Letter of Intent and Eligibility
Do I need to submit a letter of intent prior to submitting the application?
Yes. It is mandatory that you submit a letter of intent (LOI). LOIs are reviewed for eligibility and only eligible applicants may submit a full application. The letter of intent should include the following:
- Letter of Intent online form
- Abstract of proposed project (please do not exceed 350 words)
- NIH biosketch
What do I need to include in my letter of intent?
You must complete the necessary form via the online awards portal (this includes justifying the category you intend to apply to and an abstract of your proposed research project), and include an NIH biosketch.
If I have been selected to participate in the Clinical Research Training Institute, am I eligible for the Scholar Awards?
It depends. You cannot have overlapping ASH awards. For example, if you begin your CRTI program cycle in June 2018, the projected end date would be in May 2019. You would be eligible to submit a letter of intent (LOI) for the Scholar Award program with an application deadline of August 2018, as the Scholar Award program would not go into effect until July 2019. If you began CRTI in June 2018, you would not be eligible for a Scholar Award that began July 2018.
What are the citizenship requirements for applicants?
Eligible applicants must be a permanent resident or citizen of the United States or Canada or hold a visa to work in the United States or Canada.
Do I need to be a member of ASH to apply to the letter of intent?
Yes. Scholar Award recipients are required to be good standing ASH members. However, your membership may be pending when the LOI and application are due. If you are chosen as a Scholar, your award is contingent on the approval of your membership application.
The stage of your career will determine your membership process. Please visit the membership page for more details.
To verify your membership status, please log on to the membership section of the ASH website. If you need assistance with your username and password, please contact an ASH Customer Relations Representative at email@example.com.
What are letters of collaboration?
Letters of collaboration are not mandatory. They can be submitted as evidence of feasibility if the project will require significant support from another person/group to succeed. These should not be general in nature.
How much of my full-time professional effort must be devoted to research?
Your institution will be required to certify that at least 75 percent of your full-time professional effort is devoted to research.
Are awardees permitted to have simultaneous funding?
It depends on the circumstances:
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- If you have successfully competed for a substantial award (e.g. NIH R01 or equivalent grant) as the PI or co-PI before the application date, you are no longer eligible for the Scholar Award. For guidance on what constitutes the scope of a substantial award, see the descriptions of such awards in the NIH Early Stage Investigator (ESI) program.
- You may not be an awardee of other ASH programs while simultaneously receiving the ASH Scholar Award (such as CRTI or the Bridge Grant).
- Other grants you receive may have their own limitations on concurrent funding. Please check with them.
When is the application due?
Generally, applications are due in very early August. Please check the awards portal for the official date.
If I forget to include a required element of the application after the deadline has passed, can I send it separately to be added in?
No, your application must be complete as of the submission deadline or it will not be reviewed.
Can I change the focus of my research after I submit an LOI?
Yes, but please contact ASH for changes at firstname.lastname@example.org.
What are the format requirements for the documents that are uploaded for the Scholar Award application?
Please follow NIH guidelines found here.
How strong are the restrictions on the page limit of the career development plan and project narrative?
ASH maintains strict guidelines for the Scholar applications. The applicant’s career development plan may not exceed one page with NIH formatting. The applicant’s project narrative may not exceed 6 pages with NIH formatting, excluding references. References should be uploaded with the project narrative document. If the project narrative and/or the career development plan are longer than what is permitted, your application will not be eligible for review.
What if I change institutions after I submit the letter of intent?
Please inform ASH of your transfer prior to submitting the full application- especially if you have a new email address. The new institution must be an eligible institution in the US or Canada.
Please note: an individual from your new institution must serve as either your primary mentor or secondary mentor on your application. Please have the change approved by mailing email@example.com.
What if I know that I am changing institutions but the change comes after the application deadline—which mentors and institution do I use to apply?
Please contact firstname.lastname@example.org as soon as you are aware of this situation.
If I become an Assistant Professor after the LOI deadline but before the application is due, do I still apply as a fellow?
Yes. Your eligibility is determined by your status and/or research experience as of the Letter of Intent deadline.
I have a MD and will have three years of research experience after the Letter of Intent deadline but before the Application is due. Am I still allowed to apply as a fellow?
No. All eligibility qualifiers must be met by the LOI deadline.
How many applications can be submitted from the same institution and its affiliates?
There is no limit to the number of applications your institution and its affiliates can submit. However, no more than two awards will be granted per category/level (basic/translational research fellow, basic/translational research junior faculty, clinical fellow, clinical junior faculty) per ‘medical school’ (8 awards maximum). For this purpose, ASH defines ‘medical school’ to encompass all affiliate institutions (e.g., University of Washington would include the Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center, Seattle Children's Hospital, etc.).
