995. K99, KL1 and KL2 are new activities as of FY 2007. Fiscal Year
5 Key Sections of Proposal • Candidate • Career Development Plan • Mentors • Research Plan • Institutional Support • Make sure you have a clearly defined career goals and all sections support your transition into an independent investigator that has accomplished these goals
Candidate • Why are you an ideal candidate for this award? • Want highly motivated, productive scientists • You’re the best out there… but… not so great that you don’t need some career development • Highlight all your accomplishments • Need to demonstrate your productivity • Everything you learned • Manuscripts • Presentations • Awards
Candidate • Letters of recommendation should be from 3 most well established scientists who know you well (and are not your mentors) • Need to say that they think you have the ability and resources to carry out career development plan and become a successful independent investigator in the area of x • Don’t be modest!
Career Development Plan • Needs to clearly support your overall goals • Identify key components missing from your past training • Outline a specific plan on how you will address these gaps over award period • Coursework (in our outside of institution) • Mentors and/or consultants • Projects
Career Development Plan • Have clearly outlined products coming from your award • Manuscripts • Grant proposals • Presentations at national/international conferences • Include a general career development component (e.g. attending such talks)
Mentors • Should be committed to your career development • Must have a clearly defined role for being a mentor • If past mentor, need to say what new skills they will lead you in • Must have clear plan for how they will assist your career development • Emphasize their qualifications • Past mentees that are now successful investigators • Well funded • Generally should not be junior faculty
Mentors • Have plan for all mentors (and yourself) to get together at least once a year • Letters from mentors very important • Must say you are a fantastic candidate • Must say you have a fantastic career development and research plan • Must reiterate their qualifications • Must state what you said they would work with you on in your proposal • Must agree to meet with you as frequently as you said you would in your proposal
Research Plan • Important, but not more important than candidate and career development sections • Completely in line with your career goals • Does it take advantage of the new skills your learning? Lead to further training in that area?
Research Plan • Feasible in proposed time frame, also allowing for other career development plans • Ideally would lead to future projects (i.e. your proposed R01 in later years) • Include potential ideas for future projects based on this research
Institutional Support • Very important • Need to say that you are a valuable part of this institution • Is there a special skill/area of expertise you have that other faculty don’t? • Do they need more researchers in your area to collaborate with current faculty? • Department chair must commit to protecting your time commitment for this award (at least 75%), and covering the remainder of your salary • Emphasize great environment
Important Suggestions • Want to write in submitting R01 (and probably some other grants) in the final 2-3 years • Important goal of K award • Need to transition down from your 75% effort • Find someone else who has submitted the same/similar mechanism • Talk to your program officer!
NIH Link • NIH K-Kiosk: • http://grants.nih.gov/training/careerdevelopmentawards.htm • My email: • Cheryl.L.Thompson@case.edu