The Sponsored Projects Office (SPO) supports the scholarship, research, teaching, and programmatic missions of the University by providing a full range of services to faculty and staff at every stage of the grant process. From initial inquiry, through proposal development, review and submission, to grant and award management, and final closeout, the SPO is here to serve WOU.
The SPO also establishes WOU policies related to sponsored project funding, is the authorized representative on grant submissions, and serves as the formal institutional liaison with external sponsors.
The SPO provides guidance on submitting competitive, well-written grant applications. We can work one-on-one with faculty and with grant writing teams. We develop and deliver grant writing education programs and workshops for faculty. We interpret federal regulations to effectively comply with funding agency requirements. Throughout the grant life cycle, the SPO fosters relationships internally and externally and is here to advance institutional growth.
The Pre-award Manager can help you conceptualize a project idea. Generating a project idea will help develop strategies for finding funding.
The Pre-award Manager can help find funding opportunities that align with project needs and interests. For federal grants, Grants.gov is a great resource. State and local funding resources can be found on ORPIN, and Senator Merkely’s Grants Opportunities Newsletter, and RACC. Learn how and where to look. Finding funding is one of the hardest parts of research development. Looking regularly and engaging in the pursuit will expand potential sources. If the funding source is a private or corporate foundation, contact the WOU Foundation to discuss your project.
Once a project and a funding source have been identified, start developing your proposal. Work with the Pre-award Manager on your budget (Excel file) and Intent to Submit form (PDF). Talk with your Department and Division Chairs and consult with your Division or College Business Manager about how the award will be managed if funded. As a general rule, it takes about four to six weeks to prepare a well-written, competitive proposal. Start early.
When a proposal is ready to submit, Department and Division Chairs, and Dean signatures are required. The SPO is the University’s authorized officiant that approves ALL proposal submissions to sponsors. Project directors must have SPO approval before submitting. If proposals are submitted without authorization, the university is not obligated to accept awarded funds. The Routing Form is the form needed to secure signature approvals. Ideally, proposals should be ready for submission one week prior to the deadline. If receiving a contract, work with the SPO to establish a budget, justification, and scope of work. The SPO team will help route the contract to the General Counsel for signature approval.
Once your project is underway, work with your division or college business manager to manage your grant funds. The Post-award Manager can serve as a resource.
Once your project is complete, you will need to closeout the project. Work with the Post-award Manager to make sure you comply with the funder’s guidance and WOU policies and procedures.
During and after your project, you should plan to disseminate the information and data generated. This is done via sending Policy briefs to any interested audience, publishing, presentations, website updates. Work with the Pre- and Post-award Managers to develop content for internal and external audiences, by posting content to the Research at Western blog, and publishing your work in journals appropriate to your field.