Skip to Content

Notice

Summer Undergraduate Research Fellowships (SURF) Gaithersburg and Boulder Programs; Availability of Funds

Document Details

Information about this document as published in the Federal Register.

Published Document

This document has been published in the Federal Register. Use the PDF linked in the document sidebar for the official electronic format.

Start Preamble

AGENCY:

National Institute of Standards and Technology, Commerce.

ACTION:

Notice.

SUMMARY:

The National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) announces that the 2005 Summer Undergraduate Research Fellowships (SURF) Gaithersburg and Boulder programs are soliciting applications for financial assistance for FY 2005.

End Preamble Start Supplemental Information

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

CFDA Name and Number: Measurement and Engineering Research and Standards—11.609.

Program Description: The SURF Gaithersburg program is soliciting applications in the areas of Electronics and Electrical Engineering, Manufacturing Engineering, Chemical Science and Technology, Physics, Materials Science and Engineering, Building and Fire Research, and Information Technology.

The SURF Boulder program is soliciting applications in the areas of Electronics and Electrical Engineering, Chemical Science and Technology, Physics, Materials Science and Engineering, and Information Technology.

Applications for the Gaithersburg and Boulder programs are separate. Application to one program does not constitute application to the other, and applications will not be exchanged between the Gaithersburg and Boulder programs. If applicants wish to be considered at both sites, two separate applications must be submitted.

Both SURF programs will provide an opportunity for the NIST laboratories and the National Science Foundation (NSF) to join in a partnership to encourage outstanding undergraduate students to pursue careers in science and engineering. The programs will provide research opportunities for students to work with internationally known NIST scientists, to expose them to cutting-edge research and promote the pursuit of graduate degrees in science and engineering.

The NIST SURF Gaithersburg and Boulder Program Directors will work with appropriate department chairs, outreach coordinators, and directors of multi-disciplinary academic organizations to identify outstanding undergraduates (including graduating seniors) who would benefit from off-campus summer research in a world-class scientific environment.

EEEL, MEL, CSTL, PL, MSEL, BFRL, and ITL SURF Gaithersburg Programs

DATES:

All SURF Gaithersburg Program applications, paper and electronic, must be received no later than 5 p.m. Eastern Standard Time on February 15, 2005.

ADDRESSES:

For all SURF Gaithersburg Programs, paper applications must be submitted to: Ms. Anita Sweigert, Administrative Coordinator, National Institute of Standards and Technology, 100 Bureau Drive, Stop 8400, Gaithersburg, MD 20899-8400. Tel: (301) 975-4200, E-mail: anita.sweigert@nist.gov. Web site: http://www.surf.nist.gov/​surf2.htm.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

For complete information about this program and instructions for applying by paper or electronically, read the Federal Funding Opportunity Notice (FFO) at http://www.grants.gov. A paper copy of the FFO may be obtained by Start Printed Page 77224calling (301) 975-6328. The Gaithersburg and Boulder SURF programs will publish separate FFOs on http://www.grants.gov. Program questions should be addressed to Ms. Anita Sweigert, Administrative Coordinator, National Institute of Standards and Technology, 100 Bureau Drive, Stop 8400, Gaithersburg, MD 20899-8400, Tel: (301) 975-4200, E-mail: anita.sweigert@nist.gov. The SURF Gaithersburg program Web site is:

http://www.surf.nist.gov/​surf2.htm. All grants related administration questions concerning this program should be directed to Joyce Brigham, NIST Grants and Agreements Management Division at (301) 975-6328 or joyce.brigham@nist.gov, or for assistance with using Grants.gov contact support@grants.gov.

Funding Availability

Funds budgeted for payment to students under these programs are stipends, not salary. The SURF Gaithersburg Programs will not authorize funds for indirect costs or fringe benefits. The table below summarizes the anticipated annual funding levels from the NSF to operate our REU (Research Experience for Undergraduates) programs, subject to program renewals and availability of funds. In some programs, anticipated NIST co-funding will supplement the number of awards supported. Program funding will be available to provide for the costs of stipends ($333.33 per week per student), travel, and lodging (up to $2800 per student).

