SPGA FAQ

Answers to Frequently Asked Questions

Download a printable PDF version of the SPGA FAQ.

Approval

Who do I need to get approval from?

Your proposal will need to be approved by your Department Chair, the Dean, and the SPGA.
The SPGA office will route to the Department Chair and the Dean for the requisite approvals.

Awards

How much is the typical grant award or sponsorship amount?

There is no ‘typical’ grant award or sponsorship amount. Grants and sponsorships range from small amounts to well over $1,000,000. Typically, federal grant awards will be more than foundation grants or industry sponsorships, but not necessarily. The best way to decide how much to ask for in a grant proposal or sponsorship is to first determine how much funding your project requires.

If my grant is awarded, how do I get the money?

An index for your project will be set up in the SPGA office once the funds for your project are received.

Budget

A detailed budget and budget justification are required with every proposal, even if the sponsor requires a general budget or only a total dollar amount. Before Oregon Tech can authorize a proposal, it must be reviewed for compliance with all university, state, and federal budget policies by the SPGA office.

If a funding agency has its own budget guidelines and forms, budget categories and/or terminology may be different than what is used on Oregon Tech forms. Always rely on the requirements specified by the funding sponsor/agency. Sponsor’s indirect CAP rates are determined by the funding agency and will be considered in lieu of Oregon Tech Federal indirect rate.

If you know a position will be required but the students that has not yet been identified at the time the proposal is being submitted, indicate To Be Named or TBN in place of the name.

Oregon Tech have specific guidelines and procedures that must be followed during budget preparation.

Faculty Salaries

Name of the employee.
Monthly or annual salary
All applicable Cost-of-living adjustments (COLA).
Other Payroll Expenses (OPE) at rates.
Personnel work duties should be discussed in the budget justification

Student

If you know a position will be required but the students that has not yet been identified at the time the proposal is being submitted, indicate To Be Named or TBN in place of the name.

Student hourly rates

Determined at the discretion of the PI and based on the complexity of the work.

Undergraduate Students: Rates for student time in sponsored project budgets ranges from hourly rates $10 - $25/hr. depending on type of project and source of funds. Example, $1500/mo. for full-time, grant-supported internships. See Student Pay Guidelines.

Student stipend rates

Determined by sponsor guidelines, in association to the grant, and graduate courses.

Graduate Students: Stipends range from $750 - $3000 / month, depending on type and amount of work and source of funds. Currently the MS MFG OIT grad program offers tuition remission for Teaching Assistantships, plus stipend of $750 /month (0.3 FTE).

Research Assistantships may be budgeted at $1500 - $5,000/month, depending on type and amount of work, and funding sources guidelines (Applies to Federal Grants).

Fringe Benefit Rate

All grants require OPE: When figuring salaries for faculty or staff for grants, OIT-OPE rate is calculated at .40 for release time based on the grant performance period.
.08 for OPE for 3-month (Summer)
.32 for OPE for 9-month faculty.
.40 for OPE for 12-month faculty.
.10 OPE for Student stipends.

Travel

Domestic: Local travel (Conference/Research meetings)

Travel Reimbursements

International (Foreign) Travel- (Requires SPGA approval)

Consultants

Consultants provide expert advisory or other services for brief or limited periods of time during the period of performance.

Documentation from a consultant should be in the form of a letter that includes his or her name, daily rate of pay (and justification for the rate of pay), number of days, travel costs, and a statement indicating his or her willingness to participate in the project or program.

Equipment

Equipment is identified as an item of non-expendable, tangible personal property, meaning it can be appraised for value, has an acquisition cost of $5,000 or more, is free-standing or can stand alone, and has a normal useful life expectancy of one year or more.

Each equipment item should be listed individually on the budget form, and their estimated cost should also include sales tax, shipping, and assembly, if necessary.

Supplies & Materials

Items that cost less than $5,000 are not considered equipment and belong in the Supplies and Materials category of the budget.

Subaward

The budget justification includes the name of the subaward entity, their total costs, and a general statement about what aspect of the research they will be performing and how their participation will benefit the project or programs

Participants Cost

Research incentive for the participants. Such as Cash/Gift Cards

Indirect

Oregon Tech’s federal indirect rate is .50 to all programs, expires 6/30/2020.

