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HEAL Initiative: Notice of Special Interest (NOSI): Limited Competition to Support Mentorship of Junior Investigators
This Notice of Special Interest (NOSI) provides an opportunity for researchers funded by the Helping to End Addiction Long-Term (HEAL) initiative to devote more time to patient-oriented research and mentoring. For the purposes of the K24 award, patient-oriented research is defined as research conducted with human subjects for which an investigator (or colleague) directly interacts with human subjects. This area of research includes: 1) therapeutic interventions, and 2) clinical trials. NIH ICs participating in HEAL are issuing this notice to highlight their interest in receiving applications from HEAL investigators for a K24 award.
The NIH defines a mentor as experienced scientist who can help guide the research of junior investigators and challenge them to develop independence as researchers.
The objectives of mentoring include enhancing a mentee’s approach to scientific investigation, developing their critical thinking and communication skills and assisting with their progression within the research community.
Mentoring responsibilities involve helping junior investigators to define research goals, supporting the achievement of those goals, and discussing and evaluating progress throughout training. A mentor should provide constructive and timely feedback, support training, networking and professional development opportunities, and acknowledge a mentee’s contribution to research.
The award is intended to provide protected time for established investigators supported by the HEAL Initiative to simultaneously engage in patient-oriented HEAL research and mentoring, so that they receive clinically relevant research experience through participation in the HEAL grant.
These K24 awards will fund protected time to engage in patient-oriented research and mentor junior investigators (early career investigators, residents, or post-doctoral fellows), to provide them with the tools and skills needed to gain expertise in the area of clinical pain research.
Applicants should develop a mentoring plan tailored toward specific junior investigators, with activities such as the following:
- Fostering the research interests and experiences of residents and fellows
- Programs that draw Ph.D. laboratory-based and translational scientists into more clinical research
- Advising trainees and junior investigators on NIH submissions
- Guiding early investigator career development
- Other mentoring activities as appropriate
This notice applies to the standard due date on June 12, 2021 and expires on June 13, 2021.