ProgramAnticipated NSF fundingAnticipated NIST fundingTotal program fundingAnticipated No. of awards
EEEL$73,000$30,000$103,000~16
MEL82,00024,000106,000~14
CSTL41,00057,00098,000~15
PL95,00050,000145,000~23
MSEL80,000080,000~12
BFRL65,00030,00095,000~14
ITL60,00040,000100,000~17

The actual number of awards made under this announcement will depend on the proposed budgets and the availability of funding. For all SURF Gaithersburg Programs described in this notice, it is expected that individual awards to institutions will range from approximately $3,000 to $70,000. Funding for student housing will be included in cooperative agreements awarded as a result of this notice.

The SURF Gaithersburg Programs are anticipated to run from May 23, 2005 through August 12, 2005; adjustments may be made to accommodate specific academic schedules (e.g., a limited number of 9-week cooperative agreements).

Statutory Authority: 15 U.S.C. 278g-l authorizes NIST to fund financial assistance awards to students at institutions of higher learning within the United States. These students must show promise as present or future contributors to the missions of NIST.

Eligibility: NIST's SURF Gaithersburg Programs are open to colleges and universities in the United States and its territories with degree granting programs in materials science, chemistry, engineering, computer science, mathematics, or physics. Participating students must be U.S. citizens or permanent U.S. residents. The SURF Gaithersburg Programs do not require any matching funds.

Review and Selection Process: All SURF Gaithersburg Program proposals are submitted to the Administrative Coordinator. Each proposal is examined for completeness and responsiveness. Incomplete or non-responsive proposals will not be considered for funding, and the applicant will be notified in writing. The Program will retain one copy of each non-responsive application for three years for record keeping purposes. The remaining copies will be destroyed. Proposals should include the following:

(A) Student Information:

(1) Student application information cover sheet;

(2) Academic transcript for each student nominated for participation (it is recommended that students have a G.P.A. of 3.0 or better, out of a possible 4.0);

(3) A statement of motivation and commitment from each student to participate in the 2005 SURF program, including a description of the student's prioritized research interests;

(4) A resume for each student;

(5) Two letters of recommendation for each student;

(6) Verification of U.S. citizenship or permanent legal resident status for each student; and

(7) Verification of health coverage for each student.

(B) Information About the Applicant Institution:

(1) Description of the institution's education and research programs; and

(2) A summary list of the student(s) being nominated.

Institution proposals will be separated into student/institution packets. Each student/institution packet will be comprised of the required application forms, including a complete copy of the student information and a complete copy of the institution information. The student/institution packets will be directed to the SURF Gaithersburg Program designated by the student as his/her first choice. Each SURF Gaithersburg Program will have three independent, objective NIST employees, who are knowledgeable in the scientific areas of the program, conduct a technical review of each student/institution packet based on the Evaluation Criteria for the SURF Gaithersburg Programs described in this notice. Each technical reviewer will recommend that each student/institution packet be placed into one of three categories: Priority Funding; Fund if Possible; and Do Not Fund. Each student/institution packet will then be placed into one of the three categories by the Program's Director, who will take into consideration the reviewers' recommendations, the relevance of the student's course of study to the program objectives of the NIST laboratory in which that SURF Gaithersburg Program resides as described in the Program Description section of this notice, the relevance of the student's statement of commitment to the goals of the SURF Gaithersburg Program, and the availability of funding.

Student/institution packets placed in the Priority Funding category will be selected for funding in that SURF Gaithersburg Program. Student/institution packets placed in the Do Not Fund category will not be considered for funding.

Student/institution packets placed in the Fund if Possible Category will be considered for funding by the SURF Gaithersburg Program designated by the student as his/her second choice. In making selections for funding, the Start Printed Page 77225Director of the student's second choice SURF Gaithersburg Program will take into consideration the recommendations of the reviewers who conducted the technical reviews for the student's first choice SURF Gaithersburg Program, the program objectives of the NIST laboratory in which the student's second choice SURF Gaithersburg Program resides as described in the Program Description and Objectives section of this notice, the relevance of the student's statement of commitment to the goals of the SURF Gaithersburg Program, and the availability of funding.

