Announcements

The Office of Pre-Award Services (OPAS) will be closed on Monday, July 4, 2022 for the legal holiday observed by parts of campus. Please take this closure into consideration when calculating your proposal due date to OPAS.

UMass Announces $250,000 in Technology Development Fund Awards. Three awardees are from UMass Amherst. Three awardees are from UMass Amherst:

  • Carlos Gradil, DVM, MS, PhD, DACT, Department of Veterinary & Animal Sciences
  • Alexander Suvorov, PhD, & Richard J. Pilsner, PhD, Department of Environmental Health Sciences
  • Adam Grabell, PhD, and Tauhidur Rahman, PhD, Department of Psychological and Brain Sciences

Reminder: The Office of Pre-Award Services (OPAS) is expecting heavy proposal deadlines on May 16, 2022. The office will be closed for graduation on Friday, May 13th. Proposals and RPPRs due on May 16th must arrive at OPAS via Kuali by 9 a.m. Monday, May 9th, if not sooner.   

If you have proposals that are ready to route early, please do so! Also note that during heavy deadlines it is especially important to submit well in advance of the deadline to ensure no technical issues affect the submission.

The Department of Energy (DOE) Office of Science (SC) published a Dear Colleague letter on April 4, 2022 encouraging university principal investigators who currently receive financial assistance from SC to consider requesting supplemental funds to host or collaborate with students or scientists who have been impacted by the war in Ukraine.

2022-2023 Samuel F. Conti Faculty Fellowship Awards Announced!
Congratulations to:

  • Paul Collins, Jr., Political Science
  • Shelly Peyton, Chemical Engineering
  • Banu Subramaniam, Women, Gender, Sexuality Studies

The Office of Post-Award Management (OPAM) has made updates to the advanced spending request process that uses the Kuali Build Pre-Award Account Establishment Agreement form. Effective March 23, 2022, the following required fields have been added to the form:

  1. Catalog of Federal Domestic Assistance (CFDA) # (if known, or CFDA series; i.e., 93.000)
  2. Prime Sponsor (if UM-Amherst is a Subaward)
  3. Start and end dates requested
  4. Source Account – in the event spending occurs and award is not received or fully executed (to provide an unrestricted source to cover expenses)
  5. Attachments:
    1. Supporting documents from sponsor
    2. Detailed Budget

If you have any questions, please email opam@umass.edu.

In preparation for the upcoming fiscal year, we are rolling out the FY23 fringe rates a bit earlier than usual. The fringe rate for benefited employees has gone up significantly from previous years, so by budgeting these rates early, we will avoid budget shortfalls later. Note: this rate has not been officially approved yet, so it is possible we will see very minor changes in the next few months. This may result in some minor budget adjustments at award time, but we have determined that the benefit to using the higher rate as early as possible outweighs the drawbacks.

Key info:

  1. We will leave the FY22 rates in Kuali for now, so they are available to you for any proposals currently in progress or for any short-term needs that should arise between now and June 30, 2022.
  2. For any new proposals starting after July 1, 2022, please use the FY23 rates.
  3. As with rate changes in the past, we will provide a 1-month grace period for the transition. By May 6, 2022, all new proposals starting after July 1, 2022 should utilize the new fringe rates.

We posted an updated fact sheet with the new rates, and we also have documentation of the proposed rates available upon sponsor request. Please direct any questions you may have to the R&E helpdesk.

R&E is preparing for the upcoming Data Universal Numbering System (DUNS)/Unique Entity Identifier (UEI) change-over scheduled for April 4, 2022. If you have an S2S proposal due before April 4, 2022 that requires forms with the UEI and does not include the updated forms, please reach out to your federal program contact about updating the forms. Kuali S2S utilizes the most current grants.gov packages and if the updated forms are not there, only the sponsor can update the opportunity package. For questions, please submit a ticket to the online R&E Helpdesk.

National Institutes of Health (NIH) Salary Cap Update: Effective January 2022, the Executive Level II salary cap level is $203,700 (12-m).

  • Effective Wednesday, March 9, at 7 a.m., the campus will lift its indoor mask requirement.
  • In keeping with government guidance, individuals will be welcome to wear masks at their own discretion but will only be required to wear masks aboard public transportation (including PVTA buses) and in healthcare facilities (including University Health Services, Public Health Promotion Center, and Center for Counseling and Psychological Health). Masks will also be required in the Center for Early Education and Child Care.
  • The change in masking applies to face-to-face research with human subjects unless required by the research or the facility, e.g., a health care facility.
  • Learn more here.

The spring Research Administration PRO Series workshops are here! This program is a companion to the CORE program offerings, but focuses on specific topics with a greater level of detail.

The spring offerings are as follows:

Research.Gov (FastLane replacement)

March 31, 2022: 9 - 10:30 a.m. via Zoom – register here
June 9, 2022: 9 - 10:30 a.m. via Zoom - register here

Did you know that the National Science Foundation (NSF) FastLane proposal submission system is being phased out? NSF expects to retire it completely by the end of 2022!

Research and Engagement recommends that faculty and staff start using Research.gov NOW to ensure that everyone is comfortable with the system well in advance of FastLane retiring. Please join us as we demonstrate how to set up and submit a proposal using the new Research.gov platform.

This workshop is open to both staff and faculty. Please share with faculty in your area. 

Presenters:

  • Sarah Vega-Liros, Office of Pre-Award Services (OPAS)
  • Ian Raphael, Office of Research Project Management and Training

Cost Sharing

April 7, 2022: 9 - 11:00 a.m. via Zoom – register here

Come join us and learn everything there is to know about cost sharing. We will use case studies as a way to help clarify some of the more difficult concepts.

