New Faculty Start-Up Funding Opportunity


Printable Version (pdf)
Sample NSF Style Budget Sheet (Excel)
Proposal Cover Sheet (pdf)

New Faculty Start-Up Funding Opportunity
Issued: June 6, 2012
DEADLINES: Abstracts: Noon, June 20, 2012
Proposals: Noon, September 6, 2012

TO: UND Deans and Chairs in the Sciences, Engineering, and Mathematics (SEM)
FROM: Mark R. Hoffmann, Co-Project Director, ND EPSCoR, UND Office
RE: New Faculty Start-Up Funding Opportunity

Department Chairs and Deans recruiting Department Chair / Head-positions are invited to submit proposals requesting start-up funds for tenure-track research faculty to be hired for FY2014. The major goal of this program is to attract highly qualified tenure-track faculty to our research-intensive universities who will be nationally competitive for grants from the National Science Foundation in science, engineering, and mathematics.

Proposals are due in the UND campus ND EPSCoR office by no later than Noon, September 6, 2012. Proposals will be reviewed by an external panel in late October, 2012 on the NDSU campus. The external panel will interview only the Dean or Department Chair submitting the proposal. The interviewee is welcome to bring five copies of supplemental hard copy handouts to this session, but no audio/visual aids will be allowed. Awards will be announced on or about November 15, 2012. ND EPSCoR anticipates making 5-7awards for up to two years of support. Awards are contingent on continued funding from the National Science Foundation and the State of North Dakota. Funds should be available July 1, 2013 to hire a new Department Chair and September 1, 2013, for new faculty.

Key Points Relevant to this Award Program:
1. ND EPSCoR is focused on building research capabilities that are aligned with the research-intensive universities’ institutional long-term research objectives; the research commitments of the higher education roundtable; and research that builds the economic base of North Dakota as expressed by the Governor and the State Legislature. Applicants should consider these points to devise an appropriate Research Infrastructure Development Plan (cf. primary evaluation criterion #4).

2. Department hiring processes will be at various stages during proposal review. Thus, it is not necessary that individual recruits be named in the proposal. Rather, the evaluation will be based on the Primary Evaluation Criteria listed below.

3. Proposals will be reviewed externally, and this committee will make recommendations for funding. The Co-Project Director, in collaboration with the Vice President for Research and Economic Development, negotiates award levels with the successful departments.

4. These funds should be allocated for faculty summer salary (two months maximum per summer), graduate research stipends (academic year and summer), research-related travel, critical permanent equipment, supplies, and other resources deemed essential for a promising investigator to launch a nationally-competitive research program. No academic year faculty salary is allowed.

5. These funds must supplement and not replace resources that would be used to recruit a new professor.

6. These funds are targeted for the new faculty member’s exclusive use.

7. Departments are expected to employ effective search and hiring processes to recruit high-quality diverse faculty.

Primary Evaluation Criteria:
1. The quality and sustainability of the Research Infrastructure Development Plan for recruiting and hiring high-quality diverse faculty with exemplary academic/professional qualifications.

2. The extent to which the applicant department can ensure/provide the environment; i.e., research space, reasonable teaching load, access to equipment and support staff, and the support of her/his colleagues necessary for building a nationally-competitive and sustainable research program via successful proposals, publications, and graduates in an area normally supported by the National Science Foundation.

3. List the department, college, and other support available to the new faculty member provided by the applicant. Typically, though not required, the proposed non-EPSCoR support level equals the amount requested from ND EPSCoR, and coincides with the time period for which EPSCoR support is sought. It may be larger or smaller than the amount requested from ND EPSCoR. Support may be from sources within the university or from extramural (but nonfederal) funds. Non-EPSCoR support in time periods that differ from the EPSCoR granting period must be described and justified in the proposal; adjustments after the grant is awarded is not possible.

4. The quality of plans to ensure successful research mentoring for graduate student and/or postdoctoral positions.

5. The relevance of the department’s Research Infrastructure Development Plan to long-term North Dakota research initiatives expressed by the Governor, the State Legislature, and the federal congressional delegation.


Checklist Requirements: (Failure to comply with this checklist may result in the proposal being rejected.)
Submit both paper and electronic versions:
     Proposal Paper Copies: Original + 4. No more than 11 double-spaced, one-sided pages, margins ≥ 1”, with no less than a 10-point font. Staple all copies in the following order:

1. ND EPSCoR Cover pageavailable at the top of this page.
2. Abstract (one page), which also briefly describes the long term plan for the department.
3. Proposal description (no more than eight pages).
4. NSF style budget sheetavailable at the top of this page.
5. Appendices (20-page maximum) limited to and in the following order:
a) One-page fact sheet describing the state-of-the-department, including current faculty and their research expertise, active and recently expired grants and contracts, and average teaching loads.
b) Letters of commitment for support from department, college, or other sources.
c) Interdepartmental support letters if specific collaborations are proposed.
d) CVs of candidates who have received invitations for interviews from the applicant department (if appropriate, and if particularly strong candidates have been identified).
e) Graduate and Postdoctoral Research Mentoring Plan
f) One-page describing department plans for recruiting a diverse candidate pool and ensuring effective and equitable hiring processes are employed.

     Proposal Electronic Copy: A complete proposal in a single PDF file to Cathy Lerud via email attachment.

Please direct questions to Mark R. Hoffmann at 701-777-2492 or

For information about ND EPSCoR and other funding opportunities, please visit the Web site at