STEP: Technical enrichment program for staff scientists and staff clinicians to acquire expertise in new technologies.

All STEP applications for funding in this fiscal year need to be submitted by May 15th, 2019 to enable funding decisions.

In addition, due to an overwhelming response from the CCR SSSC community, we are currently not accepting any additional STEP LOIs that involve training in single cell RNASeq analysis.  We will re-open this process closer to the next fiscal year (October, 2019). However, if you are interested in pursuing scRNASeq as part of a STEP application in the next round, we strongly encourage you to take some of the introductory programming courses. Information on these introductory courses and additional training opportunities is available on the CCR Bioinformatics Training and Education Program (BTEP) website. You can also contact NCI Bioinformatics Training ( for further guidance on how to get started.

SSSC Technical Enrichment Program (STEP) was established to provide staff scientists and staff clinicians an opportunity to compete for funding to gain access to comprehensive training in state-of-the-art techniques available through CCR Cores and Facilities.  The intent is for the staff scientist/staff clinician (SSSC) to work closely with core managers/heads to learn an application from experimental design, through sample preparation and data analysis.  As part of STEP, the SSSC will spend time in one or more of the CCR Cores/Facilities working on a project which is part of the SSSC’s PI lab and requires the expertise present in the Core/Facility. The SSSC may spend a continuous period of time in the Core or work part-time over an extended period of time.  At the conclusion of their training, this work should not only advance the SSSC’s current research resulting in publication but also provide expertise to benefit future research of the Lab/Branch.

Below are instructions for submitting the application for a project proposal.  Once the application has been accepted, the proposal will be evaluated based on the scientific impact of the proposed work, the need for the proposed technology, and that the training plan aligns with the research goals of the lab and the professional development goals of the SSSC.

Application Process:

1.  A letter of Intent (LOI) download here needs to be completed and submitted to Cynthia Masison, Office of Scientific Programs,

2.  Upon approval of the LOI, you will be contacted by a member of the CCR Office of Science Technology Resources (OSTR) who will work with you and the Cores/Facilities to develop a training plan, determine the necessary resources required for the project, and define a proposed timeline for completion.

3.  Full Proposals and a letter of collaboration from participating Cores/Facilities should be submitted through STARS. On the Request Details section of the STARS submission page please indicate this is a STEP Request (see image below).

4.  Applicants will be notified if their proposals are accepted.