Students not selected for funding by their first or second choice SURF Gaithersburg Program, and students who did not designate a second choice, will then be considered for funding from all SURF Gaithersburg Programs that still have slots available. In making selections for funding, the SURF Gaithersburg Program Directors will take into consideration the recommendations of the reviewers who conducted the technical reviews for the student's first choice SURF Gaithersburg Program, the program objectives of the NIST laboratory in which their SURF Gaithersburg Program resides as described in the Program Description and Objectives section of this notice, the relevance to the goals of the SURF Gaithersburg Program, and the availability of funding.

Student/institution packets placed in the Fund if Possible category, but not selected through the process described above, will not be funded.

The final approval of selected applications and award of cooperative agreements will be made by the NIST Grants Officer based on compliance with application requirements as published in this notice, compliance with applicable legal and regulatory requirements, compliance with Federal policies that best further the objectives of the Department of Commerce, and whether the recommended applicants appear to be responsible. Applicants may be asked to modify objectives, work plans, or budgets and provide supplemental information required by the agency prior to award. The decision of the Grants Officer is final.

The SURF Gaithersburg Program will retain one copy of each unsuccessful application for three years for record keeping purposes, and unsuccessful applicants will be notified in writing. The remaining copies will be destroyed.

Evaluation Criteria: For the SURF Gaithersburg Programs, the evaluation criteria are:

(A) Evaluation of Student's Academic Ability and Commitment to Program Goals: Includes evaluation of completed course work; expressed research interest; compatibility of the expressed research interest with SURF Gaithersburg Program research areas; research skills; grade point average in courses relevant to the SURF Gaithersburg Program; career goals; honors and activities.

(B) Evaluation of Applicant Institution's Commitment to Program Goals: Includes evaluation of the institution's academic department(s) relevant to the discipline(s) of the student(s). Each of these factors is given equal weight in the evaluation process.

SURF NIST Boulder Program

DATES:

All SURF NIST Boulder Program applications, paper and electronic, must be received no later than 5 p.m. Mountain Standard Time on February 15, 2005.

ADDRESSES:

Paper applications for the SURF NIST Boulder Program must be submitted to: Ms. Phyllis Wright, Administrative Coordinator, National Institute of Standards and Technology, 325 Broadway, Mail Stop 104, Boulder, CO 80305-3328.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

For complete information about this program and instructions for applying by paper or electronically, read the Federal Funding Opportunity Notice (FFO) at http://www.grants.gov. A paper copy of the FFO may be obtained by calling (301) 975-6328. The Gaithersburg and Boulder SURF programs will publish separate FFOs on www.grants.gov. Program questions should be addressed to Ms. Phyllis Wright, Administrative Coordinator, National Institute of Standards and Technology, 325 Broadway, Mail Stop 104, Boulder, CO 80305-3328, Tel: (303) 497-3244, E-mail: pkwright@boulder.nist.gov, Web site: http://surf.boulder.nist.gov/​. All grants related administration questions concerning this program should be directed to Joyce Brigham, NIST Grants and Agreements Management Division at (301) 975-6328 or joyce.brigham@nist.gov, or for assistance with using Grants.gov contact support@grants.gov.

Additional Information

Funding Availability

Funds budgeted for payment to students under these programs are stipends, not salary. The SURF NIST Boulder Program will not authorize funds for indirect costs or fringe benefits. The table below summarizes the anticipated annual funding levels from the NSF to operate the SURF NIST Boulder program, broken out by Laboratory, subject to program approval and availability of funds. In some Laboratories, anticipated NIST co-funding will supplement the number of awards supported. Program funding will be available to provide for the costs of stipends ($4000 per student for 12 weeks), travel, and lodging (approximately $1800 per student for 12 weeks).

LaboratoryAnticipated NSF fundingAnticipated NIST fundingTotal program fundingAnticipated number of awards
EEEL$58,400$5600$64,0008
PL36,500350040,0005
CSTL21,900210024,0003
MSEL14,600140016,0002
ITL14,600140016,0002

The actual number of awards made under this announcement will depend on the proposed budgets and the availability of funding. For the SURF NIST Boulder Program described in this notice, it is expected that individual awards to institutions will range from approximately $4,000 to $70,000. Funding for student housing will be included in cooperative agreements awarded as a result of this notice.

