SUP Research Supplements to Promote Diversity in Health-Related Research

Administrative supplements to currently active NIH research grants to provide support for research experiences for individuals from diverse backgrounds to enhance the diversity of the research workforce.

Program Announcement

Appointee Eligibility

U.S. citizens or permanent residents

High school students, undergraduate students, baccalaureate and master’s degree holders (i.e., post-baccalaureates),  graduate (predoctoral) and health professional students, individuals in postdoctoral training, investigators developing independent research careers 

Institution Eligibility
U.S. domestic institutions

Additional Information
The additional information on this page is to clarify the application process for NINDS grantees and is not intended to replace the detailed information in the program announcement (PA-23-189) 

Carefully Review This Page & Our Webinar
Applicants are encouraged to carefully review this page for all NINDS-specific guidance and watch our webinar on preparing a strong diversity supplement application prior to contacting Dr. Matthews ( about a submission.

On this page, find information on:

Before You Apply

Check that the following are true:

  • At the time of a supplement application, the parent grant has a reasonable period of time remaining (typically, one to two years) at the time of possible award to support an optimal career development experience for the candidate. The diversity supplement funding period cannot go beyond the active period of the parent grant (i.e., during no-cost extension).
  • Candidate has not been previously supported by the parent grant or has only been supported for short periods.
  • Candidate has not been previously supported by a diversity supplement at the same career stage.
  • Applications for baccalaureate and master’s degree holders will facilitate their transition to a graduate or health professional program.
  • Applications for graduate (predoctoral) and health professional students and individuals in postdoctoral training will serve as a foundation for preparing a fellowship or career development award.
  • Applications for investigators developing independent research careers looking for a long-term investigator supplement will be to support recently appointed junior faculty (within 24 months) and the project will enhance their ability to compete for independent grant support. 
  • Parent grants that are funded through the BRAIN Initiative, the HEAL Initiative, or the AD/ADRD Initiative, should read the appropriate Notices and initiative-specific guidance.

Questions? See "When to Contact a Program Officer" and "FAQs"


Application Content

PIs should read the program announcement for what to include in a supplement application. See below for further details and additional information that NINDS requires (under Section IV. Application and Submission Information, 2. Content and Form of Application Submission).

Research Plan

The Research Strategy and Career Development and Mentorship Plan should be no more than 8 pages combined.

Research Strategy

  • Summary of the Funded Grant or Project
    • A brief description of the Parent Grant specific aims must be provided. 
  • Description of the Candidate’s Proposed Research Activities
    • Describe how the research projects relates to one or more aims of the parent project. Note: The research project cannot be identical to the aims proposed in the parent grant. 
    • Describe how the mentored research experiences will expand and foster the research capabilities of the candidate and how they relate to the research goals and objectives of the parent grant. 
    • The research plan should present evidence that the proposed experience is appropriate for the stage of the individual's research development, and that it will significantly enhance the individual's research potential, while furthering the individual's ability to pursue a research career.
    • Provide a timeline for the research proposal that is appropriate for career stage of the candidate.

Career Development and Mentorship Plan

  • A detailed description of proposed research and professional development activities specific to the candidate to expand and foster their research capabilities and skills to successfully move towards their short- and long-term career goals.
  • Details of mentor-candidate interactions. The plan should go well beyond simple laboratory assignments and supervision plans or stating that the candidate will attend seminars or lab meetings. The career development and mentorship plan should be structured, specific and stage-appropriate for the candidate and include parameters such as the frequency of meetings, topics to be discussed, and how progress will be monitored.
  • A projected timeline delineating specific research milestones and professional development activities that will be made in an attempt to secure independent research funding (i.e., anticipated publications, grantsmanship workshops, timeframe for grant submissions and type of independent research support the candidate seeks).
    • NOTE: One of the potential NINDS Special Terms and Conditions included on the Notice of Grant Award for a diversity supplement requesting two or three years of support is that future support for the supplementee is contingent upon the submission of a competitive fellowship (F), career development (K), or equivalent application before the next year funds will be released. These terms will be determined by a number of factors and applied once the application has been reviewed and considered for award.
  • A description of how the PI will assist the candidate in achieving the objectives and goals they have described in their candidate statement (see below).
  • The plan should consider the typical barriers and impediments encountered by all trainees, as well as the unique challenges that individuals from diverse background, including those from underrepresented racial and ethnic groups, individuals with disabilities, or individuals from disadvantaged backgrounds, may encounter in gaining entry and progressing in the biomedical workforce.
  • The role of other investigators who will contribute to the research mentoring should be appropriately described in the application and their Biosketches must be included with the application.
Need help preparing a career development plan?
Applicants are encouraged to review NINDS's "Suggestions for a Good Career Development Plan” for guidance on developing an appropriate, well-tailored CDP.