This rate is applied to all personnel salaries & wages in the grant proposal.

If students are paid educational stipends, then indirect is not applied to the stipends.

If students are paid compensation as wages (hourly), and are considered employees, then indirect is applied to their salaries.

Consultation

What happens after I have a consultation with the SPGA?

The short answer is that it depends on the type of funding sought and the project. Part of the consultation will be to define next steps in the process, which will depend on how far along in the development process your project is. Typically, after an initial consultation, the SPGA will develop a prospect list for you which will help to initiate the proposal process.

Cost Share Guidance

Cost share guidance is usually included in the grant guidelines.
Cost share from Oregon Tech may include these items with the approval of the chair, dean, and provost:
- Oregon Tech faculty salaries
- Use of specialty university resources or equipment
- Industry partner – private contributions, such as paid internships or other in-kind services or equipment from industry.

Effort Reporting

Personnel Activity Reporting (PAR): The personnel activity reporting is the method of verifying employee effort on federally sponsored grant awards at Oregon Tech. An activity report is generated for each federal grant award. Oregon Tech processes personnel activity reports on a calendar quarter basis. The PI reviews and certifies their effort, and may also be involved in certifying effort for student employees working on his/her award.

Funding

I'm interested in getting funding for research, a project or program. Where do I start?

An easy place to start is to email the SPGA at spga@oit.edu, and set up a consultation. This consultation will help to identify what steps need to be taken to develop a proposal. The more specifics you have developed regarding your project prior to the consultation the more productive the consultation will be.

Can graduate students use the SPGA to find funding opportunities?

Yes; however it should be noted that for most research proposals to federal entities, the graduate student will need to work under a faculty PI.

What kinds of things can I get funding for?

A very wide variety of things are eligible for funding. That said, not every sort of project will be funding or sponsorship-eligible.

Federal RFPs (Request for Proposals) and FOAs (Funding Opportunity Announcements) tend to have more specific criteria than private foundation or industry sponsorship applications; however, federal RFPs are also larger and will fund things that private foundations won’t. Generally speaking, the more developed and robust your project is the better chance you have of getting it funded. This can mean different things depending on the project, but generally grants are not awarded for things like discrete equipment purchases and capital investments. If you are looking for a discrete piece or pieces of equipment, your best chance of funding is to go through the internal Resource Budget Committee (RBC) process. Equipment may be a component, however, of a larger grant project.

The best projects, and therefore the projects most likely to get funded, will have specific objectives and outcomes, defined modes of sustainability and evaluation, a strong statement of need, and detailed projected cost and timeline estimates. This is true for both federal and foundation grants as well as industry sponsorships.

If you have a potential project that you think might be funding-eligible, the best thing to do is schedule a consultation with the SPGA.

What type of project has the best chance of getting funded?

The best way to go about creating a strong and competitive proposal is to develop a project that identifies a documented need, creates a solution to address that need in a robust and systemic way, has identified specific outcomes, has a means for sustaining itself beyond the grant period and has evaluation metrics built into the project to determine the degree of success of the project. Foundations, industry and federal entities look for projects that tend to have direct or potential benefit beyond those immediately impacted by the project.

Thinking broadly and creatively about your grant project is greatly to your advantage. Single purchases for things such as equipment or travel are highly unlikely to be funded through a grant. However, as part of a larger project, such expenses may be able to be included as a necessary part of a robust project.

Our department is interested in receiving funding for an endowed chair/endowed lab/etc. Can we apply for a grant for this?

No. Endowments or endowed chairs/equipment/etc. are almost never grant or sponsorship eligible. Named chairs, labs and the like are almost always established through a major gift, which is distinct from a grant or sponsorship. If you have questions about major gifts, please call Tracy Ricketts, Director of Development, at the Oregon Tech Foundation.

I think my department may have funds from a current grant in our Foundation account. How can I find out?

If you have questions regarding your department account at the Oregon Tech Foundation, please contact Tracy Ricketts, Executive Director of the Oregon Tech Foundation.

Grant

How long does it take to receive a grant or sponsorship?

It depends. Some awards can have turnaround times as short as two or three months. However, the average grant award process is closer to six to nine months. Some grants may take a year to secure.