The SURF NIST Boulder Program is anticipated to run from May 23, 2005 through August 12, 2005; adjustments may be made to accommodate specific academic schedules (e.g., a limited number of 12 week cooperative agreements shifted to begin 3 weeks after the regular start in order to accommodate institutions operating on quarter systems). Start Printed Page 77226

Statutory Authority: 15 U.S.C. 278g-1.

Eligibility: The SURF NIST Boulder Program is open to colleges and universities in the United States and its territories with degree granting programs in materials science, chemistry, engineering, computer science, mathematics, or physics. Participating students must be U.S. citizens or permanent U.S. residents. The SURF NIST Boulder Programs do not require any matching funds.

Review and Selection Process: All SURF NIST Boulder Program proposals are submitted to the Administrative Coordinator. Each proposal is examined for completeness and responsiveness. Incomplete or non-responsive proposals will not be considered for funding, and the applicant will be so notified. The Program will retain one copy of each non-responsive application for three years for record keeping purposes. The remaining copies will be destroyed. Proposals should include the following:

(A) Student Information:

(1) Student application information cover sheet;

(2) Academic transcript for each student nominated for participation (it is recommended that students have a G.P.A. of 3.0 or better, out of a possible 4.0);

(3) A statement of motivation and commitment from each student to participate in the SURF NIST Boulder program, including a description of the student's prioritized research interests;

(4) A resume for each student;

(5) Two letters of recommendation for each student;

(6) Verification of U.S. citizenship or permanent legal resident status for each student; and

(7) Verification of health insurance coverage for each student.

(B) Information About the Applicant Institution:

(1) Description of the institution's education and research programs; and

(2) A summary list of the student(s) being nominated.

Institution proposals will be separated into student/institution packets. Each student/institution packet will be comprised of the required application forms, including a complete copy of the student information and a complete copy of the institution information. The student/institution packets will be directed to a review committee of NIST staff appointed by the SURF NIST Boulder Program Directors. Each SURF Program packet will be reviewed by three independent, objective NIST employees, who are knowledgeable in the scientific areas of the program and are able to conduct a technical review of each student/institution packet based on the Evaluation Criteria for the SURF NIST Boulder Program described in this notice. Each technical reviewer will recommend that each student/institution packet be placed into one of three categories: Priority Funding; Fund if Possible; and Do Not Fund. Each student/institution packet will then be placed into one of the three categories by the SURF NIST Boulder Program Directors, who will take into consideration the reviewers' recommendations, the relevance of the student's course of study to the program objectives of the NIST Boulder Laboratories as described in the Program Description section of this notice, the relevance of the student's statement of commitment to the goals of the SURF NIST Boulder Program, and the availability of funding.

Student/institution packets placed in the Priority Funding category will be selected for funding in the SURF NIST Boulder Program. Student/institution packets placed in the Do Not Fund category will not be considered for funding.

Student/institution packets placed in the Fund if Possible Category will be considered for funding by the SURF NIST Boulder Program when possible. For example, when an award has been declined by another applicant, a back-up will be selected from student/institution packets in this category. In this case, it is likely that either the student's second or third choice of research opportunity would be assigned. In making selections for funding, the SURF NIST Boulder Program Directors will take into consideration the recommendations of the reviewers who conducted the technical reviews, the program objectives of the NIST Boulder laboratory in which the student's requested research opportunity resides as described in the Program Description and Objectives section of this notice, the relevance of the student's statement of commitment to the goals of the SURF NIST Boulder Program, and the availability of funding.

Students not selected for funding for either their first, second or third choice of research opportunities, and students who did not designate a second or third choice, will then be considered for funding from all Boulder Laboratories that still have slots available. In making selections for funding, the SURF NIST Boulder Program Directors will take into consideration the recommendations of the reviewers who conducted the technical reviews, the program objectives of the NIST Laboratory in which their SURF NIST Boulder SURF Program research opportunity resides as described in the Program Description and Objectives section of this notice, the relevance to the goals of the SURF NIST Boulder Program, and the availability of funding.

Student/institution packets placed in the Fund if Possible category, but not selected through the process described above, will not be funded.

