PumpPrimer II Guidelines


PumpPrimer II (PPII) funds innovative pilot research to help the applicant establish a novel research direction.


All tenure track faculty are eligible to apply. Applicants must have a strong track record of research productivity and provide evidence that no alternative funds are available for the project. Applications that merely extend an ongoing research program are not eligible. Junior faculty who have start-up funding remaining and/or have not yet completed their first term of appointment are ineligible to apply. Application for external funding on a prior PPII award is a prerequisite for a new PPII funding request. Preference for funding will be given to those who have not received a PPII award within the last 3 years. Faculty who receive PPII funding are expected to review applications in future funding cycles.


Budget requests for up to $50,000 will be considered for a one-year period; no-cost extensions are not allowed. Funds may not be used for faculty salary or travel, other than travel essential for research purposes. For those projects that require extended time away from campus during the semester, funding for teaching relief can be requested. Budgets that include teaching relief will require department chair and appropriate AS&E dean approval with the application.


A review committee comprised of AS&E faculty will make funding recommendations to the Dean’s Office for final approval.


Via the application website using PumpPrimer II application form(s).

Apply for PumpPrimer II

Submission Deadline

Applications are due by 5 p.m. on Wednesday, October 25, 2023.

Required Materials

Prepare the following PumpPrimer II (PP II) proposal items and upload to the application website:

  • Cover sheet
    • Project title
    • Project lead
    • Collaborators and their institutions
    • Amount requested
  • Research plan:
    • Explain why this research direction is significant and innovative (.5 page max)
    • Explain how the requested pilot funding will help you secure extramural funding (.5 page max)
    • Explain how this new research direction is distinct from your current research program (.5 page max)
    • Summarize the goal of the new research direction this pilot project will enable (.5 page max)
    • The research plan should be in plain text for non-specialist consideration
    • Use Times New Roman, in 11-point font with one-inch margins
  • CV: Provide the resumes for the lead PI and other significant collaborators (four pages max. in NSF, NIH, or NEH style)
  • Budget:
    • Provide an itemized budget including a brief justification for each line item:
      • Funds may not be used for faculty salary or travel, other than travel essential to the project
      • Funds for teaching relief must be approved by the chair and dean
  • Current and pending support:
    • For each participating faculty member who has external grant support, provide:
      • Funder, title, duration, and amount of all active and pending awards
      • A brief summary of the projects
      • Support for the lead PI and significant collaborators over the past five years
  • Department chair endorsement (start application early so chair may respond!):
    • What is the project's importance to the investigator and the department?
    • How will PP II support lead to extramural funding that would otherwise not be obtained?
    • Does the faculty have other internal funding that could be allocated to the proposed project?
    • What is your plan for departmental cost-sharing?
      • Departments with resources to share the cost of this project with the Dean's Office are expected to do so (e.g., actual cash outlay, technical staff salaries, support for summer students, etc.)

*Please note that faculty who receive PumpPrimer funds will be asked to review applications in future cycles. We are dependent upon and appreciate your cooperation with the review process.


Please direct any questions to your respective AS&E assistant dean.