Research Support Initiative (RSI): Helping you achieve your research & scholarly goals

A Message from Liz Rulli, Associate Vice President for Research

At Notre Dame, our goals include advancing human understanding through scholarship and research that seeks to heal, unify, and enlighten. We continue to focus on increasing the scale of our research programs and last year, our faculty spent over 157 million dollars, double the amount spent just six years ago. This is exciting for all of us, but with these growing efforts come growing demands for federal accountability and more requirements for applications, reporting and compliance. We know the paperwork can be overwhelming and tiresome.

Our goal is to help with the administrative side of research so faculty can focus on the research itself. We can help with grant proposals and contracts, projections, buying equipment, developing position descriptions, and even getting reimbursed for travel expenses. We can also help you navigate the myriad of external sponsor systems, as well as our internal grants management system – Cayuse. We serve as a liaison with both sponsors and other departments here at Notre Dame.

The Office of Research has teams located both in the colleges and in the main office in Grace Hall. Please contact us – we’re here to help you achieve your research and scholarly goals.


Faculty and Staff Testimonials about the Research Support Initiative (RSI)

Professor Thomas E. Fuja

Chair, Department of Electrical Engineering

“I have been genuinely impressed by how the Grants Business Management consultants have been willing to expend the time and energy necessary to really understand (and MEET) the needs of the faculty in the College of Engineering.  They have a deep understanding of the university’s business processes, and they bring that knowledge to bear on solving faculty problems with a minimal investment of faculty time.  They have excelled in a variety of roles – as administrative facilitators, as trouble-shooters, and as project managers.” (About Grants Business Management team services)


Professor Mary Prorok

Assistant Chair, Department Chemistry and Biochemistry

“I have used Kara’s help on numerous occasions for preparing, formatting, and proofing the many documents required for multi-PI/interdisciplinary grant proposal submissions and for investigating grant opportunities for our faculty. She has carried out every request in a highly efficient and professional manner. The perspective that Kara, as a scientist, brings to the GBM team cannot be underestimated. I commend the OVPR for their commitment to advancing the research enterprise here at ND through the formation of the GBM team, and I urge PI’s to make use of the unique skill sets that Kara brings to that team.” (About Grants Business Management team services)


Professor Gretchen Reydams-Schils

Chair, Program of Liberal Studies

“The assistance of a Grants Business Manager is indispensable for faculty affiliated with smaller departments, which have limited administrative support. This service saves an individual faculty member countless hours and communications, first to figure out the lay of the land and then to set the necessary processes in motion, with all the laborious  paperwork this involves.  As a result I can fully concentrate on actual research, mentoring a visiting graduate student or post-doc, or collaboration with colleagues.  The A&L Grants Business Coordinator is making a very significant difference in my time-management.” (About Grants Business Management team services)


Belinda Thompson

Program Coordinator, Advanced Diagnostics and Therapeutics (AD&T)

“I utilized the Grants Business Management service for a couple of complex issues recently and it was so helpful.  The coordinator I worked with was very efficient and worked tirelessly to get the issues solved.  She had resources and contacts that would have taken me much longer to establish and secure.  Not only did the resolution happen quickly, but I was kept informed of the details throughout the process so I always knew where things stood.” (About Grants Business Management team services)

“The support services I get from the Office of Research, from the preparation of budget, to the submittal of proposal to the post award services are all highly commendable and help efficient management of my research enterprise.”  (About Pre-Award team services)


Professor Jessica Hellmann

“I cannot imagine managing my grant applications and grant finances without help from the Office of Research. The OR has helped me find creative ways to manage my budgets so that grant funds go as far as possible, including assistance with budget revision requests, no cost extensions, and intelligent budget creation at the time of submission. The OR also helps me keep my spending on track, alerting me when I overspend in one category and helping me reallocate funds as necessary. Whenever I have needed immediate attention for a pending grant they have always been available and professional. My advice for new faculty and faculty seeking new funding is–’talk to the OR early and often!’” (About Post-Award Financial Management team services)


Heather Price

“The Research Contracts and Awards team in the Office of Research has quickly acclimated its new team to really be able to navigate between the researcher and the granting agency. They are good at being able to listen to the researcher and their intentions and goals for their work and then return to the sponsor and discuss the manner in which to match those needs to the University of Notre Dame’s policies and the sponsor’s policies. The communication with the researcher during this process is just right — enough to ensure that our needs are being met but not so much that it becomes cumbersome with technical and legal details. I greatly appreciate the relationships that I have built with the new Contracts and Awards team these last two years.” (About Research Contracts and Awards team services)


Training Testimonials

(About Policy, Training, and Communications team’s training program)

Writing Successful Grants testimonials:

  • Excellent interaction between speaker, visuals, and audience, well –organized and catered to a broad audience.
  • The speaker was very skilled and clearly credible. The handouts will of course be essential when going back on this session at later dates. I’d recommend this to anyone in this part of their career.
  • Most helpful was clarity of speaker’s points and examples; effectiveness of speaker’s real work/practical examples (e.g. reviewers comments and previous applications for funding)
  • Most helpful was ways to double your odds of being funded, successful grant writing exercises and handouts of #7 example project summary.

Career Development Grants for Pre- and Postdocs testimonials:

  • Most helpful was speaker’s knowledge, presentation style, and ability to answer questions from such a broad range of interests
  • Most helpful was the practical hints and examples of documentations