ISCE Social Science PREP Program | Institute for Society, Culture and Environment

2022-2023 ISCE Social Science PREP Program

Preparing your Research for an Extramural Proposal

The Institute for Society, Culture, and Environment (ISCE) offer an opportunity for a cohort of faculty members in the social sciences who are new to preparing proposals for extramural funding or who have had limited success in the role of PI. The primary goal of this program is to support faculty whose research is likely to lead to external funding. Faculty selected for the program will receive funding to support their preliminary research activities and to mentor to prepare a proposal to be submitted no later than August 2023.


This two-semester, structured program consists of didactic and interactive sessions where cohort members learn (a) the grantsmanship process, how to write a compelling narrative, how to develop a budget; and (b) develop a competitive grant proposal to be submitted to a federal or state agency or private foundation.  Anticipated fall activities include 1-2 sessions per month to review funders’ requirements and develop a compelling 1–2-page concept paper to communicate ideas to a program officer. In the spring semester, monthly sessions of approximately 2-3 hours each will consist of writing, reviewing, critiquing, and discussing cohort member proposals. Cohort members are expected to spend time outside sessions on tailored assignments (fall), their proposals, and brief reviews of their peers' proposals (spring). The ISCE leadership team will provide individually tailored mentorship throughout.


Faculty from any department/program across Virginia Tech’s campuses whose research addresses significant societal concerns that impact people and places through a social sciences lens are eligible to apply. This program prioritises faculty in a tenure/tenure-track position at the assistant or associate level and research faculty (research scientist and assistant/associate professor level) embedded within departments/centers seeking significant external funding. This program does not support proposals for the development of student education/training programs or individual fellowships.


Award recipients must attend scheduled meetings, contact program officers as appropriate, provide feedback on proposal ideas and drafts of cohort members, and submit a grant proposal by August 2023, for which they will serve as PI. In addition, award recipients will provide ISCE with an annual report detailing activities leading up to the submission of the proposal, publications, presentations, and any other grant submissions for three years after completion of the program.


The deadline for applications is September 12, 2022. A single pdf file of the application [last name_ISCE_PREP.pdf] should be emailed to Yancey Crawford ([email protected]).  Notification of awards will be made by the beginning of October 2022. The funds must be spent by June 2023 in accordance with university guidelines.

Review Criteria

A committee consisting of the ISCE leadership team and affiliated faculty with diverse expertise in different focus areas will review the proposals. The review criteria will include the scientific merit, impact and feasibility of the proposed idea, relevance to ISCE’s mission and thematic areas, and documentation of a well-thought plan for submission of an extramural grant. Applicants who are past recipients of ISCE funding will also be evaluated on the outcomes of previous funding.


ISCE anticipates making up to 8 awards of approximately $7,500 per award.


Contact Yancey Crawford ([email protected]) or Isabel Bradburn ([email protected])

To Apply


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