[Federal Register Volume 77, Number 90 (Wednesday, May 9, 2012)]
[Notices]
[Pages 27214-27219]
From the Federal Register Online via the Government Publishing Office [www.gpo.gov]
[FR Doc No: 2012-11252]


=======================================================================
-----------------------------------------------------------------------

DEPARTMENT OF EDUCATION


Applications for New Awards; Ronald E. McNair Postbaccalaureate 
Achievement Program

AGENCY: Office of Postsecondary Education; Department of Education.

ACTION: Notice.

-----------------------------------------------------------------------

Overview Information

    Ronald E. McNair Postbaccalaureate Achievement Program; Notice 
inviting applications for new awards for fiscal year (FY) 2012.

Catalog of Federal Domestic Assistance (CFDA) Number: 84.217A.


DATES: 
    Applications Available: May 9, 2012.
    Deadline for Transmittal of Applications: June 8, 2012.
    Deadline for Intergovernmental Review: August 7, 2012.

Full Text of Announcement

I. Funding Opportunity Description

    Purpose of Program: The Ronald E. McNair Postbaccalaureate 
Achievement Program (McNair Program) is one of the seven programs known 
as the Federal TRIO Programs, which provide postsecondary educational 
support for qualified individuals from disadvantaged backgrounds. The 
McNair Program is a discretionary grant program that awards grants to 
institutions of higher education for projects designed to provide 
disadvantaged college students with effective preparation for doctoral 
study.
    The President has set a clear goal for our education system: By 
2020, the United States will once again lead the world in college 
attainment. The Department views the McNair Program as a critical 
component in the effort to improve the quality of student outcomes so 
that more students are well prepared for college and careers. To more 
strategically align the McNair Program with overarching reform 
strategies for postsecondary completion and graduate school enrollment, 
the Department is announcing three competitive preference priorities 
for this competition.
    Priorities: There are three competitive preference priorities: 
Competitive Preference Priority 1--Promoting Science, Technology, 
Engineering, and Mathematics (STEM) Education; Competitive Preference 
Priority 2--Improving Productivity; and Competitive Preference Priority 
3--Building Evidence of Effectiveness. These three priorities are from 
the Department's notice of final supplemental priorities and 
definitions for discretionary grant programs, published in the Federal 
Register on December 15, 2010 (75 FR 78486), and corrected on May 12, 
2011 (76 FR 27637).
    For FY 2012 and any subsequent year in which we make awards from 
the list of unfunded applicants from this competition, these priorities 
are competitive preference priorities. Under 34 CFR 75.105(c)(2)(i), we 
award up to an additional six points to an application that meets 
Competitive Preference Priority 1, up to an additional four points to 
an application that meets Competitive Preference Priority 2, and up to 
an additional four points to an application that meets Competitive 
Preference Priority 3, depending on how well the application meets 
these priorities. The maximum competitive preference points an 
application can receive under this competition is 12.

    Note: Applicants must include in the one-page abstract submitted 
with the application a statement indicating which competitive 
preference priorities they have addressed. The priorities addressed 
in the application must also be listed on the McNair Program Profile 
Sheet.

    These priorities are:

Competitive Preference Priority 1--Promoting Science, Technology, 
Engineering, and Mathematics (STEM) Education (Up to 6 Additional 
Points)

Background
    The inclusion of Competitive Preference Priority 1 will encourage 
applicants to increase the number of individuals in the McNair 
Program's target population that have access to rigorous STEM programs 
at the postsecondary level and are prepared for graduate study and 
careers in STEM. The McNair Program's target population includes groups 
underrepresented in graduate education, as defined in the McNair 
Program regulations; low-income individuals who are first generation 
college students; and groups underrepresented in STEM as documented by 
standard statistical references or other national survey data submitted 
to and accepted by the Secretary.
    Data from the National Center for Education Statistics show that 35 
percent of all academic programs offered at McNair grantee institutions 
are in the STEM fields, compared to just 32 percent of academic 
programs offered nationally at 4-year institutions. Additionally, 99 
percent of McNair grantee institutions offer at least one academic 
program in the STEM fields. The Department believes that McNair 
projects are positioned to promote and increase the number of students 
in the STEM fields.
    Definition: This definition is from the McNair Program regulations, 
34 CFR 647.7(b), and applies to Competitive Preference Priority 1.
    ``Groups underrepresented in graduate education'' means Black (non-
Hispanic), Hispanic, American Indian, Alaskan Native (as defined in 
section 7306 of the Elementary and Secondary Education Act of 1965, as 
amended (ESEA)), Native Hawaiians (as defined in section 7207 of the 
ESEA), and Native

