In organization and function, the System Sponsored Programs (SSPO) and EPSCoR Office resembles the typical university sponsored programs office that provides pre-award and post-award services for grants and contracts.
The role of the SSPO is to provide facilitation of externally funded research and other scholarly activities and the maintenance of fiscal accountability and regulatory compliance. The SSPO is responsible for all financial actions and required reporting. Specific activities include:
Allocations and reporting of federal, state, and private funds; draw-downs, invoicing, and payments; maintenance of time and effort reporting records; and the preparation and monitoring of sub-awards/sub-grantees.
Due to its organizational role and the types of grant programs it administers, the SSPO goes beyond the traditional functional model and provides the services and direct program assistance normally attributed to project and departmental administrators in large research universities. The SSPO’s mission is to provide cradle-to-grave support for EPSCoR and other major programs that involve NSHE-wide coordination and distribution of funds. This support includes:
- Proposal development and submission
- Grant and contract negotiation
- Grant and research administration-related trainings
- Account set-up for awards to include sub-awards to NSHE institutions and to universities in other states
- Account management
- Preparation, receipt, review, and allocation of intra-system solicitations
- Planning and coordination of outreach activities
- Coordination and submission of technical reports
- Financial reporting
- Resolution of ad hoc issues and/or requests