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Frequently Asked Questions


1. Why do I have to submit my proposal through the school?

It is in your best interest to submit your proposal through the school and not on your own. School policy requires all grant applications and contracts to be submitted through the School. Most funding agencies will only fund institutions, not individuals, and therefore require institutional endorsement. But even in those instances when institutional endorsement is not required, there are still at least two advantages to the institutional review process: (1) receiving assistance with the application process, (2) the school is aware that you have a pending proposal and is prepared to administer your funds in a timely manner upon notification of award.


2. Who signs my proposal?

Review your application forms carefully to identify all of the necessary signatures. In addition to the signatures required on the application itself, the JHU information sheet requires four signatures: the Principal Investigator, the Department Administrator, the Department Chairperson, and the Research Administration reviewer. University endorsement for grants is usually given by Alexandra McKweon, Associate Dean for Research Administration.


3. How long does the signature process take?

Signatures are generally not given on demand; those who are signing your proposal should be given sufficient time to review your proposal before endorsing it. It is suggested that you allow at least one week for the signature process.


4. Do I have to be a US citizen to apply for a fellowship?

Check the program announcement; many, but not all have citizenship requirements.


5. Can I apply for more than one fellowship?

Yes, you may apply for as many fellowships for which you meet the eligibility criteria.


6. If I am funded for more than one fellowship, can I accept both?

Generally, no. Most program announcements will specify that if awarded, you may not receive any other support from any other external source. This does not include departmental scholarship money or awards received from the School's Endowed Student Support Funds.


7. If I receive an award, will I have to be registered full time?

It depends upon what has been outlined as eligibility requirements in the program announcement. For example, the Individual NRSA does require students to be registered full time.


8. Will I be allowed to work if I receive a fellowship?

Many fellowships, such as the NRSA, will require you to devote 40 hours per week to your fellowship program. Should you choose to be employed beyond that, you must be certain that your employment will not interfere with your fellowship program. Also, you may not receive compensation from two federal sources supporting the same research.


9. When should I submit for IRB approval?

You MUST have IRB approval prior to any contact with human research subjects. For information about the process, visit the IRB website. Prior to submitting a research proposal that will involve human research subjects,all personnel associated with the project must complete the CITI online training module.


10. Is it really worth my time and effort to apply for a grant?

YES! Besides the potential financial support you will receive if awarded, there is prestige involved in receiving a grant, as well as the practical experience of writing and submitting a grant proposal.

Do you have a question that has not been answered?

Please submit your question to: sfr@jhsph.edu.

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