Events Calendar
Loading Events

« All Events

  • This event has passed.

Grant Writing Workshop 2020

October 24, 2020 @ 9:00 am - 12:30 pm

The VBRN Grant Writing Workshop will be held remotely on Saturday, October 24. Attendance at this workshop will be required for all faculty intending to apply for Exploratory, Pilot or Project Award funding for June 1, 2021-May 31, 2022. Details on the program are outlined below.

We are very excited to have Dr. Federico Bernal speak at this event. Dr. Bernal recently took over the IDeA Co-Funding program and will share information on how IDeA faculty can benefit from that program (Vermont is an NIGMS IDeA state). In addition, he serves as the Program Officer for several COBRE grants and an INBRE grant. Dr. Bernal will also speak about when and how to contact Program Officers. There will be ample time for questions after his presentation.

In addition, Dr. Heidi Malaby will give a tutorial on how to analyze FOAs and will specifically highlight the NIH R15 AREA and the NSF RUI grants as they are geared towards PUI faculty. Lastly, VBRN’s Dr. Tabitha Finch will give updates on the upcoming VBRN funding year and talk about the NIH definition of a clinical trial.


              (Zoom Meeting format)

9:00-9:05           Welcome/Introduction to Zoom

9:05-9:35           Dr. Federico Bernal, Program Director in the Division for Research Capacity Building (Topic: IDeA Co-Funding)

9:35-10:00         Dr. Heidi Malaby, Grant Proposal Specialist (Topic: Analyzing FOAs)

10:00-10:20       Dr. Tabitha Finch, VBRN PDE Coordinator (Topic: VBRN Funding Updates)

10:20-10:30       Break

              (Small Groups: Zoom Breakout Rooms)

10:30-11:00       Pitch Paper Review #1

11:00-11:30       Pitch Paper Review #2

11:30-12:00       Pitch Paper Review #3

12:00-12:30       Pitch Paper Review #4

Note the following key dates and information on the two-page pitch paper.

  • Early September: VBRN Exploratory, Pilot and Project Award Requests for Applications released
  • Tuesday, September 15: RSVP to your BPI Coordinator along with any contact information for suggested reviewers
  • Thursday, October 8: Two-page pitch paper due (email to your BPI Coordinator, mandatory requirement to participate in the grant writing workshop)
  • Saturday, October 24: Grant Writing Workshop


Details on the Pitch Paper

Faculty submit a NIH-style proposal to apply for VBRN funding. Because our network is comprised of primarily undergraduate institutions, VBRN encourages faculty to submit AREA R15 grants for extramural funding. As such, the NIH AREA R15 review criteria are used in the VBRN review process and for the pitch papers.

For the two-page pitch paper, faculty are asked to include the specific aims, significance and innovation of the proposed research. The AREA R15 review criteria for these sections are below.

VBRN’s goal is to recruit outside reviewers to participate in the small group breakouts. If you have any suggested reviewers you would like to recommend, please share their contact information when you email your RSVP to your BPI Coordinator. VBRN will then reach out to any suggested reviewers.

Overall Impact

Reviewers will provide an overall impact score to reflect their assessment of the likelihood for the project to make useful scientific contributions to the research field(s) involved, to provide research opportunities to undergraduate students by engaging them in primary research activities, and to strengthen the research environment of the institution, in consideration of the following review criteria and additional review criteria (as applicable for the project proposed).


Does the project address an important problem or a barrier to progress in the field? Is the prior research that serves as the key support for the proposed project rigorous? If the aims of the project are achieved, will the data be publishable and useful to the field? If funded, will the AREA grant have a substantial effect on the applicant institution in terms of strengthening the research environment and exposing undergraduate students to research?


Does the application take advantage of, challenge or build on current research concepts and models or research techniques? Are innovative approaches to engaging undergraduate students in research proposed?


If you have any questions about the workshop, please contact your BPI Coordinator.


October 24, 2020
9:00 am - 12:30 pm
Event Category:


Tabitha Finch