(CLOSED) Reaching a New Energy Sciences Workforce for High Energy Physics (RENEW-HEP) (DE-FOA-0002759)

Sponsor Name: 
Description of the Award: 

The DOE SC High Energy Physics (HEP) program hereby announces its interest in receiving applications for the REaching a New Energy sciences Workforce for High Energy Physics (RENEW-HEP) initiative. This program is intended to support training and research experiences in support of particle physics for members of underserved communities, with the dual goals of : (1) increasing the likelihood that participants from underrepresented populations, such as those present at minority serving institutions (MSIs)1, will pursue a career in a Science, Technology, Engineering or Math (STEM) related field; and (2) supporting investigators and building research infrastructure at institutions that have not traditionally been part of the particle physics portfolio.

This program is informed and influenced by the recommendations in recent reports including the American Institute of Physics TEAM-UP report (AIP TEAM-UP Report webpage, n.d.) . Applicants to this FOA should be aware of factors identified within that report that may influence the success or failure of trainees funded through this FOA. Some of the most relevant factors include the creation of an environment conducive to the development of a sense of belonging amongst participants, success in fostering a strong sense of physics identity among the participants, and the availability of support to “help students advance academically while earning money”. In addition, the longer duration of the traineeships envisioned here can provide opportunities for more senior participants to help mentor incoming participants, an activity that can support the desire to give back to one’s community and further bolsters physics identity.

Awards for traineeships are expected to include support for research in the particle physics portfolio as articulated in DE-FOA-0002546. Applications from MSIs are particularly sought, though it is anticipated that groups from research institutions where substantial research infrastructure is already in place may play an important role in recruiting and hosting participants or cohorts of participants from neighboring institutions, either directly or through partnering arrangements.

This FOA will support a program in which the concept of traineeships to broaden diversity in particle physics will be evaluated. Applicants are cautioned that renewal funding, subject to the availability of future appropriations, is contingent on the success and achievements of the overall traineeship initiative. At present, HEP does not expect, encourage, or prohibit any recipient under this FOA from submitting future applications for renewal funding.

Program Objective
The goal of this program is to help broaden and diversify the high energy physics community. We want to draw from the broadest possible pool of STEM talent within the U.S, at both the individual and institutional level to thereby help ensure the continued success of our mission. Historically, our community has been drawn primarily from a pool of potential talent that is less diverse than the general U.S. population, and has been concentrated at larger, research-intensive academic centers. For example, African American and Hispanic students are underrepresented within the ranks of students receiving a Ph.D. in particle physics by a factor of five or more compared to their numbers in the general U.S. population. The particle physics program also seeks to develop stronger connections to programs and activities at Tribally Controlled Colleges and Universities as one of our high priority future facilities is partially located in the Black Hills. Applications from Professional Societies are expressly encouraged for their potential ability to meet these objectives.

Some of the barriers identified to diversity and equity in HEP include: lack of sufficient mentoring , support networks, or recruitment, outreach and professional culture of inclusion at “traditional” HEP research institutions; lack of research infrastructure and support at institutions that have not traditionally received HEP funding, possibly disadvantaging them in the competitive review process; the need for additional support for faculty at institutions with large teaching loads; and general financial barriers to students pursuing degrees in STEM fields. Applications should specifically address how they will address these barriers via mentoring plans, outreach and inclusion strategies, support for research infrastructure, and/or adequate student or faculty support, as appropriate.

Expectations for Traineeships
The award term is expected to be 36 months. Traineeships should typically be one to two years in duration and should typically provide 15 hours of support per week averaged over the academic year and 40 hours during the summer. Traineeships may extend after graduation for one “gap” year for participants who intend to apply or are considering applying to graduate schools; or for initial support for one or two years on entrance to a STEM graduate program.

Limit (Number of applicants permitted per institution): 
Sponsor Final Deadline: 
Aug 15, 2022
OSVPR Application or NOI Instructions: 

If you intend to submit complete the notification form to provide your contact information and the title and brief description of your project.

If interest exceeds the institutional limit the Office of the Senior Vice President for Research will coordinate a downselect.

To be considered as a Penn State institutional nominee, please submit a notice of intent by the date provided directly below.
Penn State OSVPR NOI Deadline: 
Wednesday, June 15, 2022 - 4:00pm
This limited submission is in downselect: 
Penn State may only submit a specific number of proposals to this funding opportunity. The number of NOIs received require that an internal competition take place, thus, a downselect process has commenced. No Penn State researchers may apply to this opportunity outside of this downselect process. To apply for this limited submission, please use this link:
For help or questions: 

Questions concerning the limited submissions process may be submitted to limitedsubs@psu.edu.

No Applicants, Now first come, first served - Contact LimitedSubs@psu.edu if you wish to apply