Please use Route 301 to submit your proposal to the Eshelman Institute for Innovation. An overview of the proposal submission process is outlined on this page. For a more detailed explanation of the application process, refer to the Route 301 Instruction Manual. Please note that a UNC ONYEN is required to access Route 301.

Before you start, it is recommended that you review our funding tiers and criteria to ensure that your idea aligns with the vision and mission of the Eshelman Institute for Innovation.

Direct all questions to Mieke Lynch at

 Step 1: Project Outline

  • Project Title
  • Area of Submission
  • Tier
  • Duration
  • Team: Please list all co-innovators, collaborators, and personnel affiliated with this project.
    • For Tiers 1, 2, and 3 faculty and staff proposals, the Institute will fund the salaries and fringe benefits of students, postdocs, and research support staff such as technicians/associates, software engineers, etc. The Institute will NOT fund any faculty salaries (i.e., the salaries of tenure-track, clinical track, or research track faculty, whether new or existing).
    • For Tier 4 proposals, the Institute will fund faculty salaries for NEW proposed faculty hires ONLY; the Institute will not fund faculty salaries for any existing faculty (i.e., the salaries of tenure-track, clinical track or research track faculty). The Institute will fund salaries of students, postdocs, and research support staff as above for Tiers 1, 2, and 3).
  • Supervisor: Use the following guidelines to correctly add your supervisor.
    • Faculty: Division Chair
    • Staff: Direct supervisor
    • PharmD Students: Faculty mentor. Students are required to select a member of the UNC Eshelman School of Pharmacy faculty to serve as a mentor for your project.
    • Graduate Students: Faculty mentor AND Graduate Advisor
    • Postdoctoral Fellows: Faculty mentor AND Postdoctoral Advisor
  • Abstract: Please limit to 200 words.

 Step 2: Budget and Resources

The preparation and inclusion of an initial budget is required. You will use this section to build your budget, disclose other sources of funding, and identify any other resources that may be needed to support your project. Your budget must be approved by the Office of Research Administration before you can submit your proposal. To ensure the Office of Research Administration has adequate time to approve the budget, please complete and submit the budget section of your application at least seven business days prior to the proposal submission deadline.

When building your budget, please consider project expenses in the following areas:

  • Personnel: For Tiers 1, 2, and 3 faculty and staff proposals, the Institute will fund the salaries and fringe benefits of students, postdocs, and research support staff such as technicians/associates, software engineers, etc. The Institute will NOT fund any faculty salaries (i.e., the salaries of tenure track, clinical track, or research track faculty, whether new or existing). For Tier 4 proposals, the Institute will fund faculty salaries for NEW proposed faculty hires ONLY. If you have questions about salary for TBD or ‘to be named’ personnel, please consult with Dina Sikora and Raj Kshatriya.
  • Consultants: Purchased services and contract costs.
  • Travel: Costs associated with traveling to conferences, etc.
  • Other Direct Costs: Costs that can be identified specifically with your project, an instructional activity, or any other institutional activity, or that can be directly assigned to such activities relatively easily with a high degree of accuracy.
  • Equipment: An article of tangible nonexpendable personal property that has a useful life of more than one year and an acquisition cost per unit that equals or exceeds $5,000.
  • Other: Include any miscellaneous expenses and explain the need in detail.
  • Subcontracts: If you are working with collaborators at institutions outside of the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, the Institute requires signed documentation that contains the following statement from the authorized institutional grants office at the collaborating institution: “The attached budget is consistent with the institutional policies and budgeting guidelines of [insert institution name] and has been reviewed and approved by our authorized institutional official.” 

Please note: The Institute will NOT fund tuition. The Institute will NOT fund overhead, indirect or F&A costs from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill or from any external collaborating partners or institutions.

