Sponsored Research Overview
The services provided by Sponsored Research include pre-award and post-award segments. The pre-award core area encompasses the following activities:
- Assist faculty in identifying and cultivating appropriate external funding sources (with emphases on federal and state funding agencies) to support their individual research, scholarship, and/or professional development interests;
- Assist faculty and staff in the processes involved in developing award-winning grant proposals;
- Assist prospective grant applicants to discus possible ideas, continue to incubate them, and passionately and appropriately develop them into award-winning proposals.
- Review the proposal budget for reasonableness, adherence to sponsors' policies on allowable and non-allowable costs, facilities and administration (F&A) or indirect cost, cost sharing, insurance of arithmetic accuracy and overall completeness;
- Review grant proposals to ensure adherence to the published requirements of prospective external funding agencies' and compliance with WCU policies and procedures;
- Develop and implement series of external submission processes for the purpose of appropriate and successful processing of all completed WCU authorized grant proposals - via surface and/or on-line transmission formats - to the external funding agencies/sources;
- Accept grant awards and ensure that they are administered consistent with funding agencies and WCU institutional policies;
- Mediate prevailing pre-award and post-award processes with sponsors to ensure that their requirements (such as sub-contracting to other parties, etc) are consistent and in compliance with the policies of the Pennsylvania State System of Higher Education (PASHE), the Association of Pennsylvania State College and University Faculty (APSCUF) collective bargaining agreement (CBA), and WCU regarding research and professional development activities - such as those relating to publication rights and other intellectual property rights, and other financial and programmatic terms and conditions that are acceptable to WCU.
- Implement an annual function aimed at recognizing faculty and staff who participated in the submission of grant proposals to external funding agencies - whether successful or not.
- Develop and implement an evaluation system that is inclusive of generation of periodic reports of external grants productivity, establishing priorities for sponsored research activities, and of the impact of sponsored research on continuing faculty development.
The post-award core area, although not housed within the Office of Sponsored Research, but in the Office of Restricted Funds in WCU Division of Administrative and Fiscal Affairs, is responsible for the following functions:
- Proactive and systemic collaboration with the staff of OSR in the review of budgets developed by faculty during the pre-award and post-award phases to ensure compliance with sponsors' requirements and WCU policies;
- Establish individual investigator's data record and financial account in the Office of Restricted Funds or funded grants management which serves as WCU's record for sponsored accounts;
- Monitor the expenses posted to the individual accounts for allowability, allocability, reasonableness, and adherence to WCU financial accountability policies;
- Generate financial reports to the sponsors on project expenses posted against funded budgets;
- Invoice the sponsors for expenses posted to the general WCU ledger or relating to other contractual payment terms;
- Monitor investigators' spending against the funded budget line item, and noting trends such as overspending, underspending, non-allowable spending, etc;
- Generate and distribute appropriate periodic internal users' management financial reports of all funded projects;
- Financial close-out aspect of the post-award - to ensure all financial requirements have been successfully satisfied - such as submission of interim and final reports, invention and other propriety rights inventory (if any), equipment purchase reporting, compensation (salary and wages) certifications, etc.