Funding & Service

SHARE YOUR IDEAS ON CYBERINFRASTRUCTURE

A new NSF Dear Colleague Letter (DCL; NSF 17-031) has been posted: Request for Information on Future Needs for Advanced Cyberinfrastructure to Support Science and Engineering Research (NSF CI 2030).

From the DCL:

“NSF Directorates and Offices are jointly requesting input from the research community on science challenges and associated cyberinfrastructure needs over the next decade and beyond. Contributions to this Request for Information will be used during the coming year to inform the Foundation’s strategy and plans for advanced cyberinfrastructure investments. We invite bold, forward-looking ideas that will provide opportunities to advance the frontiers of science and engineering well into the future.”

We encourage MCB to weigh in – what do you see as the cyberinfrastructure that will be needed to advance molecular and cellular biosciences?

The DCL points to an external submission website (http://www.nsfci2030.org/). Please note that the deadline for submissions is April 5, 2017 5:00 PM ET. Questions about this effort and the submission process should be sent to Dr. William Miller, Office of Advanced Cyberinfrastructure, at this email address: nsfci2030rfi@nsf.gov.

EXPLORING NON-ACADEMIC SCIENCE CAREERS: SUPPLEMENTAL FUNDING FOR CAREER DEVELOPMENT

Although university-driven research projects provide a rich academic research experience for PhD candidates, a variety of recent studies indicate that many science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) career options for current Ph.D. graduates will be outside academia. Recognizing the impact of these trends in employment opportunities  for Ph.D. holders, NSF has made improving graduate student preparedness a priority for FY 16-17.

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The graph above indicates that the percentage of doctoral candidates in the life sciences with a “definite commitment for employment or a postdoc position” as they approached graduation declined to the lowest point of the previous 20 years. Source: National Science Foundation, National Center for Science and Engineering Statistics. 2015. Doctorate Recipients from U.S. Universities: 2014. Special Report NSF 16-300. Arlington, VA. Available at https://goo.gl/pb7hMA

Hosting a new supplementary funding opportunity is one way MCB supports this agency priority goal. The “Improving Graduate Student Preparedness for Entering the Workforce, Opportunities for Supplemental Support” (NSF 16-067) supplemental funding opportunity was announced in June 2015.

“There is very little formal training [for graduate students] in even recognizing the diverse career options available” to them, observes Dr. Linda Hyman, Division Director of MCB. “The bio-sciences community needs a change in training that hasn’t happened in many years.” The decision to provide this opportunity for supplemental funding is data-driven, adds Dr. Hyman, based on information in a published by the National Institutes of Health in 2012.

NSF 16-067 was intentionally written in broad terms to encourage junior scientists and senior students confronting the urgency of addressing “what’s next.” The supplement provides PIs with an avenue for encouraging their students to explore careers outside academia. The funding may be used to attend professional development courses, serve in an internship in the private sector, or build specialized skills that could help them be more competitive in the job market in arenas such as public policy, communications, industry, and technology transfer.

“This supplement helps PIs provide professional development opportunities for their students  in areas that may be outside their comfort zone,” says Dr. Hyman. “Our hope is that the community will use the supplement to expand awareness of and increase preparedness for the many career options available to new graduates.”

Principle Investigators who are current MCB awardees are encouraged to explore non-academic career development and NSF 16-067 with their students. Supplemental requests will be considered on a first-come, first-served basis. Requests should be made no later than April 3, 2017 for FY 2017 consideration.

Types of Submissions

The Proposal & Award Policies & Procedures Guide (PAPPG) comprises documents relating to the Foundation’s proposal and award process.

In this ongoing segment of our blog, we will provide a series of infographic snapshots to highlight some of the important information found in the PAPPG. This in no way replaces the need to read the PAPPG before submitting a proposal.  The goal of this ongoing blog theme is to make the information in the PAPPG more accessible to our readers by providing clear, concise, colorful, and informative graphics.

For complete and official information about type of submissions, please refer to the PAPPG (effective January 25, 2016).

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* Preliminary proposals are part of the proposal process in the Division of Environmental Biology and the Division of Integrative Organismal Systems in the Directorate for Biological Sciences.

Categories of Funding Opportunities

The Proposal & Award Policies & Procedures Guide (PAPPG) comprises documents relating to the Foundation’s proposal and award process.

In this new segment of our blog, we will provide a series of infographic snapshots to highlight some of the important information found in the PAPPG. This in no way replaces the need to read the PAPPG before submitting a proposal.  The goal of this ongoing blog theme is to make the information in the PAPPG more accessible to our readers by providing clear, concise, colorful, and informative graphics.

PAPPG

Click here for the direct link to the “Categories of Funding Opportunities” section.