[[Page 27215]]

American Pacific Islanders (as defined in section 320 of the Higher 
Education Act of 1965, as amended).
Priority
    Projects that are designed to address one or more of the following 
priority areas:
    (a) Providing students with increased access to rigorous and 
engaging coursework in STEM. (2 points)
    (b) Increasing the number and proportion of students prepared for 
postsecondary or graduate study and careers in STEM. (2 points)
    (c) Increasing the number of individuals from groups traditionally 
underrepresented in STEM, including minorities, individuals with 
disabilities, and women, who are provided with access to rigorous and 
engaging coursework in STEM or who are prepared for postsecondary or 
graduate study and careers in STEM. (2 points)

    Note: Applicants addressing this priority might want to describe 
the percentage of students they are proposing to serve that would be 
in the STEM fields.

Competitive Preference Priority 2--Improving Productivity (Up to 4 
Additional Points)

Background
    The Department is using Competitive Preference Priority 2 because 
it believes that it is more important than ever to support projects 
that are designed to significantly increase efficiency in the use of 
resources while improving student outcomes. A key performance measure 
for the McNair Program is the efficiency measure-cost per successful 
outcome, where a successful outcome is defined by the number of 
students enrolling and persisting in graduate education. Applicants 
proposing projects designed to decrease their cost per participant 
while improving student outcomes will be more likely to perform well on 
this efficiency measure.
Priority
    Projects that are designed to significantly increase efficiency in 
the use of time, staff, money, or other resources while improving 
student learning or other educational outcomes (i.e., outcome per unit 
of resource). Such projects may include innovative and sustainable uses 
of technology, modification of school schedules and teacher 
compensation systems, use of open educational resources (as defined in 
this notice), or other strategies.

    Note: The types of projects identified above are suggestions for 
ways to improve productivity. The Department recognizes that some of 
these examples, such as modification of teacher compensation 
systems, may not be relevant for the context of this notice. 
Accordingly, grantees might want to consider responding to this 
notice in a way that improves productivity in a relevant, higher 
education context. Other strategies for improving productivity could 
include modification of the summer research experience, methods of 
supplementing grant funds with other funds, and employing graduate 
mentors versus faculty mentors during the first year of research.


    Note: Although not required, the Secretary encourages applicants 
addressing this priority to explain how they will serve the same or 
an increased number of students at a lower cost per participant. The 
Department is interested in seeing strong plans that propose to 
serve an increasing number of students at a lower cost per 
participant.

Competitive Preference Priority 3--Building Evidence of Effectiveness 
(Up to 4 Additional Points)

    Background: The McNair Program is an important investment aimed at 
increasing the number of low-income, first generation students that 
complete undergraduate education and enter and complete graduate 
school. But this investment is insufficient to provide these services 
to all students who would benefit from the program. Accordingly, the 
Department is interested in projects that propose ways to increase the 
evidence base around strategies or activities that may help students 
from low-income and first-generation backgrounds complete undergraduate 
education and enter and complete graduate programs, particularly in the 
STEM fields.
    Priority: Projects that propose evaluation plans that are likely to 
produce valid and reliable evidence in the following priority area:
    Identifying and improving practices, strategies, and policies that 
may contribute to improving outcomes. Under this priority, at a 
minimum, the outcome of interest is to be measured multiple times 
before and after the treatment for project participants and, where 
feasible, for a comparison group of non-participants.

    Note: Applicants addressing this priority might want to consider 
how their plans for evaluation would be able to provide more 
information about what practices, strategies, and policies may help 
more low-income, first-generation students complete undergraduate 
education in STEM fields and enter and complete graduate programs in 
the STEM fields.