Mentoring Experience of the PI 

This is a required component for NINDS applications. This section is a separate document and should be submitted under “Other Attachments.”

  • The PI should describe their experience and track record as a mentor and provide evidence of mentoring experience and success, e.g., a list of past trainees and their current positions.
  • If the PI is a junior faculty member, it may be appropriate to include an experienced co-mentor in the development plan.
  • If the PI has previously been awarded a diversity supplement(s), they must describe the following:
    • The outcome of the previous supplement(s) including the current status of the candidate(s) (i.e., title of current position and name of institution)
    • The outcomes of the prior development/mentorship plan
    • Any unexpected positive or negative occurrences that affected specific aspects of the development/mentorship plan or success of the candidate(s)
    • How these prior experiences influenced the development/mentorship plan proposed for the current candidate(s).

Candidate Biosketch

  • The Personal Statement section of the candidate's NIH Biosketch must outline short- and long-term research objectives and career goals and describe how the planned activities in the diversity supplement proposal are related to or will facilitate achievement of their educational and/or career goals.
  • Predoctoral, postdoctoral, and junior faculty-level candidates are expected to include specific plans to submit individual grant applications during the period of supplement support.
  • Grades must be reported in the Biosketch (for more details, see instructions in the SF424 (R&R) Application Guide) for high school, undergraduate, baccalaureate and master’s degree holders, graduate (predoctoral) and health professional students only.
    • List courses and grades by institution and year 
    • A formal transcript is not necessary


Allowable Costs and Other Provisions

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.


High School Students

Undergraduate Students

Baccalaureate/ Master's Degree Holders

Graduate (Predoctoral) And Health Professional Students

Individuals in Postdoctoral Training

Investigators Developing Independent Research Careers 

Salary & Fringe Benefits

Consistent with applicant Institutional salary policies, rates that exceed minimum wage must be justified.

Consistent with applicant Institutional salary policies, rates that exceed $12.00/hour must be justified.

Consistent with applicant Institutional salary policies, but cannot exceed $35,000 total for both salary and fringe benefits.

Consistent with applicant institutional salary policies, total compensation (salary, fringe benefits, and tuition remission) cannot exceed zero level NSRA postdoc stipend.

Must be in accordance with the salary structure of the grantee institution, consistent with the level of effort, and may not exceed the maximum allowable NRSA stipend level for postdoctoral fellows in effect at the time of appointment.

Consistent with applicant Institutional salary policies, but cannot exceed $85,000 total for both salary and fringe benefits.

Supplies & Travel


$200 per month

$3,000 per year

$4,000 per year

$6,000 per year

$10,000 per year





(see Program Announcement)










Duration of Support

Equivalent of at least 3 months effort

Equivalent of at least 3 months of full-time effort

One year. If a supplement is awarded, the PI can request a 1-year extension. See below for more details.*

No more than three years

No more than two years

No more than two years

*Extension requests for Baccalaureate/Master's Degree Holders

Baccalaureate/Master's Degree Holders are eligible to receive one year of support from the NINDS Diversity Supplement program with an option to request an extension for a second year. Extensions are only intended to support individuals who have not had substantive research opportunities (e.g., completed a thesis research project or engaged in more than 2 years of undergraduate and/or postbaccalaureate research training) prior to training on the diversity supplement. Principal Investigators should submit via email a 1-2 page extension request that provides updates on research progress and accomplishments of the candidate as a result of the first year of diversity supplement support and provide evidence to show the candidate requires additional training for admission to graduate programs to Dr. Matthews ( and the parent grant program officer. Extension requests should be submitted at least 3 months before the Year 1 supplement period ends.


Submission and Receipt of Applications


Application Receipt Window

Final Funding Decision

Earliest Start Date


August 1 to November 15

End of December

January 1


November 16 to February 15

End of March

April 1


February 16 to May 15

End of June

July 1

Applications received after the cycle cut-off date will be processed and considered for funding in the next funding cycle.

PLEASE NOTE: If your parent grant is funded through the BRAIN Initiative, the HEAL Initiative, or the AD/ADRD Initiative, but your supplement application lacks the appropriate Notice number in the Agency Routing Identifier field (box 4B) of the SF424 R&R form, your application might not be considered for funding. Please be sure to visit the appropriate supplement webpage for guidance. 

For more guidance, please see the eRA Commons user guide.


