RFA Details


RFA Announcement: February 1, 2022

Applications Due: April 20, 2022

Endorsements Due: May 4, 2022

Review Process Due: July 6, 2022

Funding Decisions Announced: Late July, 2022

Funding Start Date: October 1, 2022


The KL2/Catalyst Medical Research Investigator Training (CMeRIT) award provides two years of salary support at 50-75% of the awardee’s institutional salary base within NIH guidelines. Educational programs within Harvard Catalyst will be tuition-free. Funding for awardees begins October 1, 2022. There are no indirect costs associated with this award.

Overview and Goals

The KL2/CMeRIT program provides advanced training in clinical and translational research to senior fellows and junior faculty from all health professions represented by Harvard Catalyst, including medicine, dentistry, and nursing.

Awardees will pursue a mentored research project in their area of expertise. It is expected that the research performed within the KL2/CMeRIT program will provide the basis for an independent NIH award (e.g., K23, K08, or R01).

Awardees will also pursue an educational program that fulfills the mission of the program and provides optimal training in their chosen career objectives. They may do this by taking part in the courses found in Learn Research, where applicable, or by participating in Harvard Catalyst-based courses.

Each awardee will work with his/her mentor to develop and execute a work plan for his/her research project. Mentors must be accomplished investigators in clinical and translational research and have a track record of success in training new investigators and fostering their success as independent researchers. An advisory committee will connect each awardee with a group of experienced clinicians and researchers to provide additional resources in the fields of genetics, biostatistics, biomarkers, and imaging.


We are committed to increasing diversity in the research workforce. Therefore, we encourage applicants from underrepresented minorities in medicine (URiM) backgrounds.

We encourage applicants from all health disciplines who meet the following criteria:

  • Must be a U.S. citizen or permanent resident holding a green card by the application deadline, April 20, 2022 (those with visa status are not eligible to apply).
  • Must hold a research or health professional doctoral degree.
  • Must be in the first three years of their first faculty appointment from any institution or fellows who are on the cusp of their first faculty position (within 6-12 months) and can devote 75% of their time to research training.
  • Must be able to commit 75% of professional effort to the program except for surgeons, who maybe eligible to commit as little as 50% of time.
  • Must ensure the remaining funding (not provided by Harvard Catalyst) will come from a non-federal source.
  • Must not be or have been a principal investigator on an NIH R01, or a project leader on a subproject of a Program Project (P01), Center (P50, P60, U54), mentored career development grant (K23, K08, K01,etc.), or equivalent non-PHS peer-reviewed research grants that are more than $100,000 in direct costs per year.
  • At the time this application is submitted and under review (from May 25 to the beginning of August) must not have a current application for another mentored K award (e.g. K23, K08) submitted, or under review. For further clarification, please see the NIH website.
  • Must propose a clinical translational research project.
  • Must be pursuing a career path and proposed program in clinical and translational research.
  • Must hold a full time position at one or more Harvard affiliated institutions.
Proposal Submission Information

You will not be able to save the application as it is filled out.
Please be prepared to provide the following information.

Part 1 – The Application and Supporting Documents

  • Full name
  • Email
  • Degree
  • Research interests
  • Position/rank
  • Citizenship status
  • Phone number
  • Home contact information
  • Primary institution and department
  • Work contact information

Supporting documents (to be uploaded as a PDF):

  • Current NIH Biosketch * new format required
  • Signed PHS 398 Face Page (to be uploaded as a PDF)
  • Research Proposal:
  1. Section A: Describe the general area of research in which you are interested and your reasons for choosing this area. Limit your response to 400 words.
  2. Section B: Provide a summary of your previous research experience (projects).Particularly useful would be a summary of a completed project that has been submitted for publication or has been published. Limit your response to 400 words.
  3. Section C: Provide a summary of your previous formal educational activities. If you have participated in a degree program in addition to or instead of an MD degree, please provide a brief description of the program’s objectives. If you have taken previous formal course work relevant to clinical and translational research, provide a brief description of each course. Limit your response to 200 words.
  4. Section D: Describe the proposed educational component of your research program and how it will enhance your research project. Limit your response to 200 words.
  5. Section E: Please provide a general outline of the project(s) in which you will participate during the tenure of your involvement in the KL2/CMeRIT Program. Please provide as much detail as possible, including hypothesis, specific aims, background, methods, statistics, and potential pitfalls. If you do not have a specific project, describe in general what your project(s) might be. Limit your response to 1,250 words. You can include up to a total of four tables/figures.
  6. Section F: What were the reasons for your mentor selection(s)? Limit your response to 150 words.
  7. Section G: Describe your short-term and long-term career goals. Limit your response to 200 words.
  8. Section H: Please include a brief statement on the clinical translational significance. Limit your response to 100 words.

Part 2 – The Endorsements
Please have the following information ready:

  • Division chief/department chair’s name, email, primary institution, and department/division
  • Primary mentor’s name, email, primary institution, and department/division
  • Optional secondary mentor’s name, email, primary institution, and department/division

The individuals you list on the endorsements page as your division chief/department chair, primary mentor, and optional secondary mentor will receive an email with a link directing them to a secure website where they will be prompted to upload their individual letters of recommendation in PDF format. They will not have access to your application materials. These endorsements include:

  • Signed letter of support (PDF format) from your division chief/department chair, guaranteeing 50-75% protected time through the duration of the KL2/CMeRIT award to pursue the education and research goals of the program.
  • Signed letter of recommendation (PDF format) from your primary mentor, guaranteeing that the remaining funding (not provided by Harvard Catalyst) will come from non-federal funds through the duration of theKL2/CMeRIT award.
  • Optional additional letter of recommendation (PDF format) from a secondary mentor.
Letters of Support Review Criteria

Reviewers will assess whether the letters of support express the potential and commitment to the planned academic career program and the likelihood that the program will meet the candidate’s career goals.

Letter from division chief/department chair:

  • Is there clear commitment of the sponsoring institution to ensure that 50-75% of the candidate’s full-time professional effort will be devoted directly to the research and career development activities described in the application, with the remaining percent effort being devoted to an appropriate balance of research, teaching, administrative, and clinical responsibilities?
  • Is the institutional commitment to the career development of the candidate appropriately strong?
  • Is there an adequate level of assurance from the institution that the candidate will be an integral part of the research program?

Letters from mentor(s):

  • Is there clear commitment of the mentor(s) to ensure that the remaining funding (not provided by Harvard Catalyst) will come from non-federal funds through the duration of the award?
  • Are there adequate plans for monitoring and evaluating the candidate’s research and career development progress?
  • Are the mentor’s research qualifications in the area of the proposed research appropriate?
  • Do (es) the mentor(s) adequately address the candidate’s potential and his/her strengths and are as needing improvement?
Review Process

Completed applications submitted by 5:00pm on April 20, 2022 with all required endorsements submitted by 6:00pm on May 4, 2022, will be assigned reviewers. The review process will occur from mid- May through mid-July. Once the review process is concluded, a Study Section will convene in mid-July, 2022 and funding decisions will be issued in the early part of August 2022. There will be NO interviews for this application cycle.

Applicants will be notified of funding decisions via email, which will be the primary mode of communication.


What is the KL2/CMeRIT Award salary cap?

Salary caps are determined by the NIH. The cap for this award is 160K.

How can I access a PHS 398 Face Page template?

The PHS 398 Face Page template may be found on the NIH website.

On my PHS 398 Face Page, who is the institutional official?

The institutional official is the person in charge of your institutional funding. This is usually a grants manager or financial administrator. The face page MUST be signed by your institution.

Is a budget outline required with the KL2/CMeRIT application?

No budget outline is required; only salary and fringe.

Does the word count include graphics? What about citations?

Graphics and citations are not counted against the application’s overall word count. We do ask, however, that you consider the reviewers’ time when writing your application. Please keep all graphics, citations, etc. to a minimum.

What if I'm on the verge of going over the three-year faculty appointment limit?

The KL2/CMeRIT Award is a junior investigator grant. The three-year faculty appointment limit provides a cut-off point for eligibility to be funded. The three-year limit will include all institutions currently or previously appointed. Should you be on “the edge” of your third faculty year, you are more than welcome to apply. However, if the third year of your first faculty appointment ends prior to the application deadline of April 20, 2022 the Review Committee reserves the right to refuse consideration of your application.