Institutional Support Letter

All School of Medicine Letters of Support Requests requiring the SOM Dean’s approval and signature must be routed using the “Submit a Request” feature in myRESEARCHhome at least ten (10) business days before the SPS record is due in ORA. This detailed user guide provides step-by-step instructions.

In the section “Additional notes or information that pertain to this request,” please include the following:

  • Proposed title of grant
  • Deadline for submission
  • # predoctorate slots requested
  • List of schools (e.g. School of Medicine, Pratt School of Engineering, Arts & Sciences) in which participating faculty have primary appointments
  • Any department-specific items outside the below list that you wish to have addressed

Upon receiving the request, the School of Medicine Associate Dean for Research Training will provide an institutional support letter with all necessary Deans level signatures covering the following topics:

  • Developing and promoting a culture in which the highest standards of scientific rigor, reproducibility and responsible conduct are advanced.
  • Ensuring sufficient start-up funding to permit early-stage faculty to participate in training, and bridge funding to ensure that training may continue if a mentor experiences a hiatus in funds.
  • Supporting core facilities and technology resources and describing how they can be used to enhance training.
  • Providing adequate staff, facilities, and educational resources to the planned program; supporting the PDs/PIs and other key staff associated with the planned training program, providing resources and expertise for evaluating the training outcomes of the program.
  • Fostering and rewarding excellence in training (e.g. through institutional policies such as tenure and promotion.
  • Ensuring that trainees will continue to be supported when they transition from the training grant to other sources of support.
  • Supporting the PDs/PIs and other key staff associated with the planned training program; ensuring faculty have protected time available to devote to mentoring, training and research; considering activities integral to excellent graduate training (such as teaching and mentorship) in tenure and promotion decisions.
  • Ensuring the research facilities and laboratory practices promote the safety of trainees and guaranteeing the research facilities are accessible to trainees with disabilities.
  • Providing trainees access to student support services, such as healthcare and counseling.
  • Supporting the remediation or removal of Participating Faculty from the program perform poorly as mentors.
  • Promoting diversity and inclusion at all levels of the research training environment (trainees, staff, faculty, and leadership) and ensuring a positive, supportive, and inclusive research and training environment for individuals from all backgrounds.
  • Institution Policies on Harassment, Discrimination, and Disciplinary Action
  • The uniqueness of the program in light of other NIH-funded PhD training programs at Duke.