Diversity Supplement FAQs
No, you would not be eligible for a postdoc diversity supplement. Only those who have fewer than five years of relevant research experience since the receipt of their doctoral degrees are eligible. We encourage you to consider the ECHO Opportunities and Infrastructure Fund, which allows for early career investigators to apply for a two-year opportunity to conduct innovative research.
Yes, you would be eligible if you enroll before we award the diversity supplement in September.
You should do your best to describe your situation. Per the guidelines in PA-20-166 (see below), the application must contain a signed statement from an institutional official stating the candidate is eligible.
“Candidate Eligibility Statement: A signed statement from an institutional official establishing the eligibility of the candidate for support under this program. The statement must include clearly presented information on citizenship of the candidate and a description of how the appointment of this specific candidate would further the goals of this funding opportunity, consistent with the Notice of NIH’s Interest in Diversity (NOT-OD-20-031). The strength of this statement will be considered by the NIH administrative review committee along with all other material provided.”
There is no specific number regarding how many reference letters applicants should submit. We encourage applicants to have at least one letter from their primary mentor. Please use your best judgment in including letters of support or references. You may also consult guidance on Letters of Support and SF 424 instructions on Letters of Support.
Yes, if they are your institutional officials, it is fine to obtain signatures from College Deans to verify the candidate’s statement on eligibility.
NIH establishes stipend and other budgetary limits for National Research Service Award (NRSA) Predoctoral and Postdoctoral Trainees each fiscal year, and the ECHO Program Office uses these limits for the diversity supplements.
- Graduate (Predoctoral) and Health Professional Students (doctoral degree program toward completion of a terminal scientific degree (e.g., Ph.D., Sc.D., M.D.) —Salary, tuition, and fringe benefits, and up to $4,000 each year (with justification) for supplies, publication costs, and travel.
For more guidance on salary, please see PA-20-166, under Section IV. 6. Funding Restrictions, which states: “The total amount requested for salary, tuition and fringe benefits cannot exceed the amount allowable for a first year postdoctoral fellow (i.e., level zero) at the same institution performing comparable work (see NIH Guide announcement, https://grants.nih.gov/grants/guide/notice-files/NOT-OD-20-070.html).”
- Individuals in Postdoctoral Training—Institutional salary rates that are consistent with the level of effort and not to exceed the maximum allowable NRSA stipend level in effect at the time of appointment, fringe benefits, and up to $6,000 (with justification) for supplies, publication costs, and travel.
For more guidance on salary, please see PA-20-166, under Section IV. 6. Funding Restrictions, which states: “The requested annual salary must be in accordance with the salary structure of the grantee institution, consistent with the level of effort. Requested salary may not exceed the maximum allowable NRSA stipend level for postdoctoral fellows in effect at the time of appointment (see: https://grants.nih.gov/training/nrsa.htm).”
No, the parent announcement 20-166 does not allow costs for a research assistant.
Yes, the award allows $6,000 per year for travel and supplies.
Applicants may request Facilities & Administrative costs in accordance with the Institution’s negotiated rate agreement.
The page limit for the research plan is five pages. The specific aims should be part of the five pages.
There are no page limits for the mentoring and training plan. Typical mentoring plans are four to five pages. For the candidate’s statement of eligibility, about one page is typical.
Yes, you should use the NIH Fellowship Biosketch format.
Due to updates in the NIH system, the FORMS-F package for diversity supplements will not be available until later in the month of May. If you encounter this error, please just hit Continue (as if you were submitting for an earlier due date) to get to the FORMS-E package. When the FORMS-F package is available you can use the Copy feature to move your application data to the updated forms, OR you can submit with FORMS-E for June 1 since NIH is accepting administrative supplements on FORMS-E through June 25 per the notice above.
Please also reference this recent blog post on NIH Grant Application Forms.
If you need additional assistance with this issue, please contact the NIH Help Desk:
Application Submission Contacts:
- eRA Service Desk (Questions regarding ASSIST, eRA Commons, application errors and warnings, documenting system problems that threaten submission by the due date, and post-submission issues)
- Finding Help Online: http://grants.nih.gov/support/ (preferred method of contact)
- Telephone: 301-402-7469 or 866-504-9552 (Toll Free)
- General Grants Information (Questions regarding application instructions, application processes, and NIH grant resources)
- Email: GrantsInfo@nih.gov (preferred method of contact)
- Telephone: 301-945-7573
- Grants.gov Customer Support (Questions regarding Grants.gov registration and Workspace)
- Contact Center Telephone: 800-518-4726
- Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
ECHO will fund these diversity supplements for up to two years of support.
The research topic must:
1) address the mission of ECHO,
2) contribute to at least one of the ECHO Program’s five key pediatric outcomes: pre-, peri-, and postnatal; upper and lower airway; obesity; neurodevelopment; or positive health, and
3) contribute to ECHO-wide Cohort science.