Topics covered include:

  • Federal and university policies and procedures on cost sharing
  • Cost sharing vs. other forms of commitments
  • What can be used as cost share and how to budget in Kuali
  • Post-award processes and tracking

Presenters:

  • Kristy Reese and Koren Berrio, Office of Pre-Award Services (OPAS)
  • Representatives from the Controller’s Office
     

Please make requests for future topics by emailing ra-training@umass.edu.

Beginning March 1, 2022, the university will no longer require travelers to follow the COVID-19 Travel Exemption Process. Travelers should still carefully follow the instructions here: https://www.umass.edu/ipo/traveling-abroad

An updated Fact Sheet has been posted to the Research and Engagement website to reflect the new Office of Post-Award Management (OPAM) director, Alene Denson. There is also a new link to guidance on budgeting a Cost of Living Adjustment (COLA).

Fact Sheet: www.umass.edu/research/guidance/fact-sheet

Note: If you see a previous version when you download the file, please clear your browser’s cache and download it again.

Posted January 31, 2022

January 10, 2022

Dear Colleagues,

I am very pleased to announce that Alene Denson joined us as the new Director of the Office of Post-Award Management (OPAM), effective January 9, 2022. Dr. Denson succeeds Carol Sprague who retired December 5, 2021, after a distinguished career at UMass Amherst.

Alene has extensive experience in both pre-award and post-award management and administration. She has worked with researchers on budget and proposal development and has experience from proposal submission through award negotiation, acceptance, and internal award management. She has experience with numerous federal agencies including NIH, DOD, DOE, USAID, and others.

Alene comes to us from the University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences where she served as the Director of Grants/Costs Accounting since 2019. Prior to that, she worked for eight years as the Manager for Post-Award at the University of Texas at Arlington. 

Alene earned the Ed.D. in Higher Education Administration from Texas A&M University, an M.Ed in Higher Education Administration/Finance from Georgia State University, and a BS in Business Administration from Wiley College.

UMass search committee chair Jen Donais said, “We are very excited to have Dr. Denson join UMass Amherst in this critical leadership role. The committee was impressed with her knowledge, experience and faculty service ethic, and we are confident these attributes will garner Alene much success in the OPAM Director role and among the campus research community.”

Please join me in welcoming Alene to UMass Amherst.

Regards,

Mike

Michael F. Malone
Vice Chancellor for Research & Engagement
University of Massachusetts Amherst
(413) 545-5270
Assistant: Christine Burnett, caburnett@research.umass.edu

January 5, 2022

Dear Colleagues,

I am delighted to announce the appointment of Burnley Jaklevic as the new Director of the UMass Amherst Technology Transfer Office (TTO), effective December 19, 2021. Burnley previously served as the Interim Director since August 2019.

The TTO oversees the protection, marketing, and licensing of inventions based on the campus research enterprise. Burnley and the TTO team are devoted to streamlining the technology transfer process and providing strong customer service to campus innovators and entrepreneurs. In addition, Burnley and the TTO team work closely with researchers and staff across campus and in the UMass President’s Office to nurture and support faculty and students interested in starting a company based on their inventions. 

Burnley has worked in the TTO as a Senior Licensing Officer since 2012. She has extensive experience in technology commercialization and holds a United States Patent entitled, ‘Methods of identifying and using chemotherapeutic agents.’ Prior to coming to UMass Amherst, she worked for four years as a Licensing Associate in the Office of Technology Commercialization at Texas A&M University System.

Burnley earned her Ph.D. in Molecular, Cellular, and Developmental Biology from the University of Colorado at Boulder and her B.S. in Genetics from the University of California at Davis.

Please join me in congratulating Burnley.

Regards,

Mike

Michael F. Malone
Vice Chancellor for Research & Engagement
University of Massachusetts Amherst
(413) 545-5270
Assistant: Christine Burnett, caburnett@research.umass.edu

A tool for on- and off-campus users to discover who is doing what in research and scholarship at UMass Amherst. The searchable Scholars Network will facilitate collaborations; raise the profile and visibility of research and scholarship; support recruiting outstanding students, postdoctoral researchers, and faculty; and attract extramural funding and fellowships. The network will make the work of all faculty members visible, which is particularly important to early career faculty and members of underrepresented groups, through equitable representation regardless of discipline, rank, gender and/or minority status. An advisory group of faculty, staff, and librarians will provide feedback as we roll out the system. A beta version is planned to go live in early 2022.

The Public Service Endowment Grants (PSEG) internal funding program deadline has been extended to February 4, 2022. These awards of up to $15,000 support special projects and related scholarship that address a community problem or need and build capacity.

Foundation Relations (FR) provides leadership support for administrators and faculty seeking to secure private foundation and non-governmental external foundation funding. Additionally, FR will provide proposal budget development support for foundation proposals for faculty in units that do not have appropriate proposal development support. Request support here.

Learning the Proposal Routing & Approvals process to prevent delays (PDF). The certification and approval process in Kuali can be a bottleneck point for routing proposals, especially when department or college-level approval is needed. We encourage you to review the process. It is also important for administrators to name a Delegate Approver in Kuali as a backup in their absence. For more guidance and assistance:

11/9/21: Update on International Travel Policy and Process. Three main things have changed:

  1. Only Level-4 CDC countries will require exceptional travel review as recommended by the International Risk Management Committee and approved by the Provost.

  2. Updated Covid travel checklist (PDF) for international travel; the misleading quarantine requirement has been removed.

  3. Updated UMass international business travel policy (PDF) to include reference to sanctioned countries and travel with UMass equipment as well as an example illustrating and clarifying the definition of UMass Amherst Related International Travel. 

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