Faculty Pilot/Seed Grants to Attract External Funding

Given the complexities experienced by faculty right now, we are extending the deadline for proposals to Tuesday, April 7, 2020 by 11:59 PM EDT.  

Please note: The deadline cannot be extended beyond this date to ensure that all awarded projects are able to start by July 1, 2020. 

FY21 Request for Proposals

The Office of Research invites grant proposals for faculty projects that have strong potential to attract external funding. Awards of up to $15,000 will be made to support preliminary studies to position faculty to develop and submit competitive external proposals as well as for acquisition of data for resubmissions of declined external proposals. Potential and plans to attract external funding are the primary criteria.  PIs (Principal Investigators – faculty project directors) must demonstrate a clear and logical plan linking the proposed grant to external funding opportunities and commitment to pursue those opportunities. The Faculty Pilot/Seed Grants are contingent upon availability of funds.

We intend to reserve some funds for, and thus particularly encourage applications from:

  • PIs preparing revised submissions in light of feedback received from the funding agency.
  • PIs of projects in the social and behavioral sciences as well as those who have an interdisciplinary nature including the social and behavioral sciences.


Full proposals must be submitted to researchdev@kennesaw.edu no later than 11:59 p.m. EST on April 7, 2020.   The subject line of the email should be: FY21 OVPR Pilot Grants. Combine the proposal components, including the budget, into a single PDF. Name your file using the following format: Last name_First initial_FY21OVPR_abbreviated project name. For example: Corso_P_FY21OVPR_HospitalSleep.  

Once you have emailed your pdf proposal, please consider this your confirmation notice that your application has been received.

See the Proposal Components section for instructions on how to prepare a proposal.


Please also check the FAQ page for more additional information.


Applicants must be tenured or tenure-track KSU faculty and be current with the Office of Research reporting requirements from prior awards.


All amounts should be in whole dollars. The total may not exceed $15,000. Eligible costs include:

  • Salary: Replacement costs for course release(s) at College/Department payment rate or summer salary plus fringe. It is the PI’s responsibility to secure permission from the chair/dean for course releases. The Office of Research must receive concurrence for a course release by email from the chair/dean. Summer salary can only be paid in May or June 2020. If funded, you will need to make timely arrangements for summer payroll.
  • Supplies, materials, software.
  • Equipment (useful life of more than one year and cost of $5,000 or more).
  • Travel necessary to produce a competitive proposal – you must document how the travel directly benefits the proposal – in general, conference travel will not be allowed unless the direct benefit to the proposal is sufficiently explained.  
  • Consultants, including provision of applicable vendor services.
  • Incentives for human subjects; costs for animal purchase and/or care.
  • Other direct costs normally associated with sponsored projects. Indirect costs are not allowed in this internal grant program.

Please note: All expenses must post to KSU’s financial system by June 30, 2021; therefore, all project expenses other than summer salary must be in KSU’s system by May 15, 2021. Any expenses that do not follow these guidelines will be charged to the PI’s department.


All documents should be 11-point font, with at least half-inch margins. You certainly do not have to use all the space allowed by margins, spacing and page limits.

  1. Current or prior internal support – one page maximum.
    1. Results of Prior Office of Research Support (if applicable). Provide the following information for any prior Faculty Pilot/Seed Grant support:

      • The title of the project;
      • A summary of the results of the completed work, including accomplishments;
      • Publications or other products resulting from the grant;
      • Proposals for external funding submitted as a result of the grant. Proposals from former or current recipients of Faculty Pilot/Seed Grants who have not submitted external proposals are unlikely to be funded.
    2. Other internal support. List any other internal support you have had as an investigator (not necessarily on the proposed project) in the last 3 years. This could include departmental or college support, start-up, GRAs, CETL funding, etc. List any proposals currently under consideration as ‘pending’ support.

  2. Project Narrative – five pages maximum. The project narrative should provide a clear statement of the work to be undertaken and should include sufficient background for a knowledgeable general audience to understand the importance of the work. Figures legends and tables are counted in the 5-page limit. URLs that provide information related to the proposal may be included but will only be read at the discretion of the reviewers, i.e. do not assume that they will follow the link. Narrative should include the following sections: 

    1. PROJECT DESCRIPTION: This section should include i) sufficient background for a knowledgeable general audience to understand the importance of the work, and ii) a narrative of the plan including, descriptions of specific aims/objectives, approaches (methods/procedures), and explanations of the significance of the work

    2. RELATION TO OTHER WORK: Describe i) how the project relates to the PI’s long-term research goals, and ii) the relation to other work in progress by the PI under other support (overlap)

    3. TIMETABLE: a schedule for which efforts, results, publication, and external submission(s) are anticipated.
  3. Targeted External Funding Opportunities – one page maximum.  Include the following information for all targeted proposals:

    • Potential – how will success in the proposed work position you to compete for external funding? Indicate here if you meet the targeted agencies’ criteria for early career or new investigator.
    • Funding agencies, programs or solicitations and a brief explanation why you are targeting those opportunities. If you have already contacted program officers and/or submitted proposals and received feedback, include this information. (Contacting POs for preliminary feedback on appropriateness of the proposal for the funding mechanism, etc. is highly encouraged.).
    • List any external proposals already submitted on the project. Include reviews as an addendum if resubmission is being prepared (does not count against page limit). A statement of how the reviewers’ critiques will be addressed will strengthen your proposal and is appropriate here.
  4.  References Cited – no page limit.

    • Reference information should be cited in a form appropriate to the field, preferably with links to allow reviewers easy access if desired.
  5. Budget - one page.  Please use the provided budget template spreadsheet located online at link below and transfer the finished table into the final document: https://research.kennesaw.edu/researchdev/docs/FY21-FacultyPilotSeedGrant-BudgetTemplate.xlsx
  6. Budget Justification – one page maximum. Justify all expenses.

  7. Biosketch(es) - One biosketch per PI/co-PI. Use a format appropriate to the agency or organization to which external proposals will be submitted. PIs are strongly encouraged to include links to a Google Scholar profile, NCBI My Bibliography, ORCID, Digital Commons or other online reference tool to ease evaluation of publication records.


By submitting a proposal, each PI/co-PI certifies that:

(1) the information submitted within the application is true, complete, and accurate to the best of her/his knowledge;
(2) any false, fictitious, or fraudulent statements or claims may subject her/him to criminal, civil, or administrative penalties;
(3) she/he agrees to accept responsibility for the scientific conduct of the project and to provide the required progress report if a grant is awarded as a result of the application;
(4) she/he agrees to accept the obligation to comply with award terms and conditions and University's policies and procedures if an award is made as a result of this application;
(5) she/he acknowledges the obligation to assign inventions and patents to KSURSF that are conceived or developed in connection with the use of Office of Research Faculty Pilot/Seed grants;
(6) she/he acknowledges the obligation to promptly report and fully disclose the conception and/or reduction to practice of potentially patentable inventions to the Kennesaw State University Office of Research. Such inventions shall be examined by KSURSF to determine rights and equities therein in accordance with the Policy.