2018 PESCA Grant Program Request for Proposals

Significant changes to this year’s program appear in the following sections below:

  1. Faculty Eligibility
  2. Calendar
  3. Budget
  4. Research Compliance

The Division of Research PESCA Grant Program

The Division of Research funds the Program to Enhance Scholarly and Creative Activities (PESCA) Grant Program to support significant research and scholarly projects that have the potential to lead to the awarding of external funding by agencies and endowments such as national endowments, major federal research funding agencies, institutes, foundations and councils. A variety of activities are eligible for funding including travel for research and to collections and libraries, access to data resources, graduate student support, and seed funding to support application for federal and other national-level grants.


All Texas A&M University PI eligible faculty are eligible to apply for this grant. Faculty are encouraged to submit either single or multi-authored proposals. A faculty member’s name may not appear on more than one proposal submission, and a principal investigator may receive no more than two PESCA grant awards during a contiguous five-year period.


  • Opening date for the submission of proposals: Sep. 1, 2017.

PESCA proposal writing workshops:

  • Sep. 7, 2017, from 1:00 to 3:00pm, and Oct. 11, 2017 from 1:00 to 3:00pm in Room 3147 of the ILSB in the center of campus.
  • Applications must be finalized in the E-Proposal system no later than Monday, Oct. 30, 2017, by 11:59 p.m. US Central Daylight Savings Time. (No late applications will be accepted)
  • Notification of awards: Monday, Dec. 18, 2017.
  • Estimated date of grant funding pending receipt of any required compliance approval(s). (e.g., IRB, IACUC): May 1, 2018.

    PESCA Award Limits

    The maximum award amount is $10,000 for single-authored proposals; $18,000 for co-authored proposals; and $25,000 for proposals with three or more authors.

    Budget Information

    All travel costs, services, equipment, supplies, salaries, fringe benefits, and insurance must be listed individually as line items in the proposed budget. As the funds for this program are not fringe-bearing, fringe benefits must be included in the budget as a supplement to all requested salaries and should be calculated at 16.8 percent for faculty and staff and through a somewhat more involved calculation for graduate students, please see the linked page. Health insurance premiums must also be included separately. Current rates can be found at http://www.tamus.edu/assets/files/budgets-acct/pdf/Fringe-benefit-FY2018.pdf. For additional information regarding these benefits, applicants should contact their departmental business office. Facility and administrative (indirect) costs are not allowed. Applicants must submit a detailed justification for all expenses listed in the budget request as they specifically relate to the work proposed. While faculty salary can be requested as a line item in PESCA budgets, PESCA grant budgets may not be comprised primarily of faculty salary and fringe benefits.

    Project Period

    PESCA awards are for a maximum of twelve months. One extension may be requested. Any funds remaining in the principal investigator’s departmental account must be returned to the Division of Research within five days of the end of the grant period (April 30, 2019), or at the end of an extension if one has been granted.

    Proposal Evaluation Criteria

    A peer-review panel comprised of Texas A&M University faculty will evaluate and score each submitted proposal based upon the following major criteria:

    1. The potential for significant scholarly, research, or creative work from the proposed project.
    2. The potential for the PESCA award to be used as seed funding, to be successfully leveraged into a proposal submitted to a federal funding agency or other externally funded grant, or both.
    3. The potential for inter or multi-disciplinary collaboration.
    4. The potential for the work produced at the conclusion of the proposed project to have broader impact upon the university, state and nation.
    5. The potential for the proposal submitter(s) to successfully complete the proposed project.
    6. Professional presentation and completeness of submitted proposal documents.

    Upon Selection

    The Division of Research will work closely with departmental business offices to create the necessary accounts on or before May 1, 2018 to receive PESCA grant funds. Faculty who receive an award should contact their business office before making any final commitments concerning grant-related expenditures. Any expenses incurred by grantees related to their sponsored work beyond the amount of the PESCA award will not be reimbursed by this office.


    Research, scholarly, or creative work resulting from PESCA sponsored projects are expected to be reported or presented in appropriate scholarly forums, such as articles in peer-reviewed journals, scholarly books, presentations at professional meetings, and peer-reviewed venues exhibiting creative work. Project results should also form the basis of, or continue, a sustained program of research, scholarship, or creative work supported by external awards or funding. Those who are granted a PESCA award are required to send a final report to the Division of Research detailing how the grant funds were used no later than June 1, 2019. The form can be downloaded from the following link: http://vpr.tamu.edu/resources/forms/pesca-final-reporting-form, and upon completion should be submitted to Dr. Jim Izat, PESCA Grant Program manager, at jizat@tamu.edu. Those who do not submit this report will not be eligible to participate in any future research enhancement programs supported through the Division of Research.