Review and Award of Applications

Applications are reviewed by a committee of NINDS program staff. 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
  3. The availability of funds


When to Contact a Program Officer

Contact Dr. Matthews ( if you have questions/concerns about the following:

  • The scope of the supplement research proposal
  • Career development and mentoring plan activities
  • Time remaining on active portion of the parent grant
  • Duration of support for a candidate who is currently by the parent grant
  • Reapplying for a supplement that was not funded

Note: Questions about the research plan and scope may need to be discussed with the program officer of the parent grant to which you are applying.



Q: If an individual was supported previously on a diversity supplement, are they eligible to receive support again under this mechanism?

A: An individual may receive support from only one supplement mechanism at a given career stage. However, an individual may be supported by more than one diversity supplement during the development of their research careers (i.e., one as an undergraduate student, one as a predoctoral student, etc.).

Q: Can I apply for multiple diversity supplements on the same parent grant?

A: Yes. NINDS will support more than one supplement per parent grant. Detailed information regarding this policy can be found here at More Mentees per Grant.

Q: Can I have multiple candidates on the same diversity supplement application?

A: No. Each candidate must have their own application with a research and career plan tailored to the specific candidate.

Q: I have a diversity supplement, but my trainee is leaving the lab before the supplement ends. Can I fund another individual on this same diversity supplement?

A: No. Once the individual approved for funding can no longer be supported on the diversity supplement, the supplement must be terminated. To terminate the supplement, contact both the parent grant program officer and Dr. Matthews for further information.

Q: My trainee received individual funding (e.g., an NIH NRSA, HHMI Fellowship, Burroughs Wellcome Fund Fellowship), can we continue to support them with diversity supplement funds to augment their stipend/salary or supplies/travel costs?

No. Once an individual receives independent funding, the diversity supplement must be terminated. To terminate a supplement, contact both the parent grant program officer and Dr. Matthews for further information.

Q: I have an underrepresented trainee in my lab. Can I support my trainee on a diversity supplement to my collaborator’s parent grant?

A: No. You must be a PI, MPI, or Site PI of a parent grant to support a trainee on a diversity supplement application. 

Q: Do I need to include letters of support or references?

A: References/letters of support are optional but may be included.

Q: I’m on an NIH study section. Can I have an extension for submitting my diversity supplement application?

A: No. Due to the volume of applications, we must complete our reviews on a strict timeline that does not allow for late submissions.

Q: Is the candidate supposed to write the supplement application?

A: The PI and candidate should work together to prepare the diversity supplement application. While the application is submitted by the PI, there should be evidence of the intellectual contribution of the candidate to the application.

Q: What information is to be included in the progress report submitted by the grantee institution for the parent grant?

A: The progress report should describe accomplishments during the past year, including career development and scientific accomplishments, publications, meetings attended, grant applications submitted/awarded. 


How Do Diversity Supplements Impact Careers in Biomedical and Behavioral Research?
In 2022, the NIH hosted a seminar to discuss how diversity supplements influences career pathways of individuals from diverse backgrounds. NINDS data shows that diversity supplements are achieving its goal of enhancing diversity in biomedicine.

Relevant Policy Notices

NOT-NS-21-047 Notice to Encourage Eligible NINDS Alzheimer's Disease and Alzheimer's Disease-Related Dementias (AD/ADRD) Awardees
NOT-NS-20-107  Notice of Special Interest to Encourage Eligible NIH HEAL Initiative Awardees to Apply for PA-20-222: Research Supplements to Promote Diversity in Health-Related Research (Admin Supp - Clinical Trial Not Allowed)
NOT-MH-19-038 Notice to Encourage Eligible NIH BRAIN Initiative Awardees to Apply for PA-18-906 Research Supplements to Promote Diversity in Health-Related Research (Admin Supp - Clinical Trial Not Allowed)
NOT-OD-18-111 Notice of Requirement for Electronic Submission of Research Supplements to Promote Diversity in Health-Related Research and Upcoming System Validation
NOT-OD-18-105 Revision: Research Supplements to Promote Diversity in Health-Related Research (Admin Supp)


Marguerite Matthews, Ph.D. | Program Director

Anahid Ebrahimi, Ph.D. | Health Program Specialist


NINDS OPEN Conversations about NIH Diversity Supplements

OPEN Stage: NIH & NINDS Opportunities for Entrepreneurship

NIH Small Business Programs

Women-Owned and Socially and Economically Disadvantaged Businesses

Entrepreneurial Resources

Diversity Resources

Awardee Success Stories

Loan Repayment Program

How to Apply