    Note: To help build evidence of effectiveness, applicants might 
want to consider tracking outcomes and results for a group of 
students not served by the McNair Program in order to establish a 
comparison group. This would enable McNair projects to better 
measure the success of students selected for participation in their 
projects.

    Definition: This definition is from the notice of final 
supplemental priorities and definitions, published in the Federal 
Register on December 15, 2010 (75 FR 78486), and corrected on May 12, 
2011 (76 FR 27637), and applies to Competitive Preference Priority 2.
    ``Open educational resources (OER)'' means teaching, learning, and 
research resources that reside in the public domain or have been 
released under an intellectual property license that permits their free 
use or repurposing by others.

    Program Authority: 20 U.S.C. 1070a-11 and 20 U.S.C. 1070a-15.

    Applicable Regulations: (a) The Education Department General 
Administrative Regulations (EDGAR) in 34 CFR parts 74, 75 (except for 
75.215 through 75.221), 77, 79, 80, 82, 84, 86, 97, 98 and 99. (b) The 
Education Department suspension and debarment regulations in 2 CFR part 
3485. (c) The regulations for this program in 34 CFR part 647. (d) The 
notice of final supplemental priorities and definitions for 
discretionary grant programs, published in the Federal Register on 
December 15, 2010 (75 FR 78486), and corrected on May 12, 2011 (76 FR 
27637).

    Note:  The regulations in 34 CFR part 79 apply to all applicants 
except federally recognized Indian tribes.


    Note: The regulations in 34 CFR part 86 apply to institutions of 
higher education (IHEs) only.

II. Award Information

    Type of Award: Discretionary grants.
    Estimated Available Funds: $30,588,259.
    Contingent upon the availability of funds and the quality of 
applications, we may make additional awards in FY 2013 from the list of 
unfunded applicants from this competition.
    Estimated Range of Awards: $220,000 to $368,000.
    Estimated Average Size of Awards: $240,852.

Maximum Award

    For an applicant not currently receiving a McNair Program grant: 
$220,000 to serve a minimum of 25 eligible participants.
    For an applicant currently receiving a McNair Program grant but 
applying to serve a different campus: $220,000 to serve a minimum of 25 
eligible participants.
    For an applicant currently receiving a McNair Program grant and not 
applying

[[Page 27216]]

to serve a different campus, the maximum award is the amount equal to 
the applicant's grant award amount for FY 2007, the first year of the 
previous cycle, to continue to serve at least the same number of 
participants that was approved for the current project to the extent 
that continued service to the same number of participants does not 
result in a per participant cost of more than $8,800.

    Note: For an applicant who is currently receiving a McNair 
Program grant and is serving more than 25 participants, the 
applicant is encouraged to continue to serve its current number of 
participants. However, if the applicant proposes to reduce the 
number of participants to be served, the applicant must propose to 
serve at least 25 participants at a cost that does not exceed $8,800 
per participant.

    For any project that proposes to serve less than the minimum number 
of 25 participants, the maximum award amount that may be requested is 
an amount equal to $8,800 per participant.
    Pursuant to 34 CFR 647.32(a), we will reject any application that 
proposes a budget exceeding the maximum amount described in this 
section for a single budget period of 12 months to serve fewer than 25 
participants. Pursuant to 34 CFR 647.32(a), we will also reject any 
application that proposes a budget to serve fewer than 25 participants.
    Estimated Number of Awards: 127.

    Note: The Department is not bound by any estimates in this 
notice.

    Project Period: Up to 60 months.

III. Eligibility Information

    1. Eligible Applicants: Institutions of higher education and 
combinations of those institutions.
    2. Cost Sharing or Matching: This program does not require cost 
sharing or matching.
    3. Other: An applicant may submit more than one application for a 
McNair grant as long as each application describes a project that 
serves a different campus or a designated different population (34 CFR 
647.10(a)). The McNair Program regulations define ``different campus'' 
as ``a site of an institution of higher education that--(1) Is 
geographically apart from the main campus of the institution; (2) Is 
permanent in nature; and (3) Offers courses in educational programs 
leading to a degree, certificate, or other recognized educational 
credential.'' 34 CFR 647.7(b). The Secretary is not designating any 
additional populations for which an applicant may submit a separate 
application under this competition (34 CFR 647.10(b)).