What is the difference between a grant and a sponsorship?

Generally speaking, a sponsorship is a specific agreement between a sponsoring agency and Oregon Tech that provides support for a specific project that has specific intended outcomes and deliverables. It involves some sort of mutual exchange. A grant may be a sponsorship, in which it as specific outcomes and deliverables, or it may be closer to a gift. Generally speaking, however, when we use the word ‘grant’ we mean it closer to the meaning of sponsorship, wherein specific outcomes of the funding are established.

Grants are generally issued by foundations, corporate foundations, and federal entities; whereas a sponsorship is an award given usually by an industry entity to sponsor a project that often has some direct connection to the work of the sponsoring business or corporation. However, a federal grant, for example, providing funding for research may also be considered project sponsorship.

What is the difference between a federal and a foundation grant?

Federal grants are grants issued through a federal agency such as the NIH, the NSF, the DOE, etc. These grants are usually announced through a Request for Proposal (RFP) or Funding Opportunity Announcement (FOA) and have relatively strict guidelines as to what projects will qualify for funding. They are evaluated by a point system by a committee of reviewers.

Foundation grants are grant awards from private foundations. Foundations may be managed by families, corporations, or other private entities. They typically, but not always, have looser project guidelines than federal RFPs, though the permissible cost categories may be more strict.

What is the difference between a grant or sponsorship and a contract?

A contract is used as a tool of procurement for a specific good or service. A contract is an agreement between the university and another entity that outlines a defined exchange of goods and/or services. Contracts may be issued as part of a grant. If Oregon Tech enters into a contract with another entity as part of a larger sponsored project where Oregon Tech is not the fiscal agent, these are treated as contracts, not grants or sponsorships.

A grant or sponsorship provides financial support for a project or program. They typically have less defined deliverables and actions, but still require regular reporting of outcomes.

What is the difference between a gift and a sponsorship or grant?

Gifts to the university are usually made to the Oregon Tech Foundation, are irrevocable, and do not require anything in return such as specific deliverables, outcomes or reporting. In some cases, a grant may be considered a gift.

Grants and sponsorships are typically made contingent upon the completion of certain outcomes and deliverables, such as research, program delivery, etc. They can be revoked in the event that the conditions agreed upon for receipt of the sponsorship are not met. They are limited in the sorts of items which may be included in the costs of the program.

What is the likelihood of receiving a grant or sponsorship?

It depends. Nationwide statistics on success rates for grants don’t paint a particularly accurate picture of the likelihood of receiving a grant as they do not take into account many of the factors affecting sponsorship or grant success. The success of winning a grant or sponsorship is highly dependent on the quality of the proposal and the fit between the sponsoring agency and the project.

Do I need to meet with a gift officer from a foundation, a focal from a sponsoring agency, or a program officer from a federal entity prior to applying for a grant?

Working directly with a representative from a foundation, business or federal entity may greatly improve your chances of, but by no means guarantee, your project being funded. However, it is generally recommended. In many cases, the SPGA may be able to serve as a liaison between you and the grant-making entity. In some cases, however, it will be recommended that the PI or key personnel speak directly with the program officer after notifying the SPGA of your intention to do so. The SPGA will track activity between faculty and staff and funding entities to ensure that competing proposals and overlapping funding requests are avoided.

I’m interested in a foundation grant, but they only award to organizations with 501(c)(3) status. Can I apply?

Yes. The SPGA will help you apply to foundation grants requiring 501(c)(3) tax-exempt status through the Oregon Tech Foundation.

I’m working with a business and we are interested in applying for an SBIR/STTR grant. Can you help me?

Yes. SBIR/STTR grants are types of sponsorship. Most likely, the business will be the lead fiscal agent for the proposal, with Oregon Tech acting as a partner, especially in Phase I projects. If you’re interested in SBIR/STTR awards, the best place to start is to call the SPGA to discuss your project.