    Travel Requests

    PESCA grant award funds may be expended for approved university travel, including foreign travel, provided such travel is within the guidelines of the University rule 21.01.03.M1, Foreign Travel  (see: http://rules.tamu.edu/PDFs/21.01.03.M0.02.pdf).

    Research Compliance

    If the proposed research, scholarly, or creative activity involves a compliance issue (for example, the Institutional Review Board (IRB) for research involving human subjects, or the Institutional Animal Care and Use Committee (IACUC)), applicants must check the appropriate box in the general information section of the online application to signify that oversight is needed for their research. Principal investigators are encouraged to contact either the IRB or IACUC in advance of submitting their proposals to determine if such oversight is necessary before submitting their proposals. The appropriate compliance forms must be submitted and approved, and copies of approval documents must be forwarded to Dr. Jim Izat, PESCA Grant Program manager, at jizat@tamu.edu upon receipt. No PESCA funds can be disbursed to the departmental accounts of grantees until research compliance (IRB or IACUC) approval letter(s) have been received by this office. Failure to submit a timely request for research compliance approval(s) or to secure timely approval(s) may result in forfeiture of PESCA grant funds.


    All PESCA proposals must be submitted electronically using the online application system at http://eproposal.tamu.edu. Applicants must have a NetID to access the internal grants proposal submission (E-Proposal) online system. Faculty who do not have a NetID can register for one at http://gateway.tamu.edu. A proposal will consist of the documents listed below. The abstract, project description, investigator curriculum vitae, and current and pending support summary should be uploaded in PDF format (only) in the designated location of the application template. Though the E-Proposal system automatically converts Word files to PDF files, to ensure that special characters and formatting are accurately reproduced, it is strongly recommended that faculty use Adobe Acrobat or Microsoft Word to convert Word files to PDF files before uploading through the E-Proposal system. Do not scan paper documents and upload the scans in PDF format. Any incomplete or unreadable documents and/or proposals will not be reviewed.

      • General information: Contact information for each investigator, compliance reporting, key words for project, and report codes. Select the department through which the proposal should be routed. Assign a descriptive title.
      • Abstract (uploaded PDF document): A summary briefly describing the project's objectives, proposed methodology, and anticipated results in terms easily understandable to faculty outside the researcher’s discipline. The abstract should not exceed 150 words and must use Times New Roman 12-point font with one-inch margins. Proposal authors should list five descriptive keywords associated with this proposal.
      • Project description (uploaded PDF document): A narrative of the project of up to four pages in length using Times New Roman 12-point font, single spaced, with one-inch margins. The project description should include any illustrations, figures, data, or other information and:
        • Applications must demonstrate the capability and credibility of the principal investigator(s) to perform the research, scholarly, or creative work. If graduate students are to take part in the research project, describe the contributions to the study that are relevant to their graduate study and the supervision strategy planned for their participation;
        • provide background information about the project and discuss its potential impact on the discipline;
        • describe the potential for external funding opportunities that might sustain or extend the proposed project;
        • state the specific objectives of the project;
        • describe the work to be performed, the tasks of each person, and project timeline;
        • describe the anticipated outcome(s) of the project expected within one year, and three years of the award;
        • describe any interdisciplinary linkages involved in the project.
      • Investigator curriculum vitae (uploaded PDF document(s)): Please listing recent academic background information and publications or creative work for each principal and co-principal investigator. NOTE: Please ensure that the CV in the E-Proposal system is current. If you require assistance in updating your vita please contact Jim Izat at jizat@tamu.edu.
      • Current and pending funding summary (uploaded PDF document): List the source, title, date, and amount of relevant internal and external funding support received and pending, as well as information describing applications submitted but not funded during the previous three years (for each investigator).
      • Reporting data section/key words: All fields are required to be completed.
      • Budget: Not to exceed US $10,000 for a single author, US $18,000 for co-authored proposals, and US $25,000 for proposals with three or more authors.
      • Budget justification: Up to 3,000 characters, including spaces, specifically itemizing each budgeted expense. Justify each item in the budget, including a summer salary and fringe benefit request if applicable, in terms of the goals of the project.

    All applications must be submitted online through the E-Proposal system only. Incomplete applications will not be considered for funding. As a precaution, authors are advised to keep a backup copy of their proposal submissions.

    DEADLINE FOR SUBMISSION:  The online application must be completed, saved and submitted through the Texas A&M University E-Proposal online submission system no later than 11:59 p.m. (United States Central Daylight Saving Time) on Monday, Oct. 30, 2017.

    On-Line Proposal Submission System: http://eproposal.tamu.edu

    Click Here to Download a Guide to Using the e-Proposal System

    Questions should be directed to:

    Dr. Jim Izat
    PESCA Grant Program Officer
    Research Development Services
    Division of Research
    E-mail: jizat@tamu.edu

    Technical questions or issues should be directed to: