August 7, 2018

TriCEM Funding

Fall 2022 Call for Graduate Student Award Proposals, Seed Grants in Cancer & Evolution

Submission Deadline: October 14, 2022


TriCEM is now accepting proposals to support research on evolutionary perspectives on human, animal, and plant health. In this round of funding, we are soliciting applications from graduate students at Duke in any area of evolutionary medicine research, and proposals from interdisciplinary teams at Duke and UNC-Chapel Hill in cancer and evolution.

Seed Grants provide one year of funding to initiate new research among interdisciplinary groups of faculty, staff, and postdoctoral scholars. For this cycle, proposed research must be on cancer and evolution, with a clear interdisciplinary focus that explores cancer biology or treatment through an evolutionary lens and connects evolution and ecology with clinical goals and priorities. To be eligible, PIs must be faculty from Duke and/or UNC-Chapel Hill. Proposals should involve multiple PIs/participants that span multiple universities and/or different schools/colleges at a single university. Collaborations between researchers at Duke and UNC-Chapel Hill are particularly encouraged for this call. Award amounts are available up to $20,000. Funds can be used for lab expenses, staff, field research, and other direct research expenses that would position the teams for external funding or publications.

Graduate Student Awards are one-year awards for graduate students to pursue research in evolutionary medicine, broadly interpreted to involve research that uses evolutionary and ecological perspectives to understand health and disease in humans, animals, and plants (previously funded projects can be found at To be eligible, a student must be enrolled at Duke and have completed one semester of their graduate program by the time the funding commences. We expect the graduate student to lead and author aspects of the proposed research under the mentorship of their advisor. Awards will include the opportunity for additional funds to support an undergraduate research assistant on the project. To use these additional funds, we expect that the graduate student will participate in training on effective mentoring and play an active role in mentoring the undergraduate. Award amounts are available up to $7,500. Funds should be used for direct research expenses; tuition, fees, and stipends are not allowable expenses. Details on accessing the additional undergraduate student funds will be made available to successful awardees. These funds do not need to be accounted for in the Graduate Student Award proposal budget.

All proposals are due on Friday, October 14, 2022 and should follow the guidelines below. For general questions, including questions about eligibility or proposal requirements, please contact Dr. Meredith Spence Beaulieu ( Proposals will be evaluated in terms of both the scientific value of the project and the qualifications of the applicant. Note that TriCEM funds do not cover indirect costs or Facilities and Administrative (F&A) Costs.


Proposal Guidelines

Proposals are short, not to exceed 3 single-spaced (12-pt type) pages, and include a brief budget justification and references. References can be in an abbreviated format (e.g., Science or Nature style). In addition to the 3 page proposal, please include the current CV for the investigators (for Graduate Student Awards, only the applicant’s CV is needed; for Seed Grants, CVs should be provided for all PIs/co-PIs). The proposal and CV(s) should be uploaded in a single PDF. Proposals exceeding 3 pages (not including CVs) will be returned without review.

Graduate Student Award proposals must also include a single letter of recommendation from the applicant’s faculty advisor/PI. The letter of recommendation will be submitted separately by the faculty advisor, but must also be received by the proposal deadline of October 14, 2022. Faculty letters of recommendation should be emailed to Meredith Spence Beaulieu at in PDF format by the applicant’s advisor/PI.

Proposals should be organized as follows, all within the 3 page limit:

  1. Program Track (please see our key research areas; note that Graduate Student Award proposals may be in any area, but Seed Grants must be in Cancer & Evolution for this call)
  2. Title (80 characters max)
  3. Short Title (25 characters max)
  4. Name and contact information for investigators (Graduate Student Awards should include this for the applicant and their Advisor/PI; Seed Grants should include this for all PIs/co-PIs)
  5. Project Summary (250 words max)
  6. Public Summary (250 words max) – This should be written for the public and will be visible on the TriCEM website if funded. In most cases, this should be distinct from the project summary and avoid jargon and technical terms.
  7. Introduction and Goals – A statement of the outstanding question in evolutionary science being addressed and a concise review of the concept and the literature to place the project in context.
  8. Proposed Activities – This should include a clear statement of specific outline of hypotheses, predictions, and methods (including planned statistical analyses), as well as any data (include citations or urls) and analytical tools that will be required for the project.
  9. Rationale for TriCEM support – Why can this activity be most effectively conducted through TriCEM? Please explicitly address the proposal’s relevance to evolutionary medicine, both in terms of the evolutionary and ecological perspectives underlying the work and its link to health or disease.
  10. Proposed Timetable – Include start date (month and year) and periods for data collection, analysis, and report writing. For successful fall 2022 applicants, the funding period is expected to be January 15, 2023 through January 15, 2024.
  11. Outcomes – Proposals should include a clear statement about the expected outcomes, including anticipated research products (papers, presentations, etc.).
  12. Budget justification  Proposals must include a brief budget justification with the total amount requested and a simplified breakdown of expenses. For Seed Grants that involve PIs from both Duke and UNC, please indicate a breakdown of expenses by university.
  13. References – Literature cited in the text of the proposal should be included at the end, using the abbreviated reference style of a journal such as Science or Nature. References count toward the page limit, and should be included within the 3 allowable pages. References may be smaller than 12 pt. font, as long as still legible.


Proposal Submission

Proposals will be accepted as a single PDF file, including CV(s), with the exception of Graduate Student Award letters of support submitted as described above. Graphics should be embedded directly into the proposal document. Proposals should be submitted via this form: For submission, please ensure that your document is named in the format “LastName_FirstName.pdf”.