Indirect Allocation – Approved in Policy

Building Use Reserve 10% (7.5% Klamath Falls; 2.5% Wilsonville)
OIT Institutional Income 10%
Maintenance Reserve 5%
Provost 25% -Includes SPGA
College 15%
Dept. 15%
PI 10% 
Library 10% 

Indirect Rates

Oregon Tech’s federal indirect rate is .50 to all programs, expires 6/30/2020.
This rate is applied to all personnel salaries & wages in the grant proposal.
If students are paid educational stipends, then indirect is not applied to the stipends.
If students are paid compensation as wages (hourly), and are considered employees, then indirect is applied to their salaries.

Sponsor's indirect CAP rates

Determined by the funding agency and will be considered in lieu of Oregon Tech Federal indirect rate listed above.

Other Payroll Expenses (OPE) Rates

All grants requires OPE: When figuring salaries for faculty or staff for grants, OIT-OPE rate is calculated at .40 for release time based on the grant performance period.
- 0.08 for OPE for 3-month (Summer)
- 0.32 for OPE for 9-month faculty
- 0.40 for OPE for 12-month faculty.  
- 0.10 OPE for Student stipends.
 

Principle Investigator

Do all projects need a principle investigator or key personnel?

Yes. All projects need a principle investigator (PI) or key personnel in charge of leading and managing the project. The SPGA does submit grants on behalf of Oregon Tech that do not require a PI or key personnel, such as grants for the scholarship fund, certain capital investment projects and the like. But typically a project cannot move forward without a designated PI or key personnel.

Proposal

How soon do I need to inform the SPGA about my intention to submit a proposal?

You should contact the SPGA about your proposal as soon as you yourself decide to apply. The more assistance you need with your proposal, the earlier you should contact the SPGA - several months prior to the submission deadline is ideal. All completed materials (proposal forms as well as internal forms) must be submitted to the SPGA at least two weeks before the submission deadline to ensure timely submission.

Who else do I need to inform I am working on a proposal?

It depends on the proposal. Generally, your Department Chair and the Dean should all know if you are planning to submit a proposal for a project.

Depending on the proposal, it may also be necessary to include the Office of Strategic Partnerships, the Office of Innovation and Technology Transfer, or the Oregon Tech Foundation.

Once I have a proposal developed, who submits the proposal?

The SPGA will submit your proposal. This is to ensure that all the necessary components, both for the sponsoring agency and Oregon Tech’s internal processes, are in place. It is also to simplify the process for faculty and staff and make applying for sponsorships and grants easier.

Are there resources to help me write the proposal?

The SPGA can offer a limited amount of grant writing assistance. The SPGA is happy to provide boilerplate information on the organization. The SPGA can also proofread your proposal and offer general style, usage and grammar editing and consultation. The SPGA can also help you develop strong statements of need, evaluation metrics and sustainability plans. The SPGA cannot write the content of your proposal.

If you believe your proposal requires significant writing beyond your capability, please talk to the SPGA.

What forms are required for my proposal?

This varies somewhat on the proposal. The Proposal Approval Form (PAF) is required for all proposals. Your proposal may also require and Equipment Loan Agreement, a Confidential Disclosure Agreement, a vehicle use form and a driver liability form. If you have questions about what forms you need to complete, the SPGA can help you determine what forms are necessary.

What must be included in a grant or sponsorship proposal?

It depends on the grant-maker and the RFP. Proposals, especially for private foundations, can vary somewhat in what they require. Some foundation grants begin with a Letter of Intent ( LOI) process, which typically means a short (one or two page) LOI. Most foundation grant proposals require a statement of need, a project description, an evaluation metric, a discussion of project sustainability, projected outcomes, a budget/budget justification and a timeline. Additional documents such as IRS determination letters and financial statements are also typically required. The SPGA will provide those for foundation grants.

Federal grants are slightly more standard in their requirements, though they are not dissimilar from the typical components of a foundation proposal. Federal grants typically require an abstract, a narrative (containing a statement of need, project description, organization information, evaluation metrics, and project outcomes), a budget, and a timeline.

Non-foundation or federal sponsorship proposals vary depending on the sponsoring agency. However, generally, proposals will need a scope of work/statement of work/work plan, budget and timelines similar to those required for a grant proposal.

Research

Is research and/or receiving research grants or sponsorship required for faculty?

