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Exploratory Initiative Program (EIP) for Faculty

The Pritzker Institute of Biomedical Science and Engineering launched the Exploratory Initiative Program (EIP) in the spring 2020 semester. This new program is being extended for the fall 2020 semester and is an open call to all Illinois Tech faculty members to propose initiatives within biomedical science or engineering to facilitate or enhance research through funding provided by the Pritzker Institute.

All faculty members from across Illinois Tech’s academic departments are encouraged to apply.

The purpose of the EIP is to identify and explore new possibilities for sustained faculty-support programs within the Pritzker Institute. The institute is seeking creative ideas for increasing the quality and quantity of biomedical science and engineering research at Illinois Tech. The outcomes of the initiatives funded during the spring and fall 2020 academic semesters will be assessed and considered for continuation in future academic years.

Any and all proposed initiatives will be considered for funding, under the condition that the initiative must be completed by the end of the fall 2020 semester. Proposed initiatives should clearly define how the completion of the initiative will promote biomedical science or biomedical engineering research at Illinois Tech. Preference will be given to proposals that are highly strategic and demonstrate a likely pathway to future translational research.

Proposed initiatives may directly benefit individual research, although preference will be given to those that embrace team-based research. Examples of possible initiatives include, but are not limited to:

  • One-to-two-day workshops for specific research topics aimed at creating new collaborations within, and outside of, Illinois Tech within the fields of biomedical science or engineering. The faculty member will be expected to explain the potential benefits of the workshop as it relates to how the expected collaborations will enhance funded research. Scientific organization must be proposed by the faculty applicant, while logistical support and funding will be provided by the Pritzker Institute.
  • Strategic activities aimed at submitting a proposal for a specific Funding Opportunity Announcement (FOA) related to biomedical science or engineering will be considered, including travel to establish collaborations or to meet with federal program officers, performing preliminary studies, or funding of a graduate student for literature surveys. Activities related to writing a proposal for responding to a particular FOA should clearly state the gap area that must be filled to make Illinois Tech competitive for responding to the FOA. Proposed initiatives should provide specific aims or project goals that directly respond to the target FOA. It is expected that a grant submission will be made.
  • Visits of Ph.D. applicants, for F20 admission, to the Illinois Tech campus where a clear intention to recruit the student should be demonstrated. In particular, availability of funds to support the student at Illinois Tech, upon admission, should be identified.
  • Financial support for new Ph.D. applicants, from outside of Illinois Tech, in the form of tuition, a stipend, or research-support funds will be considered. As opposed to traditional fellowships, hybrid means of supporting new graduate students—which involve joint support by the faculty member, department, or college and the Pritzker Institute—will be preferentially considered for funding. Note: Ph.D. support does not need to be completed in the spring 2020 semester.
  • Small to moderate equipment purchases, preferably for core uses, possibly with shared funding, will be considered. A clear statement of how the procurement of the equipment will enhance the likelihood of obtaining external funding is required. Purchase must be completed in the spring 2020 semester.
  • Individual, or joint, faculty research website development, where content must be supplied by the faculty member. Preference will be given to those faculty members who do not currently have a research website.
  • Other new proposed initiatives, limited only by faculty member creativity, are encouraged.

Faculty members interested in consideration for funding under the EIP should contact the executive director of the Pritzker Institute, Philip Troyk, at troyk@iit.edu to schedule a meeting for proposing the initiative. Initiatives will be considered on a first-come, first-serve basis.