Programs and Funding

Career Development Workshop

Please join us virtually July 11-12th! Please take a look at our 2023 agenda and register here.

Are you a graduate student, postdoc, or junior faculty? Applying for a grant within the next year? This workshop is for you!

The purpose of GMaP is to strengthen our regional network by supporting the next generation of cancer and cancer health disparities researchers. We offer a variety of programs and funding to help students and scientists develop the skills they need to tackle a broad range of cancer and cancer health disparities research. All are welcome to join us to hear tips and tricks for putting together a competitive grant application, as well as to listen to experiences and advice from successful independent researchers and CURE Awardees. Presenters will include NIH funded trainees and investigators and NCI Program Officers on topics including: specific aim development, NIH biosketches, how to choose a funding mechanism, responding to NIH critiques, putting together competitive F, K, R series NCI applications, and other career planning related sessions.

As GMaP is a program supported by NCI, we are especially interested in promoting CURE funding mechanisms. 

Fred Hutch campus


Research Stimulus Awards

The purpose of the GMaP Region 5 Research Stimulus Awards is to support a range of cancer research activities. Applications are strongly encouraged from cancer investigators who are underrepresented in the biomedical sciences according to NIH guidelines for underrepresented populations or cancer disparities researchers (graduate students through junior faculty). 

How to apply


This opportunity is open to graduate students, Ph.D. candidates, post-docs or early stage investigators at an institution within GMaP Region 5.

To be considered, you must complete a GMaP Research Stimulus Award application.

Funding is available up to $1,500. 

Applications will be reviewed by GMaP leadership. Because this is a highly competitive award, please allow a minimum of two weeks for application review. 

You’re required complete a one page summary report regarding your experience (i.e data collection, grant development, meeting, conference connections, professional development and training) with the activity/event.

Pilot Funding

GMaP identifies successful strategies to bring important scientific advances to diverse communities. We also increase competitiveness of our trainees for future research funding opportunities. Through pilot funding awards, prospective applicants can demonstrate their ability to carry out sustainable future research projects. Our goal is to boost GMaP trainees from pilot funding to NIH funding mechanisms, specifically in the realm of cancer health disparities.



Pilot funding awards are available to post-doctoral students or early stage investigators with an existing mentor in their field of study.

Applicants cannot be the recipients of an NIH independent research grant; however, they may be working toward an NIH funding mechanism to advance the science of cancer health disparity research. 

Submit an Application


Download the application form. Submit a PDF of your completed form with an NIH biosketch OR a resume to Sara Cole


GMaP Region 5 Fact Sheet

The purpose of GMaP programming is to strengthen our regional network by supporting the next generation of cancer and cancer health disparities researchers. We offer a variety of programs and funding to help students and scientists develop the skills they need to tackle a broad range of cancer and cancer health disparities research.

Below you find find additional information about the activities we offer.


GMaP Webinar Series

The inaugural GMaP Region 5 Webinar series features Drs Hala Madanat (San Diego State University) and Elena Martinez (University of California, San Diego) of NCIs Partnership for the Advancement of Health Equity (PACHE). Learn about the SDSU/UCSD Cancer Partnership and its role in advancing cancer health equity through excellence in cancer research, cancer education, and community engagement in San Diego and Imperial Counties.

View recording here.

Building Diverse Mentoring Networks-featuring Dr. Tina Termini and Dr. Michelle Martínez-Montemayor, both co-authors of the recent paper "Building Diverse Mentoring Networks that Transcend Boundaries in Cancer Research," published in Trends in Cancer. Mentoring networks can reinforce scientific identity and help minority scientists overcome unique challenges to achieve their goals in cancer research. Speakers will share their experiences and how scientists at all career stages can benefit from building diverse mentoring networks that transcend boundaries and promote inclusion.

View recording here.

Mentorship Program: Expert Grant Review

Region 5 is home to numerous seasoned cancer health disparities researchers with a wealth of experience in writing and conducting grants. Feedback from these experts can be invaluable to early stage and new investigators submitting a competitive grant application. We encourage all those interested in having their career development proposals reviewed by a senior investigator to submit the required documents.

