Trainee Pilot Grants

Trainee Pilot Grants

The goal of the Center for Foundational Neuroscience Research and Education pilot award program is to offer opportunities and resources to support innovative research for neuroscience trainees that fosters outstanding basic, clinical, and/or translational research. Applications should provide evidence for the strong probability of success in future federal funding applications, increased publication quality, and increased national reputation.


  • Must be new projects that address topics within and/or related to the neurosciences.
  • Open to all graduate students and residents within the WVU Neuroscience community across the university.
  • New projects must have at least two PIs; and must represent two or more Departments. Support and input from the trainee’s mentors are required.


  • 10 June 2023 - RFA
  • 15 July 2023 - Full Application Due
  • 15 September 2023 - Funding Decision


  • Pilot applications do not need to be routed through the Office of Sponsored Programs (OSP). Submit to Becca Rohn at
  • A complete application must include:
    • Cover page (use attached form).
    • Detailed budget including budget justification (use attached form).
    • Research proposal, limited to five pages, must include:
      • Research Strategy
        • Project aims
        • Significance
        • Rationale
        • Innovation
        • Research methods
      • Post-pilot award (proposed) specific aims for the “next step” project anticipated to follow the successful completion of this award; a clear statement of how pilot funding will support future submissions and lead to a competitive federal application with full indirect costs within 2.5 years of the award start date.


  • A review committee who have grant review experience at a national level will review and rank proposals.
  • Applications will be prioritized and approved based upon scoring.


  • Up to 5 awards will be announced no later than 15 September 2023.
  • Funding will not be available until final budgets and documentation of appropriate IRB, animal use approvals, and compliance with all other relevant research study regulations are provided.


  • Funds are limited to one-time support for the project; salaries and travel are not supported by these funds.
  • Awards are capped at $12,000.
  • Funded from 1 October 2023 –30 September 2024 (“no-cost-extensions” may be considered).
  • A progress report is due on 1 March 2024.
  • A final report is due on 1 December 2024.


  • All supported projects will be tracked and those that demonstrate extramural grants funding will be considered in future funding decisions.
  • Awarded investigators are expected to:
    • Publish findings in scholarly journals.
    • Present research at scientific meetings.
    • Acknowledge the WVU CFNRE in all work: This project has been supported in part by the West Virginia University Center for Foundational Neuroscience Research and Education.

Trainee Pilot Award Program 2023

Trainee Pilot Award Cover Sheet

Trainee Pilot Award Budget Template