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Centers and Institutes

The College of Engineering has more than 20 centers, institutes, and laboratories. In those facilities, faculty and students participate in comprehensive research that is essential to our local, national, and worldwide communities.

The information below includes links to regulations and guides for centers and institutes and proposal instructions for center memberships.

Center Membership

Follow the annual Center budget approved by the Industrial Advisory Board. The main purpose of collecting membership dues is to support the Center’s research projects (internal and external subcontracts) and also to provide funding for the Center’s admin costs. Distribution for both is processed via the Internal award mechanism in RED by transferring money from the center membership pool [SPS: PAM-PXX-XXXXXX/Project ID: 5xxxxx) called “source project” into an appropriate target project, while funding for external subs is done via initiating ePAR to issue a subcontract.

COE Request for Internal Funds Distribution (RIFD): Related to COE Centers and Consortiums ONLY

The Proposal for each Internal or “Core” project of the Center performed at NC State must be entered in PINS and identified as the Center Core project at the end of the project’s title. When the proposal is selected for funding, the Center Director will notify the COE-ORA asking to proceed with the request for Internal funds distribution. The request needs to have an IAB funding decision in writing uploaded as a backup. The internal request comes to SPARCS, and we complete the award transaction.

In-kind membership should be approved by the Industrial Advisory Board in advance. A potential in-kind member needs to present a formal letter describing what kind of contribution, beneficial to the whole membership, it will provide and indicating the equivalent of contribution in dollars. In-kind membership can be approved for one year at a time. Proposal for such membership will show just $1 and should indicate in the title that it is a Full (or Associate) “in-kind” member.

Marketing allocations are subject to the Industrial Advisory Board’s approval. Funds for marketing are transferred by the Office of Contracts and Grants (C&G) from Center’s membership pool account into ledger 7 (unrestricted) account provided by Center Director. If you don’t have one already, you may need to apply for it via the COE-ORA to the budget office. Allocations for marketing are usually made once a year.

Administrative Account funding requires a PINS proposal entitled as follows:

[acronym of center] Administrative Account

Include with the PINS record a budget and justification. The F&A is 0% since it is for administration purposes. No Statement of Work (SOW) is required. The decision to allocate up to XX% of the total annual membership fees for administrative purposes of the Center usually is made by the Industrial Advisory Board (IAB) and a copy of IAB meeting minutes needs to be uploaded into PINS along with the proposal. Once the PINS record has been imported into RADAR, the COE-ORA will initiate a request for internal funds distribution (Internal Award) from membership pool into Administrative Account. SPARCS will process the request and forward to C&G where they will establish a separate five ledger account for the admin costs. Additional funding usually done annually will require a supplemental PINS proposal.

If there are residual funds in the membership pool account, it usually is extended for one year to allow the use of the remaining funds for the ongoing Center research projects, finalize center business/ensure outstanding billing, etc. It seems logical to support the Core research project with these funds for at least its first year. Funds remaining at the end of the extended year can be moved to a ledger 7 and used to fund the project beyond the extended year. A PMR will need to be initiated for this action.

Transfer of funds from membership dues into IPPF does not require a Proposal. This is not a Sponsored research project. Center just needs to email C&G Centers Fiscal Manager (FM CODE: S, V) a request to perform this transfer once a year. The Fiscal Manager will do the transaction moving funds into an account designated by OTT.

Uploading a Membership in PINS

The Center/Department is responsible for uploading all required documents in PINS including:

  • A current and completed copy of the standard membership agreement. The agreement should reference the company’s name (i.e., IBM, DuPont, etc.), address and membership type (full member or associate member).
  • A copy of the Center’s By-Laws.
  • NC State’s documentation concerning the reduced F&A rate of 10.0% MTDC.

Has the sponsor already agreed to fund this project? This question should always be answered, NO.

Proposal type should be NEW for new members of a Center or RENEWAL for members who already have a current agreement with NC State.

If the action requested is a renewal, and there are no significant changes in the membership agreement (rather than extending the period of membership and/or changing the amount of annual dues) since it was originally signed, the University will issue a short amendment to the agreement which will be prepared by SPARCS. In this case, there is no need to upload the standard membership agreement in PINS.

If, however, the agreement has been revised since original signing, then the Department will need to upload in PINS the revised agreement.

The title in PINS should reference the name of the Center and the level of membership, i.e., “SiSoC Membership, Full Member” or “SiWEDS Membership, Associate Member,” if there are multiple levels of membership (full, associate, etc.) or just “ATEC Membership,” in cases where there is only one level of membership. There is no need to add the name of the Sponsor to the project title.

  • Proposal for industrial membership should read “Membership in XYZ Center (Consortium), Full (or Associate, Affiliate etc.) Member.” Do not include name of the Sponsor in the title.
  • Proposal for Research project funded from membership pool should read “Doing XXX, Center (Consortium) Core Project”.
  • Proposal for Enhancement project supported by additional funding from one of industrial Center members should read “Doing XXX, Center (Consortium) Enhancement project”.
  • For membership proposal, indicate in both fields the correctly spelled name of the company becoming a member, i.e., “XYZ, Inc.” or “ABC Corp.,” not just “XYZ” or “ABC” (check spelling with the Sponsor and on the company’s official website).
  • For XYZ Center Core project (funded from Center membership pool or from NSF grant) indicate “XYZ Center” in both fields.
  • For Center Enhancement Project indicate name of Sponsoring company in both fields.
  • Proposal for Center Membership: Select “Membership” from the drop-down box.
  • Proposal for Core project or for Enhancement project: Select “Research.”

