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The American Association of Immunologists

Grant Review for Immunologists Program (GRIP)

Get a GRIP: An AAI program designed to help early-career investigators prepare their NIH grant proposals


The AAI Grant Review for Immunologists Program (GRIP) offers new principal investigators (PIs) access to established PIs for guidance in preparing grant proposals as they embark on their independent research careers in immunology.

AAI volunteers strive to match early-career investigator applicants with PIs outside of their own institutions having experience in the proposed areas of research. Participation in the program is strictly voluntary and is not intended to supplant internal mentoring programs at applicants' own institutions.

Program Details

Program: GRIP serves as a referral resource to match early-career PIs (assistant professors or equivalents) with established PIs who have experienced significant success in winning grants to support their research careers. Currently, only R01 and R15 grant proposals are reviewed through the GRIP program. To initiate the process, the early-career PI submits a CV and the grant's "Specific Aims" page to the GRIP coordinator (an AAI member who has been appointed by the AAI Council) who, with the assistance of a small subcommittee, will match the topic of the proposal with the research experience of an established PI. The GRIP coordinator will inquire about potential conflicts of interest between established PIs/their institutions and the early-career PI and will resolve any concerns to both parties' satisfaction prior to completing the match. Once united, the two PIs can communicate either by phone or email to establish an understanding on the proposal, the potential study sections that may review the proposal, and the time frame for the early-career PI to send the proposal to the established PI. Early-career PIs may submit new grant proposals or proposals that have been previously reviewed at an NIH study section (including triaged grants). Matches are made as quickly as possible to allow participants to meet impending NIH grant deadlines, but requests should be received no later than 8 weeks prior to a grant deadline.

Early-career PIs must be aware that there is a strong possibility that their proposal may not be selected for the GRIP program; reasons for this may include a shortage of established PIs or a lack of established PIs with appropriate expertise. The decision of the GRIP coordinator with respect to accepting an early-career PI's proposal is final. Early-career PIs should also understand that this referral program offers guidance only. Neither AAI nor the established PI is responsible in any way for a proposal's ultimate funding or lack thereof.

Eligibility: Early-career PIs (assistant professors or equivalents) must be AAI Regular members in good standing at the time the proposal is submitted. Currently, only R01 and R15 grant proposals are mentored through the GRIP program.

To apply: Please send your CV and the grant's "Specific Aims" page to infoaai@aai.org (please write "GRIP" in the subject line).

Interested in volunteering as an established PI mentor? Established PIs are not be expected to review more than one proposal per year. Neither is the total annual time commitment for a mentor expected to exceed 10 hours. The established PI has the right of refusal for any reason whatsoever (time commitment, conflict-of-interest, etc.). If you are interested in volunteering as a mentor, please send your CV and a brief description of your grant reviewing experience to infoaai@aai.org (please write "GRIP" in the subject line).


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