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Trans-Institutional Programs

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TIPs Awards | VU BreakThru (Blog) | Funding Guidelines

Eligibility and Guidelines

  1. This program is open to all VU and VUMC-employed faculty.
  2. All full-time faculty are eligible. Tenure-track and non-tenure track faculty must obtain approval from their dean. The lead organizer must also demonstrate a past commitment to advancing collaborative endeavors.
  3. The other participants in the proposal must be full-time faculty devoted to both the discovery and learning enterprises.
  4. Proposals must involve faculty from at least two Vanderbilt schools/colleges. Exceptions can be made if an intra-college proposal demonstrates a truly interdisciplinary approach. Participants must disclose current funding from other internal and external sources, so to provide a full account of the support available for the project.
  5. For multi-year awards, continued funding is contingent on annual progress reports and reviews of that progress by the Council. Metrics for the successful completion of the initiative must be provided for use by the TIPs council in evaluating future requests for support.
  6. Proposals should seek to establish or invest in organizations that support addressing topics of critical academic and societal interest and advance Vanderbilt's commitment to inclusive excellence.
  7. For complete funding guidelines, click here. 


  1. You may list up to 10 faculty collaborators.
  2. You must include VUnetIDs for all participants. Listing VUnetIDs will allow administrators to pull faculty titles, department affiliations and other relevant information.
  3. Please limit listed participants to individuals who are full-time faculty engaged in discovery (i.e. research) and learning (i.e., teaching or mentoring students) and who will be active participants in the proposal. There is no benefit to having a long list of participants.
  4. The proposal itself should discuss other individuals (including students, fellows, and administrators) and centers that will be significantly involved.
  5. During a given review cycle, a given faculty member’s participation is limited to two proposals, only one as lead organizer. Additionally, a given faculty member may only serve as PI on one open TIPs project.

Application Process


The following information is requested by the TIPs Council. Pre-proposals should be submitted online via InfoReady Review, Vanderbilt's online submissions portal.

  1. Program Title (up to 9 words, to be used in TIPs promotional materials and webpages).
  2. Program Summary (up to 150 words, to be used in TIPs promotional materials and webpages).
  3. Lead faculty name and VUnetID.
  4. Faculty collaborator names (up to 10) and VUnetID.
  5. Proposed program description (up to 500 words, written for colleagues from a wide range of fields and disciplines).
  6. Program goals (up to 300 words).
  7. Measures of success (up to 300 words).
  8. Identification of university resources to be utilized.
  9. High-level budget overview - include anticipated total funding requested, number of years, approximate funding amount per year.

Invitation to submit full proposals will be delivered in December

Full Proposals

You will be asked to submit the following information into the new, online application platform.

  1. Program Title (up to 9 words, to be used in TIPs promotional materials and webpages).
  2. Program Promotional Summary (up to 150 words, to be used in TIPs promotional materials and webpages).
  3. Lead faculty name and VUnetID.
  4. Faculty collaborator names (up to 10) and VUnetID.
  5. VRA or VIA.
  6. Grand challenge or major topic, issue to be addressed (up to 300 words). 
  7. Proposed program description (up to 2,500 words).
  8. Measures of Success – Provide a general overview of how success will be measured or gauged for the program (up to 500 words).
  9. Inclusive Excellence  – If applicable, provide detail on how the proposed program will advance and embrace inclusive excellence (up to 300 words).
  10. University Resources   – Are current resources sufficient and how will your program address and enhance current offerings? (up to 150 words)
  11. Administrative Management – Identify the office or entity that will manage the program's budget and administrative operations.
  12. Disclosure of lead faculty's current external funding sources.
  13. Disclosure of lead faculty's current internal funding sources.
  14. Number of years of funding requested.
  15. Total budget request.
  16. Amount per year requested.
  17. Budget breakdown by category by year (i.e. Capital expenses, graduate student funding, supplies and materials, travel, etc.) along with justification/explanation. See budget guidelines.
  18. The option to upload images and graphics is available for items that cannot be included in the program proposal.
  19. Deans will be asked to submit a full letter of support for VRAs at the time of application.

Note: Deans will be asked to offer feedback on VIAs.

Selection Process

The TIPs Council will be responsible for assessing the merits of proposals for funding. This council represents the wide range of academic interests that define our campus. Three review panels comprised of a cross section of faculty from across all the colleges will help the council review proposals. Council recommendations about the proposals will be forwarded to university leadership for final funding consideration.