The F&A in PINS should indicate the reduced rate of 10.0% Modified Total Direct Costs (MTDC), and you should select “D-Center Memberships/Projects” and use the PINS code XXCM-14-000-MTDC.

Proposal to NSF for creating a new 1/UCRC (Industry/University Cooperative Research Center) or ERC (Engineering Research Center), both for planning grants and full proposal (New and Renewal), should carry Full overhead and use MTDC as F&A basis.

  • Proposal for Center industrial membership, for Core project and for Enhancement project, should carry reduced ~ F&A rate and use Total Direct Costs (TDC) as F&A basis.
  • Justification for F&A Underrecovery field: Select “D-Center membership project” from the drop-down box.
  • Justification Description field: Select “XXCM-14-000-MTDC” (PDF) (i.e., reference to Centers Management Guide).
  • Proposal for membership: upload standard XYZ Center membership agreement and copy of Center Bylaws.
  • Proposal for in-kind membership: upload standard XYZ Center membership agreement, Center Bylaws, letter from the Sponsor with detailed description of the monetary value of in-kind contribution, copy of
    Center Industrial Advisory Board (IAB) meeting minutes indicating approval vote for granting in-kind membership status.
  • Proposal for Core projects: Upload Statement of Work (SOW), Budget, Budget justification, copy of Center IAB meeting minutes indicating approval for funding from the membership pool.
  • Proposal for Enhancement Projects: Upload SOW, Budget, Budget justification, copy of a standard Enhancement Project Agreement.

The budget and budget justification is not a required document for these types of proposals, therefore, not applicable.

The PINS record should include an updated valid sponsor’s contact information including name, address, telephone number and email. SPARCS needs this information, which is provided by the Department, for mailing of the partially executed membership agreement document to the company. SPARCS preference is to send documentation electronically since we are going paperless.  If this option for some serious reason is not acceptable to the sponsor, please indicate so under comments.

In very rare cases, when the Center Director considers it more appropriate to do so, the Department may send and/or hand-deliver the agreement to the company sponsor. If the Center Director elects to deliver the agreement to the sponsor and wishes to include a Cover Letter, then this Cover Letter should be uploaded in PINS as well.  This exception method of sending an agreement should be noted in the PINS comments section.

Period of Performance should normally be entered in PINS based on expectation that sponsor’s intention is to remain a member for three (3) years, in accordance with the terms and conditions of NC State standard Center membership agreement. Please note, this is not a firm commitment on sponsor’s part, and a member may not agree upfront to pay for membership for 3 years. A member has the option for early termination if they so desire.

The Basic Membership Year is based on a calendar year, January 01 through December 31, or fiscal year, July 01 through June 30, as may be the case for a particular Center. This is determined when the Center is established and is not subject to change unless there are special circumstances and approvals in advance. If a company joins after January 01 or Jul 01, depending on the membership year of a particular Center, then the membership dues are prorated as well as the agreement dates.

For example, Period of Performance (PoP) would be January 01, 2011 through December 2013 or July 01, 2010 through June 30, 2013.

If Center’s basic year is calendar and company is joining on May 1, 2010, the PoP will be 05/01/2010 through 12/31/2013 and the total membership amount in PINS would be calculated as follows considering that annual dues are $25K:

If Center’s basic year is fiscal and company is joining on May 01, 2010, the PoP would be 05/01/2010 through 06/30/2013 and the total amount in PINS would be calculated in the following manner:

Start date should not be different than the 1st of the month.

This is represented by a brief summary of the Center’s mission and how it is related to cooperation with the industry partner.

This form must be completed and included in PINS for core and enhancement center projects, as well as, center subcontractors.

To help ensure that NC State faculty understand their responsibilities as recipients of industrial research funding, a new PI Acknowledgement Form (approved by OGC and SPARCS, and is now a required component of PINS submissions) has been prepared by Office of Technology Commercialization and New Ventures (OTCNV) that is tailored to the specific needs of membership Centers and Institutes as well as industrial consortia.

  • Please insert the name of your unit in all highlighted areas of the Form and save it as a template for use with projects funded by your Center, Institute or consortium.
  • The Form should be included with your Center/Institute/consortium RFP on the project calls for funding by industry membership dues (internal and external).
  • The Acknowledgement Form must be signed by the PI of each Core project at NC State approved for funding by your membership IAB, and uploaded to PINS with each proposal.
  • Signed Form is required as a component of the PINS record for each Enhancement project funded by an industry member of your Center, Institute or consortium.
  • The Form must be signed by the PI of each external project selected for funding and uploaded with each PMR request for provision of an external sub-award.

This requirement is applicable to all new and supplemental proposals (as described above) with the start date on or after July 1, 2018.

  • REG 10.10.04 – Centers and Institutes: this regulation is specifically intended to facilitate the establishment and operation of appropriate NC State Centers and Institutes, to prevent the creation of units that unnecessarily duplicate the mission and programs of existing units, and to give NC State administrators responsibility in their management.
  • Management Guide for Consortium: this guide provides instructions for the creation and management of NC State University Centers and Institutes.
  • Management Guide for Centers and Institutes: This guide is specifically intended to provide practical detailed instructions for the creation and management of NC State University Centers and Institutes (hereinafter referred to as “CI”) described in the Regulation 10.10.04 dated January 9, 2007 (hereinafter referred to as “Regulation”).
  • UNC-GA Regulation 400.5: 400.5[R] – Regulation on Planning, Establishing, and Reviewing Centers and Institutes in the University of North Carolina