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Procedures for NINDS Re-Entry Supplements

Re-entry supplements support scientists who have taken time off to care for children or parents, or attend to other family responsibilities. 


This supplementary information applies to applications requesting selected research supplements to active National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke (NINDS) grants. Its purpose is to clarify the application process for NINDS grantees and is not intended to replace the detailed information in the program announcement:

The program is designed to bring the scientist’s existing research skills and knowledge up-to-date, so that, during or at the completion of the supplement, the scientist will be in a position to apply for a career development or research award. The supplement must be applied to an existing NIH research grant with a minimum of 2 years of funding remaining.

Program Guidance, Submission, Review, and Funding of Applications

Competitive applications will have the following:

  • Defined research objectives that serve as a basis for the supplementee’s autonomy as a research investigator and transition from the supplementee phase to independence.  The application should include plans for a project that both fits the scope of the parent grant and ultimately evolves into a future project clear of competition and demonstrates ownership/ non-dependence on mentor.  A brief description of the Parent Grant specific aims must be provided.

  • A carefully planned mentoring program developed by the mentor and the supplementee.  The research and training timeline should include both scientific and administrative milestones that will be needed to secure independence.


  • As required by the PA, the candidate must submit a biographical sketch. The personal statement of the candidate's biosketch should address: research objectives and career goals, research experience prior to onset of hiatus, length of and reason for career hiatus, a description of how the candidate has kept current or attempted to keep current their field, and identification of any steps already taken toward re-entry (if any, such as attending scientific meetings).

  • Reference letter(s) from either past mentors or advisors that address the trajectory of the candidate prior to the hiatus.  The supporting letters should provide positive evidence of the productivity level and likelihood of the candidate transitioning to independence prior to the hiatus.

  • Evidence of a publication record in respected peer-review journals within the field.

  • Candidates must have a doctoral degree, such as M.D., Ph.D., or equivalent, and must have been in a postdoctoral or faculty position at the time they left active research.

  • The scientist should not be engaged in full-time paid research activities at the time of re-entry (temporary part-time is acceptable).

  • A maximum of 3 years of support can be awarded. During the first budget period, funds will be provided as an administrative supplement to the parent grant. In subsequent years, continued funding for the supplement is contingent on funding of the parent grant and the re-entry candidate's progress, and cannot extend beyond the current competitive segment of the parent grant.

In general, the duration of the career interruption should be for at least one year and no more than five years. Examples of qualifying interruptions would include child-rearing; an incapacitating illness or injury of the candidate, spouse, partner, or a member of the immediate family; and military service. The program is not intended to support additional graduate training and is not intended to support career changes from nonresearch to research careers for individuals without prior postdoctoral research training.  It is anticipated that at the completion of the supplement, the re-entry scientist will be in a position to apply for a career development (K) award, a research award, or some other form of independent research support.

Candidates who have begun the re-entry process through a fellowship, traineeship, or similar mechanism are not eligible for this program. Awards will be limited to citizens or noncitizen nationals of the United States or to individuals who have been lawfully admitted for permanent residence (i.e., who possess an Alien Registration Receipt Card) at the time of application.

Prior to submission of an application, the Principal Investigator (Applicant) should contact the Program Director responsible for the supplements:

Michelle D. Jones-London, Ph.D.
Program Director
National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke, NIH
Office of Training, Career Development and Workforce Diversity
Telephone: (301) 451-7966

Submission and Receipt of Applications

Funding decisions for supplement applications will only be made three times a year, namely by the end of March, June, and December.

Change in Procedure for Requests to NINDS for Administrative Research Supplements to Promote Diversity and Re-entry in Health-Related Research (PA-08-190 and PA-08-191)

Application Receipt Date Final Funding Decision
November 16th to February 15th March
February 16th to May 15th June
August 1st to November 15th December

Applications received after the cycle cut-off date will be processed and considered for funding in the next funding cycle, i.e., receipt after February 15th, would mean review in June.

In making requests, the grantee institution, on behalf of the PI of the parent grant and in cooperation with the applicant individual, must submit the request for supplemental funds. It is recommended that the request be sent by either 1) electronic submission via eRA Commons  or 2) by emailing a PDF file.

1)  Electronic Submissions: NIH now offers a streamlined system through the eRA Commons for submitting administrative supplements. Login to the eRA Commons, identify the parent award, and prepare an administrative supplement request. All candidates for supplemental re-entry award support must also have a profile in the eRA Commons.

Include the candidate’s eRA Commons Username and attach the Research Experience Plan (described below in the PHS 398 Research Plan Form), Candidate Biosketch (described in the Senior/Key Personnel Form, also called the Applicant Biosketch), and the Candidate Eligibility Statement (described in Other Project Information/Appendix, also called the Applicant Eligibility Statement) in the fields provided. Although only one candidate may be supported under each request submitted using this system, grantees may submit multiple requests on the same parent award.

Budget information should be entered for the grantee institution in the fields provided. There is no template or form available for subaward information; instead, all subaward information should be included as a separate attachment showing the funds requested (by budget period) using the same categories provided for the grantee institution. Also include a budget justification for the subawardee institution in the same file.

For more guidance on option 1, please see the FOA: PA-16-289 and eRA Commons user guide:

2)  Email submissions: The NINDS accepts the submission of Re-entry Supplement applications as a single PDF electronic file.
Electronic files of the application elements from the PHS 398 application package are available from the NIH Website at: The application must be a scanned PDF document so that the appropriate signature of the authorized institutional representative is clearly legible. All elements of the application, including elements not available for download from the PHS 398 application package, namely, transcripts, letters of recommendation, etc. should be scanned as PDF files and included in the application as a single PDF file. The subject line of the email must contain only the phrase, "NINDS RE-ENTRY SUPPLEMENT APPLICATION PDF" - all in caps.

Complete applications using option 2 (email submission) should be sent to:

Review and Award of Applications
Funding decisions are generally dependent on: (1) the merit of the application and the proposed project activities (i.e., the career development/mentorship plan); (2) the potential for continued research progress of the candidate; and (3) the availability of funds.

Last Modified May 25, 2016