The final approval of selected applications and award of cooperative agreements will be made by the NIST Grants Officer based on compliance with application requirements as published in this notice, compliance with applicable legal and regulatory requirements, and compliance with Federal policies that best further the objectives of the Department of Commerce. Applicants may be asked to modify objectives, work plans, or budgets and provide supplemental information required by the agency prior to award. The decision of the Grants Officer is final.

The SURF NIST Boulder Program will retain one copy of each unsuccessful application for three years for record keeping purposes, and unsuccessful applicants will be notified in writing. The remaining copies will be destroyed.

Evaluation Criteria: For the SURF NIST Boulder Program, the evaluation criteria are: (A) Evaluation of Student's Academic Ability and Commitment to Program Goals: Includes evaluation of completed course work; expressed research interest; compatibility of the expressed research interest with SURF NIST Boulder Program research areas; research skills; grade point average in courses relevant to the SURF NIST Boulder Program; career goals; honors and activities;

(B) Evaluation of Applicant Institution's Commitment to Program Goals: Includes evaluation of the institution's academic department(s) relevant to the discipline(s) of the student(s). Each of these factors is given equal weight in the evaluation process.

The following information applies to both the SURF Gaithersburg Programs and the SURF NIST Boulder Program:

The Department of Commerce Pre-Award Notification Requirements for Grants and Cooperative Agreements

The Department of Commerce Pre-Award Notification Requirements for Grants and Cooperative Agreements contained in the Federal Register notice of October 1, 2001 (66 FR 49917), as amended by the Federal Register notice published on October 30, 2002 (67 FR 66109), are applicable to this announcement. On the form SF-424, the applicant's 9-digit Dun and Bradstreet Data Universal Numbering System (DUNS) number must be entered in the Start Printed Page 77227Applicant Identifier block (68 FR 38402).

Collaborations With NIST Employees

All applications should include a description of any work proposed to be performed by an entity other than the applicant, and the cost of such work should ordinarily be included in the budget.

If an applicant proposes collaboration with NIST, the statement of work should include a statement of this intention, a description of the collaboration, and prominently identify the NIST employee(s) involved, if known. Any collaboration by a NIST employee must be approved by appropriate NIST management and is at the sole discretion of NIST. Prior to beginning the merit review process, NIST will verify the approval of the proposed collaboration. Any unapproved collaboration will be stricken from the proposal prior to the merit review.

Use of NIST Intellectual Property

If the applicant anticipates using any NIST-owned intellectual property to carry out the work proposed, the applicant should identify such intellectual property. This information will be used to ensure that no NIST employee involved in the development of the intellectual property will participate in the review process for that competition. In addition, if the applicant intends to use NIST-owned intellectual property, the applicant must comply with all statutes and regulations governing the licensing of Federal government patents and inventions, described at 35 U.S.C. sec. 200-212, 37 CFR part 401, 15 CFR 14.36, and in section 20 of the Department of Commerce Pre-Award Notification Requirements, 66 FR 49917 (2001), as amended by the Federal Register notice published on October 30, 2002 (67 FR 66109). Questions about these requirements may be directed to the Counsel for NIST, 301-975-2803.

Any use of NIST-owned intellectual property by a proposer is at the sole discretion of NIST and will be negotiated on a case-by-case basis if a project is deemed meritorious. The applicant should indicate within the statement of work whether it already has a license to use such intellectual property or whether it intends to seek one.

If any inventions made in whole or in part by a NIST employee arise in the course of an award made pursuant to this notice, the United States government may retain its ownership rights in any such invention. Licensing or other disposition of NIST's rights in such inventions will be determined solely by NIST, and include the possibility of NIST putting the intellectual property into the public domain.

Initial Screening of All Applications

All applications received in response to this announcement will be reviewed to determine whether or not they are complete and responsive to the scope of the stated objectives for each program. Incomplete or non-responsive applications will not be reviewed for technical merit. The Program will retain one copy of each non-responsive application for three years for record keeping purposes. The remaining copies will be destroyed.

Paperwork Reduction Act

The standard forms in the application kit involve a collection of information subject to the Paperwork Reduction Act. The use of Standard Forms 424, 424A, 424B, SF-LLL, and CD-346 have been approved by OMB under the respective Control Numbers 0348-0043, 0348-0044, 0348-0040, 0348-0046, and 0605-0001. The use of the Student Application Information sheet has been approved by OMB under Control Number 0693-0042. Notwithstanding any other provision of the law, no person is required to respond to, nor shall any person be subject to a penalty for failure to comply with, a collection subject to the requirements of the Paperwork Reduction Act, unless that collection of information displays a currently valid OMB Control Number.