You can download a PDF of the following mentorship program review guidelines. For additional questions or to begin the mentorship process, please email Sara Cole or call (206) 667-2150.

To apply for review, investigators must meet all of the following criteria:

  • New or early stage investigator at an institution in GMaP Region 5
    • New investigators are those who have not yet successfully competed for a substantial NIH independent research award
    • Early stage investigators are those within 10 years of completing their terminal research degree or medical residency (or equivalent)
  • Applying for one of the following grant mechanisms: K01/K02/K07/K08/K23/K24/K25/K99 or R01/R03/R15/R21/R34
  • Addressing a relevant cancer health disparity problem within Region 5
  • Ready to submit a final draft of the application (except budget), including biosketches and an abstract to be circulated to potential reviewers

Review Process


Eligible applicants can contact Sara Cole to submit an abstract and specific aims with a request to participate in the program. From there:

  1. Sara Cole will review the submitted documents and circulate them to the GMaP coordinating committee to identify individuals who have expertise in the specific research area.
  2. Once a reviewer is determined, both parties will sign a confidentiality agreement to ensure that the applicant’s intellectual property is protected.
  3. The applicant will submit a final draft of their application and the reviewer will have 3 weeks to provide written feedback.
  4. The applicant and reviewer will have a conference call to discuss feedback and provide any clarification necessary.
  5. Upon completion, the applicant and reviewer will both be asked to complete a short evaluation of the mentorship program.



Applicants should expect the review process to take up to 6 weeks.

We recommend applicants allow at least two weeks between receiving feedback from the reviewer and the submission deadline for the funding agency, in order to have ample time to carefully address the reviewer’s comments.

CURE Program Information and Resources



The Center to Reduce Cancer Health Disparities (CRCHD) Continuing Umbrella Research Experience (CURE) program offers unique training and career development opportunities to enhance and increase diversity in the cancer and cancer health disparities workforce. The CURE program identifies promising candidates from high school through junior investigator levels, and provides them with a continuum of competitive funding opportunities.

  • At each level of the educational process, CURE provides substantive career building experiences to investigators, including role models who can bridge the gap between cultural perspectives and demonstrate success.
  • Career development workshops bring trainees together to discuss mutual problems, develop potential solutions and promote networking.
  • Program staff members serve as career navigator for their trainees, helping them understand NIH grant mechanisms and processes, assisting them in evaluating when they are ready to move to the next level of training or career development, and providing suggestions on how to strengthen their technical and research skills.
  • In professional development workshops trainees learn grant-writing techniques, and participate in peer-review sessions, during which they learn how to improve their own grant applications through evaluating the strengths and weaknesses of other applications.
  • CURE ensures protected time (the trainee has time that can be devoted strictly to research).
  • Consistent monitoring and evaluation keep the program flexible and creative, so it can evolve where needed.

Learn more about the CURE Program:

National Cancer Institute's CURE page
CURE Infographic
The CURE Paradigm: Enhancing Workforce Diversity



The iCURE program provides opportunities in the NCI Intramural Research Program (IRP), including the Center for Cancer Research (CCR) and the Division of Cancer Epidemiology and Genetics (DCEG).

The iCURE program offers:

  • One-year research experience awards for post-baccalaureate (including post-master’s) individuals
  • Two-year research experience awards for graduate students
  • Three-year research experience awards for postdoctoral fellows (with less than five years of relevant research experience)

iCURE scholars receive the following professional support:

  • Working closely with world-class biomedical research scientists in the NCI IRP
  • Support from NCI program staff and information and resources on intramural and extramural funding opportunities
  • Professional development activities, such as workshops, webinars and networking events
  • An extensive mentoring network

Learn more about the iCURE Program:

National Cancer Institute’s iCURE page
iCURE fact sheet

You can send questions about the program or application process to