University of Southern California


NSF-21-536: National Science Foundation Research Traineeship Program (NRT)

Slots:                                                    An eligible organization may participate in two proposals per competition. USC has one remaining slot open for this competition. Participation includes serving as a lead organization, non-lead organization, or subawardee on any proposal. Organizations participating solely as evaluators on projects are excluded from this limitation. Proposals that exceed the organizational eligibility limit (beyond the first two submissions based on timestamp) will be returned without review regardless of the organization’s role (lead organization, non-lead collaborative, or subawardee) in the returned proposal. Only US IHEs are eligible to submit as a lead or non-lead organization.

Internal Deadline:                          Contact the Office of Research if interested.

External Deadline:                        February 25, 2021

Recurring Deadlines:                 September 6, 2021; September 6, annually thereafter

Award Information:                   Type: Grant

Estimated Number of Awards: 18 to 20

Anticipated Amount: $55,000,000.

NRT Track 1 Awards (14-16 awards each year) are expected to be up to five (5) years in duration with a total budget up to $3,000,000.

NRT Track 2 Awards (4-6 awards each year) are expected to be up to five (5) years in duration with a total budget up to $2,000,000.

Submission Process:                     PIs must submit their application as a Limited Submission through the Office of Research Application Portal:

Materials to submit:

Link to Award:                        

Who May Serve as PI:                    The PI must be on the faculty of the submitting institution.


The NRT Program is dedicated to supporting highly effective training of STEM graduate students in high priority interdisciplinary or convergent research areas through the use of comprehensive traineeship models that are innovative, evidence-based, and aligned with changing workforce and research needs.

Goals of the program are to:

Creation of sustainable programmatic capacity at institutions is an expected outcome. Proposals should describe mechanisms to institutionalize effective training elements after award expiration.

NRT projects demonstrate comprehensive approaches to graduate training and should include the following key features that are central to the NRT Program:

Visit our Institutionally Limited Submission webpage for updates and other announcements.