"Advanced NIH Grantsmanship" Webinar Series

09/21/2017 - 12/08/2017

The Iceman’s Run: A Webinar Course in Advanced NIH Grantsmanship
plus Personal Coaching to Prepare Your National Institutes of Health Grant

September 21 – December 8
Presented by Tom Hollon, PhD, grant consultant for the Office of the Vice President for Research and Graduate Studies

The Iceman’s Run is designed to give you the best NIH R01, U01 or R21 grant application you’ve ever submitted, and teach you how to win when NIH research budgets are super tight.

The course consists of webinars every two weeks, a workshop, and personal and group coaching. Advanced grantsmanship will be taught by example, revealing writing tricks and strategies from more than 50 funded NIH R01 grants for lab research, social science, statistics and bioinformatics research, and clinical trials.

About the instructor
Tom Hollon has helped MSU professors win $17,000,000 in grants. He has nearly 15 years’ experience helping researchers win grants and contracts, with special focus on NIH. For more about Tom, see: http://vprgs.msu.edu/special-consulting-services .


Enrollment is limited to 15. Sign up by Sept. 20.
To apply, email: RGS.hollonappts@campusad.msu.edu
Enrollment is restricted to MSU faculty preparing an application for an NIH R01, U01 or R21 grant by February 2018. Preference will be given to faculty applying for R01s and U01s. Postdocs and faculty writing R03 grants are not eligible.  


Here’s what you’ll get:

  • learn to gather competitive intelligence about NIH funding possibilities in your field
  • learn advanced NIH grant writing by seeing other people’s R01s analyzed for what makes them great
  • personal attention in solving grant problems
  • peer-review of your research plan prior to submission
  • professional editing of your research plan for persuasiveness and impact

Program overview and schedule
The course runs fall semester and is limited to 15 faculty so Tom can help each person individually.  Webinars every two weeks will last 60 to 90 minutes and are recorded, so if you miss one you can catch it later. Each month you get at least one hour of personal attention from Tom on any grant problem you’re grappling with. Then, after your research plan is reviewed by peers of your choosing, the Office of the Vice President for Research and Graduate Studies’ editors will edit it to help make your application its very best. If your grant isn’t ready to submit by February of 2018, you’re still eligible for editing later on.

Sept. 21 - Webinar: Competitive Advantage in NIH R01 Grant Writing
Our kick-off webinar will focus on competitive advantages in NIH grant writing that most professors could use but few do. This is the foundation for everything else in the course.

Oct. 2-6 - Individual grant strategy sessions 
Tom will be on campus to meet with you by appointment to discuss anything in your grant you’re struggling with.

Oct. 5 - Workshop: Competitive intelligence using the NIH Reporter grants database
This online database can reveal what sort of research NIH has funded in your area, for how much, through which study sections, and all sorts of other things that can help you win a grant. You’ll learn to use the Reporter to prepare to discuss NIH’s interest in your work with Program Officers and find copies of grants in your field to study as models.

Oct. 19 - Webinar: How to write Specific Aims and Abstracts that get reviewers excited
Specific Aims is your grant’s single most important page. We’ll get under the hood with examples of winning Specific Aims pages to show you what makes them great. Then we’ll do it for abstracts.

Oct. 26- Nov. 1 - Hotseat session: Specific Aims and Abstract
You’ll meet by conference call with Tom and two other class members to review and improve your Specific Aims and Abstract.

Nov. 2 - Webinar: How to write exciting Significance and Innovation sections 
NIH doesn’t fund unexciting projects. We’ll look at other people’s winning grants to see how they wrote Significance and Innovation to make them exciting.

Nov. 9 - 30 - Hotseat session: Significance and Innovation
Your hotseat group will meet by conference call with Tom to review and improve your Significance and Innovation sections.

Nov. 13-17 Individual grant strategy sessions
Tom will be on campus to meet with you by appointment to discuss anything in your grant you’re struggling with.

Nov. 16 - Webinar: How to make your Approach seem like a guaranteed sure thing 
NIH doesn’t fund projects reviewers think won’t work. We’ll examine winning grants for better ways to write the main parts of Approach, two different ways to present preliminary data, how to describe risky experiments, how to summarize experiments and sell them at the same time, and better ways to use figures and tables.  

Nov. 30 - Webinar: Odds & Ends
Here we cover everthing else, beginning with reading the tea leaves in a Summary Statement and writing the Introduction to a revised application. Then biosketches, budget justification, facilities, human subjects protections, multi-PI statements, minority inclusion, data sharing plans, letters of support, and cover letters.

Dec. 4-8 - Individual grant strategy sessions
Tom will be on campus to meet with you by appointment to discuss anything in your grant you’re struggling with.

TBD Peer Review and Editing
As a condtion for acceptance in the course you agree to have your research plan peer-reviewed by at least two others in your field. After peer review you may schedule with OVPRGS to have your research plan professionally edited prior to submission. 

Who’s the Iceman?
IcemanThe Iceman’s Run is named in honor of George Woolf, one of the all-time great jockeys, known for his performance under pressure as the Iceman. In his heyday of the 1930s he won more races than anyone else thanks in no small part to the unusual preparations he made to race — things other jockeys could have imitated, but didn’t. This program will help you prepare your grant as Woolf would have, by exploiting competitive advantages that most researchers could use, but usually don’t.

Final Sign-up Deadline: Sept. 20
To apply for the Iceman’s Run or ask questions, email: RGS.hollonappts@campusad.msu.edu