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UCSF Research Development Office (RDO): Grant Templates and Guides: Background

What is a Diversity Supplement?

What is a Diversity Supplement?
The NIH provides funding to attract minority trainees and faculty to research careers. NIH Research Supplements to Promote Diversity in Health-Related Research (PA-23-189; hereafter “Diversity Supplements”) provide additional funding for trainees and faculty to work on an existing NIH-funded project in a particular area of interest. Here is some additional information:

  • Diversity Supplements can support all levels of trainees, from high school through college, graduate school, and postgraduate studies to the investigator level.
  • Supplements must support work within the scope of the original project.
  • There is generally no set deadline, but applications must be submitted at least 10 weeks before the desired start date of the project activity.
  • Supplements are much less competitive than peer-reviewed grant funding mechanisms and can provide an excellent entry point for a research career.
  • Budget requests must follow the budget cycle of the existing grant.
  • Supplemental funding may not extend beyond the existing grant’s project end date.

Why are Diversity Supplements important?

Why are Diversity Supplements important to UCSF and to UCSF researchers?

As one of the PRIDE values, diversity is integral to UCSF’s mission. Chancellor Sam Hawgood has stated that Equity and Inclusion is one of his four priority areas. Diversity among researchers improves scientific inquiry, increases diversity among research participants, and ensures that the innovative research done at UCSF has the greatest impact on an increasingly diverse population. Principal Investigators with successful Diversity Supplements at UCSF have commented on the additional benefits of having these trainees, including a more inclusive work environment and a better understanding of how qualities such as resilience can impact scientific pursuit. In addition, “Contribution to Diversity” is required in the faculty advancement packet.

UCSF hosts a matchmaking event for trainees who currently have or will have a bachelor's degree by June of a given year and who are eligible for an NIH Diversity Supplement to meet UCSF investigators and discuss research opportunities funded through diversity supplements. Trainees who apply for the event will have the opportunity to have short, 10-minute interviews with faculty in related research areas. In addition, trainees who make a match will be able to apply to the UCSF PROPEL Program (, which is a new post-baccalaureate program. Trainees & Faculty interested in attending the matchmaking event please check out the program website - On this website, there is also FAQ information for faculty applicants on diversity supplements for both trainees or faculty of diverse backgrounds.