Submitting a UH Extramural Funding Proposal

I. Preparation

A successful proposal is well-developed, clearly defined, and entails cooperation among colleagues and the administrative staff of the University of Hawai'i.  The Office of the Vice President for Research and Innovation and the Office of Research Services (ORS) provides technical assistance in proposal development and maintains up-to-date guidelines from numerous funding agencies.  Funding opportunities and proposal development guidance can be found on the ORS website at

Preparation is the key to a winning proposal.  If this is your first proposal, you may want to discuss the process with someone who has proposal-writing experience, such as a colleague in your department or in your field of expertise.  You will want to inform your Department Chair and/or Vice Chancellor, and fiscal staff, of your intention to submit a proposal as well.  Please note that any extramural funding proposal submitted in your capacity as a University employee is submitted from the University of Hawai'i and is awarded to the University, rather than to an individual. Both you and the University share responsibility for the programmatic and fiscal activities that take place over the course of the sponsored project.

II. Contact ORS

Once you have decided to apply for extramural funding, it is important to inform the ORS Hilo Service Center of your intention.  Contact information may be found at    They are your essential resource in assisting with the proposal preparation and submission process.  They will assist you in accessing the proposal instructions, guidelines and means of submission.  They will also help you determine if the University meets funding eligibility requirements.  The ORS Hilo Service Center staff provides proposal development assistance and resources such as access to forms, institutional legal information, budget development tools, and proposal review.  You are encouraged to contact them at anytime, even while you search for funding or are in the process of developing project ideas.


Extramural funds, including grants and contracts, are administered by the UH Office of Research Services (ORS) using myGRANT, the UH System's online research administration software that is required for use by all UH campuses. myGRANT: As of February 16, 2012, the use of myGRANT is mandatory for all proposal submissions for all UH campuses. Please see ORS  web page for myGRANT information

An approved myGRANT proposal development record is required before an extramural funding proposal may be submitted.  Therefore, it is important to plan ahead and ensure that both campus and ORS approvers have enough time to review the proposal in its entirety.  It is highly recommended that you submit your myGRANT proposal for approval at least two weeks before the sponsor deadline.  If this is not possible, campus and ORS approvers may not have adequate time to properly review your proposal and to offer the best chance for funding.  Sponsors generally recognize a proposal that has been rushed and put together last minute, which potentially lessens chances for funding. 

IV. Proposal Submission

The sponsor will describe proposal submission requirements in the proposal guidelines and instructions.  The means of submitting a proposal will differ between sponsors and sometimes differ by programs within a sponsoring organization.  The majority of federal proposals are submitted electronically while other sponsors may require hard copy proposals to be mailed or delivered.  Be sure to allow adequate time for proposal submission; we recommend allowing a minimum of two business days to submit electronic proposals in case the system rejects them, and five business days if hard copies need to be mailed.  If the proposal instructions require registration with an electronic proposal system, such as, Fastlane, or eRA-Commons, please contact ORS to help with this process.  The University of Hawai'i is already registered with the most common electronic submission systems, such as  If you are submitting an NSF or NIH proposal, you can register through ORS at   ORS specialists are the only individuals authorized to submit proposals on behalf of the University of Hawai'i.  Proposals that have not been processed through ORS risk the possibility that the University may not be able to accept resulting award funds.Again, it is imperative that you contact the ORS Hilo Service Center early in your proposal development process. For more information  please see ORS web site on Proposal submission and review process

ORS staff members are trained to assist proposal developers throughout the process and to make the submission as seamless as possible.  Contacting ORS Hilo Service Center staff assigned to your unit and begin planning the proposal development process as early as possible.