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Sponsored Programs Administration (SPA)

Many government funding organizations, including the National Institutes of Health (NIH), the National Science Foundation (NSF), the National Endowment for the Humanities (NEH), and the Departments of Defense and Energy, as well as some private organizations, make awards to students and faculty through their affiliated institutions rather than to them personally. Any awards made to Vanderbilt University necessitate the involvement of the Sponsored Programs Administration (SPA) office (*

You are encouraged to consult your department’s grant administrator or administrative officer(s) who are familiar with proposal submissions to obtain as much background information as possible before submitting your proposal to SPA. Marion Pratt, A&S Grants Resource Officer, is also available to help with drafting grant proposals for departments in the social sciences and humanities (

The SPA website offers guidance as well as many helpful links to assist you in the submission process, including information on institutional codes and designations, calculation of fringe benefits, tax forms, and indirect cost rates. SPA staff can assist with proposal preparation, submission, and tracking. The office also provides non-financial post-award administration and management support.


*Following the 2016 re-organization of Vanderbilt University and Vanderbilt University Medical Center (VUMC), the Office of Sponsored Programs (OSP) and the Office of Contracts Management (OCM) now support VUMC.