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National Science Foundation
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Dear Colleague:

The National Science Foundation (NSF) and the Department of the Navy would like to call your attention to an opportunity for supplemental funding available within the area of nanotechnology for existing grant holders in the NIRT and NSEC programs.

NSF and the Navy jointly encourage proposals to fund students to participate in the jointly-funded NSF-Navy Civilian Service (NNCS) Fellowship-Scholarship Program. This program seeks students at the bachelors, masters, or doctoral level in science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) who wish to commit a portion of their careers to serve at a navy R&D center.

The NNCS program has three goals. The program seeks to foster the production of a diverse additional group of US citizen STEM professionals with advanced degrees to secure the economic future of the nation. The program also seeks to foster stronger ties between the university research community and the Navy in order to apply the latest research in a more timely fashion. Finally, the program seeks to ensure the future of the research enterprise of the US Navy by providing new pathways for talented STEM professionals to enter careers at navy R&D centers.

Project Description:
This program seeks partnerships between navy R&D Centers and university NIRT and NSEC research groups. The university PI is responsible for partnering with a navy R&D center with an interest in similar research projects. The supplemental funding will provide up to two years of fellowship/scholarship support plus a cost of education allowance for eligible students to work in the PI’s university lab. The students will be expected to work on a research topic under the direction of the PI on a problem of mutual interest to the PI and the navy R&D center. At the completion of their degrees, the students will be expected to go to work at a navy R&D center as civilian employees for one year for each year of support they receive.

The navy R&D center will be expected to provide at a minimum co-mentorship of the students (for graduate students, the navy mentor should serve on the student’s thesis committee), and opportunities for the student to take a position at the navy R&D center of the mentor. Navy R&D center personnel participating in this program (center mentors) are to interact with the student and play an active role in the development of a student’s research project and its execution. It is expected that a student will spend some portion of each calendar year working at the collaborating center via a summer internship or similar arrangement.

In addition to funding for students, the PI will receive the opportunity for close interaction with colleagues at Navy research facilities, opportunities for funded professional development, and the institution may receive compensation for administrative time spent on the award. Preference will be given to proposals with more comprehensive or innovative plans for the professional development of the student. For undergraduate students, integration of the research work with the student’s curriculum is encouraged. A plan for a strong effort to recruit a highly qualified and diverse pool of students should be included in the proposal.

It is expected that grantee institutions will provide the infrastructure to recruit and support students, so that a sufficient number of fellowship/scholarship recipients will graduate. Such an infrastructure might include, for example:

  • Recruitment of students, with special consideration to groups underrepresented in STEM fields (i.e., women, racial and ethnic minorities, and persons with disabilities);
  • Academic support and mentoring to support students in making progress toward the degree and to prepare students for the workplace;
  • Mechanisms to ensure retention of fellowship and scholarship recipients to degree completion.

Proposal Format:
NSF’s Fastlane system should be used to prepare and submit these requests for supplemental funding (http://www.fastlane.gov). The Supplemental Funding Request can be accessed by the PI through the “Awards and Status” function, under the “Award and Reporting” functions. The PI should complete the Budget, Justification for Supplement, and Supplementary Docs sections of the Supplemental Funding Request according to the guidelines below.

In the Justification for Supplement, awardee institutions are expected to clearly articulate management and administrative plans for the following program elements:

  • Verification of scholarship candidates' eligibility, including the recipients' academic merit, eligibility for security clearance (see below), and enrollment in a nanotechnology-related program.
  • Provision of scholarship amounts to be used for expenses normally incurred by full-time students in the institution, including tuition, room and board, and equipment. These shall be included in Participant Support costs.
  • Provision of academic-year stipends at the levels specified below.
  • Provisions for tracking the academic progress of students to determine their continued eligibility throughout the academic part of the program.
  • Evaluation of program outcomes.

The Justification for Supplement should not exceed 8 pages.

