Proposal Submissions

According to established university policy, faculty who wish to submit sponsored program proposals and receive sponsored program awards from external entities, including the federal, state and local governments, private industry, public and private foundations or other entities, must submit their proposals for internal review and approval prior to submissions to the external agency or organization.

The dean of the School of Engineering or approved designee must approve all sponsored program proposals submitted by or involving any faculty or employee in the School of Engineering. All sponsored program proposals must be coordinated through the School of Engineering Office of Sponsored Programs prior to submissions to the dean or the university’s Office of Sponsored Programs Administration (OSPA).

Services provided

To assist in proposal preparation and submission, the School of Engineering Office of Sponsored Programs will:

  • Draft internal budget spreadsheets and budget justifications

  • Prepare all VCU internal documents required, such as IAF and COI forms, and coordinate all necessary signatures for the forms

  • Prepare all sponsor required administrative and budget forms

  • Provide advice and guidance to principal investigators on sponsor requirements

  • Review prepared proposal documents for compliance with sponsor guidelines prior to submissions to VCU’s OSPA

  • Coordinate the request and receipt of subaward proposal documents

  • Submit all documents and files to the VCU OSPA for review and submission of proposals to the sponsor, VCU OSPA, which is the only office authorized to submit sponsored program proposals on behalf of VCU

Faculty responsibilities

Faculty members must:

  • Provide adequate lead time for assistance to the School of Engineering Office of Sponsored Programs. Faculty members must let the director know at least 30 days in advance of the intent to submit a proposal. The email must include at a minimum the following:

    1. Program announcement number and link

    2. Sponsor name

    3. Title of your proposal

    4. Start date to be proposed

    5. Number of years to be proposed for the project period

    6. Required information to begin a budget draft. At a minimum, budget draft information must include the following details for each year of the project (if costs are the same each year you can indicate for X years/all years):

      • Percent effort for you for both academic and summer periods for nine-month faculty members, or calendar year effort for 12-month faculty members

      • Names of other key personnel faculty, if any, and their effort amounts and role on the project

      • Number of graduate students to budget (we include tuition for all graduate students unless restricted by a sponsor)

      • Any other non-key personnel positions to budget, i.e., undergraduate hourly positions, technicians, etc., and estimated amounts and percent effort if less than 100 percent

      • Estimated costs for nonpersonnel categories, i.e., travel, lab equipment, lab supplies, etc.

      • Subaward organization estimated total budget amounts. If your project involves any organizations external to VCU, provide the contact info for the principal investigator and their administrative contact, and the estimated budget amount for the subaward. Proposals involving an external organization require additional leadtime to allow for the external organization to submit a proposal to VCU signed by their authorized official.

      • Subaccount information. If your proposal involves a key person within a separate department, provide details of costs from the overall budget that will be allocated to them other than their salary effort costs, i.e., travel, graduate student, supply amount, etc.

  • Provide adequate information to allow the internal budget to be drafted and finalized.

  • Respond promptly to requests for information from the School of Engineering Office of Sponsored Programs and VCU’s OSPA.

  • Provide contact information for any external subawardee organization proposal paperwork required to be included within the VCU proposal submission. External subawardee paperwork increases the overall lead time required, so it is very important to provide this information early in the process.

  • Comply with the VCU Office of Research, OSPA required leadtime by having coordinated the proposal through the School of Engineering Office of Sponsored Programs with appropriate leadtime to ensure the OSPA has five working days to review the proposal prior to the sponsor due date.

  • Finalize all proposal documents for submission to the sponsor five working days prior to the sponsor due date.