How many applications can be submitted from the same laboratory/primary mentor?
Each laboratory/primary mentor (primary mentor's research program) may submit one application in each of the following categories/levels (maximum of four applications per laboratory/primary mentor):
- Basic/translational research fellow
- Basic/translational research junior faculty
- Clinical research fellow
- Clinical research junior faculty
Can I submit a CV instead of an NIH biosketch?
No, you must use an NIH biosketch format.
I am applying in a fellow category. Can I use the NIH post-doctoral fellowship biosketch format instead of the generic NIH biosketch?
Applicants are strongly encouraged to use the generic NIH biosketch format even while applying in the fellow category. However, a post-doctoral fellow NIH biosketch format will be accepted for Scholar Award fellow applicants.back to top
What qualifies as a resubmission for the ASH Scholar Award?
A resubmission is an ASH Scholar Award where the applicant has submitted an ASH Scholar application in a previous cycle and the current application meets the following criteria:
- the applicant (PI) is the same,
- the applicant is applying in the same category (i.e. Fellow or Junior Faculty),
- the research strategy proposed in the current application is similar in topic to the previous application, such that it contains one or more, research components of prior application, either unchanged or modestly revised.
What is the benefit of the one page response to critiques that accompanies resubmissions?
A resubmission allows you to provide a one page response to critiques and to identify changes in the text, to tell reviewers directly how you have addressed previous critiques, or to explain why you did not address them.
Is there a limit on the number of resubmissions for the ASH Scholar Award?
No, there is no limit to the number of resubmissions for ASH Scholar Award as long as the eligibility requirements continue to be met.back to top
What if I am an independent investigator (junior faculty) and do not have a mentor?
The ASH scholar awards are mentored awards regardless of category (fellow and junior faculty). In order to be eligible to receive a Scholar Award, you must have both a primary mentor and secondary mentor. The mentor's role is to provide oversight and supervision. They must be available throughout the year.
Do both my primary mentor and secondary mentor need to be ASH members?
No. Only one of the two needs to be an ASH member.
How do I know if my primary mentor or secondary mentor is an ASH member?
One option is asking the individual. Another option would be to check ASH's online Member Directory; however, you must be an ASH member to log into this feature. A last resort would be to e-mail email@example.com with your list of potential mentors.
Does my primary mentor have to be from my institution?
Ideally, yes, your primary mentor should be at your institution. However, in some cases, we understand that your mentor may be at another institution. In this case, it is strongly encouraged that if your primary mentor is not from your institution, then your secondary mentor should be.
Does my primary mentor have to use the NIH biosketch for the ASH Scholar Awards?
Yes, the primary mentor must provide an NIH biosketch.
If I have two mentors, can they act as co-mentors?
No. For the purposes of the application, you will need to declare one primary mentor. We recommend you choose one to be your primary mentor and have the other act as your secondary mentor.
What if I want to change mentors?
Please contact firstname.lastname@example.org for appropriate steps.back to top
What should my institutional commitment include?
Letters should include details regarding;
- applicant’s appointment,
- institution’s commitment for protected time,
- resources (independent or otherwise) to perform studies
The letter should be signed by someone who is authorized to make the commitment on behalf of the institution.
What if my primary mentor is the Chair/Head of my department. Who should write the Institutional Commitment letter?
If your primary mentor is the Chair/Head of your department, he or she is allowed to write your Institutional Commitment letter. However, the primary mentor’s letter of recommendation needs to be separate from the Institutional Commitment letter, so he or she will need to write two letters.back to top
What items are allowed to be included within the Scholar Award budget?
Applicants are required to follow the downloadable budget form for allowable items.
Are indirect costs allowed through the ASH Scholar Awards?
No. Indirect costs, which include any institutional costs, are not allowed with any ASH Scholar Award. Acceptable items to be figured into your budget include salary (PI or lab staff), fringe benefits (medical insurance, dental insurance, life insurance, retirement funds), and direct costs (supplies, equipment).
Are travel expenses allowed within the Scholar Award budget?
Travel expenses are allowed for no more than one meeting per year.
What percentage of the budget may be allocated to fringe benefits?
Applicants may only allocate up to 15 percent of their annual Scholar Award budget towards fringe benefits.
Where do I include information regarding expenses for patient care within the Scholar Award budget?
Applicants should include patient care expenses under the supplies for research category.back to top
How do I acknowledge the American Society of Hematology when I publish an article? Do I have a grant number to cite?
There is no grant number associated with your Scholar Award. In the acknowledgement section, please state “Support provided by the American Society of Hematology Scholar Award.”
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