The ONR will provide assistance in identifying potential partners within the naval research enterprise. Proposals should include a letter of support from the partner navy R&D center indicating a willingness to participate in the Supplementary Docs section.

Eligibility and Stipend:
Eligible undergraduate students will be US citizen juniors or seniors eligible for security clearance with a GPR of 3.0/4.0 or greater. Eligible graduate students will be US citizens eligible for clearance and ready to commence full-time research, having passed any required entrance exams and completed most or all of any required course work, and be involved in projects of mutual interest to their advisors and the Navy. The award amounts will be:



Cost-of-Education Allowance

Undergraduate Scholarship


Actual cost of tuition, fees, room, board and books.

Master’s Fellowship



Doctoral Fellowship



These costs should be included in the budget as participant support. The Navy will administer the contracts with the students and ensure compliance with service requirements. Undergraduate or masters students who complete their degrees while enrolled in the program will be allowed to apply to remain in the program while pursuing a more advanced degree.

Eligibility for Clearance:
After the award is made to the university, students recruited into the program must demonstrate to the Navy eligibility for clearance. The student must provide a vita and proof of United States citizenship to the Navy. A copy of a state birth certificate or passport will suffice. All students will be expected to sign a contract indicating a willingness to provide one year of full time service as a civilian employee of the Navy following the completion of their degree for each year of support they receive. Failure to provide the required service will require the student to repay the full amount of the stipend and tuition assistance received.

Indirect Cost (F&A) Limitations:
No indirect costs may be charged on these supplements, but proposers may request up to 10 percent of the total participant support budget to address the management and administrative costs associated with operating the program and may request up to 5 percent of the total participant support budget to address curriculum, laboratory, and faculty development in support of the program.

The Office of Naval Research will cover the budget for the participation of mentors at the partnering naval facility.

Proposal Review:
A Panel of NSF /Navy staff will review the proposals

Proposal Deadlines:
The deadline for proposals is June 1, 2004. Awards will be made by July 15, 2004.

Funding Available:
We anticipate that we will fund 4-7 supplements for two years at an award size not to exceed $250,000. The anticipated funding amount for the NNCS Fellowship/Scholarship program is $1,000,000 for FY 2004 awards, depending upon quality of proposals and availability of funds.

NSF/ONR Contacts:
Potential PIs are encouraged to contact Dan Stanzione (dstanzio@nsf.gov, 703-292-8121) at NSF to discuss details of the program. Those seeking help with identifying potential Navy partners should contact Bob Kavetsky (Robert_Kavetsky@onr.navy.mil) at ONR.

We look forward to reviewing innovative and competitive proposals.


John Brighton
Assistant Director, Directorate of Engineering


The National Science Foundation (NSF) funds research and education in most fields of science and engineering. Awardees are wholly responsible for conducting their project activities and preparing the results for publication. Thus, the Foundation does not assume responsibility for such findings or their interpretation.

NSF welcomes proposals from all qualified scientists, engineers and educators. The Foundation strongly encourages women, minorities and persons with disabilities to compete fully in its programs. In accordance with Federal statutes, regulations and NSF policies, no person on grounds of race, color, age, sex, national origin or disability shall be excluded from participation in, be denied the benefits of, or be subjected to discrimination under any program or activity receiving financial assistance from NSF, although some programs may have special requirements that limit eligibility.

Facilitation Awards for Scientists and Engineers with Disabilities (FASED) provide funding for special assistance or equipment to enable persons with disabilities (investigators and other staff, including student research assistants) to work on NSF-supported projects. See the GPG Chapter II, Section D.2 for instructions regarding preparation of these types of proposals.

The National Science Foundation promotes and advances scientific progress in the United States by competitively awarding grants and cooperative agreements for research and education in the sciences, mathematics, and engineering.

To get the latest information about program deadlines, to download copies of NSF publications, and to access abstracts of awards, visit the NSF Website at http://www.nsf.gov

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