Research Projects Involving Human Subjects, Human Tissue, Data or Recordings Involving Human Subjects

Any proposal that includes research involving human subjects, human tissue, data or recordings involving human subjects must meet the requirements of the Common Rule for the Protection of Human Subjects, codified for the Department of Commerce at 15 CFR part 27. In addition, any proposal that includes research on these topics must be in compliance with any statutory requirements imposed upon the Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS) and other federal agencies regarding these topics, all regulatory policies and guidance adopted by DHHS, FDA, and other Federal agencies on these topics, and all Presidential statements of policy on these topics.

On December 3, 2000, the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS) introduced a new Federal-wide Assurance of Protection of Human Subjects (FWA). The FWA covers all of an institution's Federally supported human subjects research, and eliminates the need for other types of Assurance documents. The Office for Human Research Protections (OHRP) has suspended processing of multiple project assurance (MPA) renewals. All existing MPAs will remain in force until further notice. For information about FWAs, please see the OHRP Web site at http://ohrp.osophs.dhhs.gov/​humansubjects/​assurance/​fwas.htm.

In accordance with the DHHS change, NIST will continue to accept the submission of human subjects protocols that have been approved by Institutional Review Boards (IRBs) possessing a current, valid MPA from DHHS. NIST also will accept the submission of human subjects protocols that have been approved by IRBs possessing a current, valid FWA from DHHS. NIST will not issue a single project assurance (SPA) for any IRB reviewing any human subjects protocol proposed to NIST.

On August 9, 2001, the President announced his decision to allow Federal funds to be used for research on existing human embryonic stem cell lines as long as prior to his announcement (1) the derivation process (which commences with the removal of the inner cell mass from the blastocyst) had already been initiated and (2) the embryo from which the stem cell line was derived no longer had the possibility of development as a human being. NIST will follow guidance issued by the National Institutes of Health at http://ohrp.osophs.dhhs.gov/​humansubjects/​guidance/​stemcell.pdf for funding such research.

Research Projects Involving Vertebrate Animals

Any proposal that includes research involving vertebrate animals must be in compliance with the National Research Council's “Guide for the Care and Use of Laboratory Animals” which can be obtained from National Academy Press, 2101 Constitution Avenue, NW., Washington, DC 20055. In addition, such proposals must meet the requirements of the Animal Welfare Act (7 U.S.C. 2131 et seq.), 9 CFR parts 1, 2, and 3, and if appropriate, 21 CFR part 58. These regulations do not apply to proposed research using pre-existing images of animals or to research plans that do not include live animals that are being cared for, euthanized, or used by the project participants to accomplish research goals, teaching, or testing. These regulations also do not apply to obtaining animal materials from commercial processors of animal Start Printed Page 77228products or to animal cell lines or tissues from tissue banks.

Executive Order 12866

This funding notice was determined to be not significant for purposes of Executive Order 12866.

Executive Order 13132 (Federalism)

It has been determined that this notice does not contain policies with federalism implications as that term is defined in Executive Order 13132.

Executive Order 12372

Applications under this program are not subject to Executive Order 12372, “Intergovernmental Review of Federal Programs.”

Administrative Procedure Act/Regulatory Flexibility Act

Notice and comment are not required under the Administrative Procedure Act (5 U.S.C. 553) or any other law, for rules relating to public property, loans, grants, benefits or contracts (5 U.S.C. 553 (a)). Because notice and comment are not required under 5 U.S.C. 553, or any other law, for rules relating to public property, loans, grants, benefits or contracts (5 U.S.C. 553(a)), a Regulatory Flexibility Analysis is not required and has not been prepared for this notice, 5 U.S.C. 601 et seq.

Start Signature

Dated: December 15, 2004.

Hratch G. Semerjian,

Acting Director, NIST.

End Signature End Supplemental Information

[FR Doc. 04-28239 Filed 12-23-04; 8:45 am]

BILLING CODE 3510-13-P