Where does funding for this FIRST program come from?

Funding for FIRST comes from the NIH Common Fund. The FOAs will be administered by a trans-NIH team, led by the National Cancer Institute (NCI) and National Institute on Minority Health Disparities (NIMHD) together with a group of NIH staff from multiple institutes, centers, and offices across the NIH.

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What types of institutions are encouraged to apply to this funding?

Applications are encouraged from a diversity of institutions that conduct research in any NIH mission area. Applications may be from Limited-Resourced Institutions (LRI), Highly Resourced Institutions (HRI), or propose Partnerships (any composition of HRI and/or LRI). Additionally, the following types of Higher Education Institutions are always encouraged to apply for NIH support as Public of Private Institutions of Higher Education:

  • Hispanic-serving Institution
  • Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCUs)
  • Tribally Controlled Colleges and Universities (TCCUs)
  • Alaska Native and Native Hawaiian Serving Institutions
  • Asian American Native American Pacific Islander Serving Institutions (AANAPISIs)

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Is there a particular scientific focus for this program?

All biomedical research areas within the NIH mission are included in this funding announcement.

Learn more about the NIH Mission and Goals.

Why is this FIRST program funded through the NIH Common Fund?

The Common Fund supports programs that are intended to have a transformative impact on biomedical research conducted across all NIH Institutes and Centers. Common Fund programs encourage highly innovative approaches to broadly relevant challenges, coordination among awardees, and rapid dissemination of results and lessons learned. These programs represent NIH-wide priorities, and program areas are selected with input from all Institute and Center Directors and from extramural scientists. Common Fund support of the FIRST program is indicative of the recognition by NIH Leadership that talent from all sectors of the population is necessary to accomplish the NIH mission. This program is a high priority for NIH as a whole.

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