No. Research and/or winning grants or sponsorship is not and will not be made compulsory for faculty. However, Oregon Tech recognizes that some faculty wish to pursue research and that research can be beneficial for the professional development of faculty, the educational experience of students, and the advancement of the institution. To this end, Oregon Tech has established the SPGA in part to aid faculty who wish to pursue funding for research and other projects.

I’m interested in doing some cursory prospect research myself. Where should I start?

The best place to start searching for federal grants opportunities is grants.gov. You can define your search by a variety of metrics and read open FOAs. Grants.gov is open to everyone.

For foundation grants, the best place to start is Foundation Center. If you’re located in Klamath Falls, you can access Foundation Center at the Learning Resource Center (LRC). If you’re located in Wilsonville, you can access Foundation Center at the Multnomah County Library. Foundation Center allows you to define your grant search by a number of metrics and find foundations that may fund your project. Foundation Center is, however, only a starting place and may not always have the most accurate or up-to-date information.

If you’re interested in industry-sponsored projects, a great place to start is your industry relationships. You can also contact the Office of Strategic Partnerships to learn more about potential opportunities through industry.

Sponsorship

What is my responsibility in the sponsorship process?

The SPGA exists to help faculty and staff secure grants and sponsorships. It serves primarily, but not totally, a pre-award function. The development of a sponsored project is the responsibility of the faculty or staff principle investigator. It is up to the PI or key personnel to compose the unique content of the proposal, develop the budget/budget justification and timeline, and manage the grant project post -award.

If the sponsored project involves an industry partner, it may be beneficial and/or necessary to work in conjunction with the Office of Strategic Partnerships.

I have a relationship with a business or foundation that makes grants and/or sponsorships. Can I ask them for a grant or sponsorship?

Most likely you can; however, the SPGA asks that you contact us first to talk about the project and the grant-maker. This is to ensure that we track grant projects and that multiple proposals aren’t going to the same funding entity in any given grant cycle.

Sponsored Project

What is a sponsored project?

A sponsored project is a specific project or program, research or otherwise, that is funded, i.e. is paid for, by some entity external to Oregon Tech.

Financial support to the university comes from many sources under many different names. Grants, contracts, sponsorships and agreements are just a few of the various names such support may take. These terms are often used loosely, though we make certain differentiations between them.

Staff

I’m a staff member at Oregon Tech. Can I apply for a grant?

Yes. Staff goes through the same proposal process as faculty, though the sorts of projects applied for by each will likely be different.

Student Pay Rates for Sponsored Projects

Two ways students are paid on sponsored project

1. Hourly rates
2. Stipend rates (Requires SPGA/HR approval)

Student hourly rates

Determined at the discretion of the PI and based on the complexity of the work.
- Undergraduate Students: Rates for student time in sponsored project budgets ranges from hourly rates $10 - $25/hr. depending on type of project and source of funds. Example, $1500/mo. for full-time, grant-supported internships. See Student Pay Guidelines.

Student stipend rates

Determined by sponsor guidelines, in association to the grant, and graduate courses.
 
-     Graduate Students: Stipends range from $750 - $3000 / month, depending on type and amount of work and source of funds. Currently the MS MFG OIT grad program offers tuition remission for Teaching Assistantships, plus stipend of $750 /month (0.3 FTE).
 
-     Research Assistantships may be budgeted at $1500 - $5,000/month, depending on type and amount of work, and funding sources guidelines (Applies to Federal Grants).

Subcontractor

Can a grant include collaboration with a subcontractor?

Yes. A grant can include a subcontract award to another institution. The subcontractor will need to submit their own scope of work/statement of work/work plan, timeline, budget/budget justification. Detailing their role in the project. They may also be required to provide a letter of support and/or additional documentation, depending on the requirements of the proposal.

University Information

Oregon Institute of Technology
3201 Campus Drive
Klamath Falls, OR 97601
EIN Number (10): 472893144
DUNS Number: 055968499 
IORG:0004158
IRB:0004923
Human Subjects Assurance(FWA): 00001626, Expiration date: 6/22/2019
NAICS Code: 611310 
CAGE Code: 1QZC0 
FICE Code: 03211

Contact SPGA Office

Barbara Neal, Director of Sponsored Projects

OfficePurvine Hall 284

Motsi Alismaili, Student-RA

OfficePurvine Hall 276
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