Pilot Project Applications, Cancer Prevention and Control

Issue Date:  May 25, 2023.
Deadline: Letter of Intent due June 30, 2023.


HOPE & CAIRHE 2gether (HC2), funded by the National Cancer Institute’s Cancer Control Research in Persistent Poverty Areas Initiative, is a cross-institutional center for cancer prevention research. The long-term goal of HC2 is to increase the reach of evidence-based cancer prevention and control interventions in areas and populations characterized by persistent poverty. HC2 brings together the expertise, infrastructure, partnerships, and resources of the Center for Health Outcomes and Population Equity (HOPE), Huntsman Cancer Institute (HCI), and University of Utah, with the Center for American Indian and Rural Health Equity (CAIRHE) and Montana State University. Successful projects will broadly focus on cancer prevention and control in persistent poverty census tract areas.

Examples of successful projects may include but are not limited to:

  • Issues related to cancer survivorship (e.g., mental health, social support, caregiving);
  • Improving cancer screening rates and guidelines;
  • Health behaviors linked to cancer, such as sexual risk taking, alcohol/tobacco use, diet/exercise, and sun exposure;
  • Development of interventions for primary, secondary, or tertiary cancer prevention;
  • Basic science projects relevant to cancer detection, prevention, or control.

Although special attention will be given to projects that address HC2 foci (social determinants of health, lung cancer prevention, obesity prevention, and community-engaged dissemination and implementation strategies for cancer prevention), applications in all areas of cancer prevention and control research will be considered. These projects will result in a community of new and established researchers poised to secure independent funding to significantly impact cancer-related health inequities in persistent poverty areas across the Mountain West and beyond.

Projects will be 1-2 years in duration with total budgets up to $100,000 in direct costs. We encourage applications of various sizes (e.g., $25K, $50K, up to $100K) and expect to be funding 3-5 projects for a total of $225K/year.

Applicants will be allowed to apply for additional pilot awards in future cycles after they have completed their current pilot award from HC2.

To view the complete RFA, go to https://ctsi.utah.edu/documents/hc2-pilot-project-awards-rfa

Letters of Intent should be submitted in PDF format no later than 5 pm MDT, June 30, 2023, via email to Dr. Cho Lam, [email protected]. Late applications will not be accepted. MSU faculty with questions may contact Dr. Monica Skewes, MSU Department of Psychology, at [email protected]



CAIRHE Pilot Projects

RFP No.: CAIRHE-04-2024
Issue Date:
Early November 2023. Check back for more information.
Deadline:April 2024


The deadline for CAIRHE's 2023 Request for Proposals was April 3, 2023. Projects have been selected for funding during the 2023-24 project year (through August 31, 2024).

CAIRHE's 2024 RFP (to be issued in early November 2023) will award funding to selected pilot projects for one grant year (September 1, 2024, through August 31, 2025, contingent on renewed NIH funding for CAIRHE) with the possibility of competitive renewal in the subsequent year. 

CAIRHE requests annual proposals for Pilot Projects that address CAIRHE’s mission of reducing health disparities in Native and rural communities in Montana. Faculty applicants may develop projects within a single discipline (e.g., social sciences), but CAIRHE also encourages collaborative projects between biomedical and social and behavioral health investigators. As in all CAIRHE-funded research, projects should have a high likelihood of leading to independent funding from external (non-MSU) sponsors, such as the National Institutes of Health or the National Science Foundation. 

The Center may hold informational meetings in Fall 2023 to answer questions and provide information about CAIRHE and its mission. At any time, please also contact James Burroughs for more information at [email protected] or 406-994-4407.


Based at Montana State University, CAIRHE is an official state of Montana research center designated by the Montana University System Board of Regents. CAIRHE is supported by an Institutional Development Award (IDeA)—specifically, a Centers of Biomedical Research Excellence (COBRE) grant—from the National Institute of General Medical Sciences of the National Institutes of Health (grant number P20GM104417). For more information, see http://www.montana.edu/cairhe/about/


Principal investigator applicants must hold a faculty appointment at Montana State University.

One of the main objectives of the COBRE grant program is to enhance the ability of new investigators to compete independently for an NIH individual research grant or other major external peer-reviewed support. For this reason, projects funded by CAIRHE’s NIH grant must involve new investigators, defined as either (1) an individual who does not have and has not previously had an external, peer-reviewed major research project grant or program project grant from either a federal or non-federal source that names that investigator as the PI; or (2) an established investigator who is making a significant change to her/his research career. Most faculty in category 1 are new and early stage investigators. For NIH definitions, see http://grants.nih.gov/policy/new_investigators/index.htm#definition.

All applications should have a strong potential to lead to external (non-MSU) funding.

Faculty in the biomedical and social/behavioral sciences are encouraged to apply. (Please note that salary support for collaborative projects may be limited by overall budget limits.) Due to restrictions imposed by the NIH, faculty who are currently funded as an investigator by another IDeA program are not eligible for CAIRHE funding. This includes project leaders for Montana INBRE. Please contact CAIRHE if you have questions about this rule.

Application Types

For 2024-25, CAIRHE will accept applications for Pilot Research Projects.

Pilot Research Projects

Funded at approximately $40,000 to $50,000 in direct costs per year, pilot research projects are designed for faculty who do not currently have a CAIRHE grant and do not currently have significant preliminary data or fully established community partnerships. (However, having preliminary data and/or community partnerships in place at the time of the application would be considered an advantage.) We require that applicants consult with CAIRHE Director Alex Adams or Program Coordinator James Burroughs about community engagement plans before making new contacts. They will then arrange a consultation with the Montana IDeA Community Engagement Core at MSU. This rule is designed to ensure your success and safeguard preexisting MSU relationships in those communities.

New pilot research projects may be competitively renewed for a second and final year.

Proposal Requirements

Complete instructions for Pilot Research Project applications will be posted in early November 2023.