Additional information to be provided in Step 2:

  • Budget Justification: Should address each of major cost categories and explains the necessity and basis for the proposed cost.
  • Non-EII Funding: The Eshelman Institute for Innovation encourages leveraged funding to support your innovation. Please indicate the amount and describe any and all existing funding that supports this innovation. Please also describe your plans to apply for competitive funding and outline any funding that you anticipate receiving. If you have a written agreement or notice of award to offer proof of Non-EII Funding, please upload as a PDF in the space provided.
  • Additional Resources: Indicate whether your project will require additional support or services from the following departments: Educational Technology, Facilities, Finance (Business Operations), Human Resources, Information Technology, Marketing and Communications, Research Administration, or Other.

 Step 3: Proposal and Policies

Proposal Summary: Your proposal summary should address the following:

  • The Problem: Describe the problem and unmet need that motivates your unique solution.
  • Innovative Solution: Describe the proposed innovation to solve the Problem and how it is differentiated from other solutions.
  • Customer or User: Describe the likely user(s) of this innovative solution, i.e., who or what is your customer?
  • Evidence and Prior Art: For Tiers 2, 3 and 4 proposals, outline the evidence and prior work in the area by others and/or the evidence or previous studies by the innovator. Enough evidence should be included in the application to demonstrate that the project is feasible and that the innovator is likely to complete the project successfully within the duration of the award
  • Specific Aims, Approach and Deliverables: State your specific aims, your approach, and your anticipated deliverables.
  • Impact: Describe the breakthrough impact(s) that your project will have including (as appropriate), scientific, translational, patient, educational and/or practice impacts.
  • Sustainability and Next Steps: Describe your plan for sustaining this work and/or program post award through additional funding, intellectual property protection, licensing, curricular changes, formation of startups, etc.

Formatting and Length: Upload your proposal summary as a PDF in the space provided. All proposals should abide by the following formatting guidelines:

  • Margins: At least half-inch
  • Font: No smaller than 11-point Times New Roman or its equivalent
  • Spacing: Single or exactly 12-point line spacing
  • Header: Please include your name, project title and funding tier in the header of each page of the proposal.

Please review the proposal summary page limits for each funding tier listed below:

  • Tier 1: two pages
  • Tier 2: five pages
  • Tier 3: five pages
  • Tier 4: six pages
  • Student & Postdoctoral Fellow Proposals: two pages

For all tiers, in addition to your proposal summary, you can include up to two pages of pivotal references.

Additional information to be provided in Step 3: 

  • Timeline for Completion of Aims: In the space provided, outline the timeline for completion of key milestones and deliverables associated with each aim.
  • CV, Resume, or BioSketch: You are required to upload a CV, resume or NIH BioSketch for all co-innovators and collaborators. The system will prompt you to upload a CV, resume, or BioSketch for each co-innovator and collaborator added to your team in Step 1: Project Outline. Please upload all CVs, resume BioSketchs as PDFs.
  • Additional Attachments: Use this section to upload any other items that further illustrate or demonstrate support for your innovation as described in your proposal. For instance, letters of support from external collaborators for Tier 4 proposals are highly encouraged. For those interested, you may also upload a video to support your proposal. Videos should be no longer than three minutes in length. Please provide a brief description of all uploaded attachments in the space provided.
  • Patent & Invention Policy: Please review the UNC Patent & Invention Policy. You must agree to its terms and conditions before submitting your proposal.
  • Compliance: All awarded proposals that involve conflict of interest, human subjects, animal subjects, intellectual property, specified research materials, or educational research must be reviewed and approved in accordance with the University and School’s policies and procedures. Please review list below and check all that apply to your proposal.
    • Does the project involve animals?
    • Does the project involve human subjects?
    • Does the project involve hazardous materials?
  • Conflict of Interest Disclosure: Please review the UNC Conflict of Interest Policy. Do you expect to have any conflicts of interest or commitments that have the potential to directly and significantly affect the University’s interests, compromise objectivity in carrying out University responsibilities, or otherwise compromise the performance of University responsibilities? If yes, please explain in the space provided.