Diversity Supplements for Summer Students

Investigators holding NIH research grants may request supplemental funds to support diverse undergraduate students in a summer research project.

Plan ahead

  • Review the program announcement and any IC-specific requirements. Each institution has its own priorities, submission dates, and submission requirements.
  • This is a supplement to a funded NIH research grant, so it is submitted by the PI, not the student.
  • Many grant mechanisms are eligible for the supplement
  • A candidate cannot be supported by a supplement if s/he is already paid on the grant!
  • The PI should talk to the institute contact for diversity supplements.
  • Submit at least three months before the funding start date
  • Submit via Cayuse to your funding component, typically through the parent grant’s project officer.


Applications include common elements, but refer to IC-specific directions, as each IC has slightly different requirements. Requirements listed here are based on NHLBI supplements.

From the candidate

From faculty

  • Address all review criteria:
    • The qualifications of the candidate including career goals, prior research training, research potential, and any relevant experience.
    • Evidence of educational achievement and interest in science
    • How this particular appointment will promote diversity within the institution or in science nationally.
    • The plan and timeline for the proposed research and career development experiences in the supplemental request and their relationship to the parent grant.
    • Evidence that the proposed experience will enhance the research potential, knowledge, and/or skills of the candidate and that adequate mentorship will be provided.
    • Evidence that the activities of the candidate will be an integral part of the project.
  • PI Biosketch
  • Research Plan/ Research Strategy (4 pages)
    • The research plan should be tailored to the academic level of the candidate and provide detailed discussion of the goals, milestones, and objectives of the proposed research. The proposed research must have the potential to contribute significantly to the research career development of the candidate. Include:
    • A statement that the research proposed was not removed by the Initial Review Group
    • A statement that the proposed research is not an expansion or change in scope requiring peer review (see the NIH Grants Policy Statement)
    • Describe specific career goals of the candidate
    • How the proposed research will be an integral part of the approved, ongoing research of the parent grant, and how the research is related to the parent grant’s goals
    • The scope of the candidate’s proposed research
    • A brief summary of the parent grant, P01 subproject, or contract (typically the abstract or a summary paragraph)
  • Training Plan (4 pages)
    • Sample Training Plan
    • Provide a detailed mentoring plan for the candidate. Include:
    • Specific skills to be acquired
    • A timeline with specific research milestones and other activities the candidate will undertake to obtain independent research funding (e.g., publications, grant submissions, types of independent research support, grant writing workshops) and their relationship to the parent grant.
    • Opportunities to interact with research team and with outside collaborators, as applicable
    • Opportunities to develop independence
    • Opportunities to acquire presentation and publication skills
    • Guidance in the ethical conduct of research (and training in animal and human subjects' protection, if applicable)
    • Description that the PI will utilize Individual Development Plans in accordance with NIH criteria.
    • If the PI is a junior faculty member, you might want to include an experienced co-mentor. Include co-mentor biosketches.
    • As applicable, the role of other investigators who will contribute to research mentoring. Their biosketches do not need to be included.
    • PI’s history of mentoring
  • Research environment/ Project performance site (1 page)
  • Budget and Justification
  • Eligibility Statement- A signed statement from the Principal Investigator and an institutional official establishing the eligibility of the candidate for support under this program

Eligible Individuals:

The supplement is intended to support candidates who will increase diversity on a national or local basis. Candidates must be U.S. citizens or permanent residents. The NIH is interested in encouraging the recruitment and retention of the following classes of candidates:

A. Individuals from racial and ethnic groups that have been shown by the National Science Foundation to be underrepresented in health-related sciences on a national basis: 

Blacks or African Americans, Hispanics or Latinos, American Indians or Alaska Natives, and Native Hawaiians and other Pacific Islanders. 

B. Individuals with disabilities, which are defined as those with a physical or mental impairment that substantially limits one or more major life activities.

C. Individuals from disadvantaged backgrounds (generally only for individuals at undergraduate education levels or below). 

Eligible Grants:

Principal Investigators who hold an active R01, R10, R18, R22, R24, R35, R37, P01, P20, P30, P40, P41, P50, P51, P60, U01, U10, U19, U41, U42 or U54 grant are generally eligible to submit a request for an Administrative Supplement to the parent grant. See the full list of mechanisms in the FOA PA-18-906.

If you have questions: 

  • See the FOA PA-18-906
  • Contact Alison Hall, PhD, Associate Dean for Research Workforce Development akhall@gwu.edu