IV. Application and Submission Information

    1. Address to Request Application Package: You can obtain an 
application package via the Internet by downloading the package from 
the program Web site at: http://www2.ed.gov/programs/triomcnair/index.html.
    You can also request a copy of the application package from: Eileen 
Bland, McNair Program, U.S. Department of Education, 1990 K Street NW., 
Room 7000, Washington, DC 20006-8510. Telephone: (202) 502-7600 or by 
email: TRIO@ed.gov.
    If you use a telecommunications device for the deaf (TDD) or a text 
telephone (TTY), call the Federal Relay Service (FRS), toll free, at 1-
800-877-8339.
    Individuals with disabilities can obtain a copy of the application 
package in an accessible format (e.g., braille, large print, audiotape, 
or compact disc) by contacting the program contact person listed in 
this section.
    2. Content and Form of Application Submission:
    Requirements concerning the content of an application, together 
with the forms you must submit, are in the application package for this 
program.
    Page Limit: The application narrative is where you, the applicant, 
address the selection criteria that reviewers use to evaluate your 
application. You must limit the application narrative (Part III) to no 
more than 50 pages. However, any application addressing the competitive 
preference priorities may include up to four additional pages for each 
priority addressed (a total of 12 pages if all three priorities are 
addressed) in a separate section of the application submission to 
discuss how the application meets the competitive preference priority 
or priorities. These additional pages cannot be used for or transferred 
to the project narrative. Partial pages will count as a full page 
toward the page limit. For purpose of determining compliance with the 
page limit, each page on which there are words will be counted as one 
full page. Applicants must use the following standards:
     A ``page'' is 8.5'' x 11'', on one side only, with 1'' 
margins at the top, bottom, and both sides. Page numbers and an 
identifier may be within the 1'' margin.
     Double space (no more than three lines per vertical inch) 
all text in the application narrative, except titles, headings, 
footnotes, quotations, references, captions, and all text in charts, 
tables, figures, and graphs.
     Use a font that is 12 point or larger.
     Use one of the following fonts: Times New Roman, Courier, 
Courier New, or Arial. An application submitted in any other font 
(including Times Roman and Arial Narrow) will not be accepted.
    The page limit does not apply to Part I, the Application for 
Federal Assistance Face Sheet (SF 424); Part II, the budget information 
summary form (ED Form 524); the McNair Program Profile; the one-page 
Project Abstract narrative; and the assurances and certifications. The 
page limit also does not apply to a table of contents. If you include 
any attachments or appendices, these items will be counted as part of 
Part III, the application narrative, for purposes of the page-limit 
requirement. You must include your complete response to the selection 
criteria, which also includes the budget narrative, in Part III, the 
application narrative.
    We will reject your application if you exceed the page limit.
    3. Submission Dates and Times:
    Applications Available: May 9, 2012.
    Deadline for Transmittal of Applications: June 8, 2012.
    Applications for grants under this program must be submitted 
electronically using the Grants.gov Apply site (Grants.gov). For 
information (including dates and times) about how to submit your 
application electronically, or in paper format by mail or hand delivery 
if you qualify for an exception to the electronic submission 
requirement, please refer to section IV. 7. Other Submission 
Requirements of this notice.
    We do not consider an application that does not comply with the 
deadline requirements.
    Individuals with disabilities who need an accommodation or 
auxiliary aid in connection with the application process should contact 
the person listed under For Further Information Contact in section VII 
of this notice. If the Department provides an accommodation or 
auxiliary aid to an individual with a disability in connection with the 
application process, the individual's application remains subject to 
all other requirements and limitations in this notice.
    Deadline for Intergovernmental Review: August 7, 2012.
    4. Intergovernmental Review: This program is subject to Executive 
Order 12372 and the regulations in 34 CFR part 79. Information about 
Intergovernmental Review of Federal Programs under Executive Order 
12372 is in the application package for this program.
    5. Funding Restrictions: We specify unallowable costs in 34 CFR 
647.31. We reference additional regulations

[[Page 27217]]

outlining funding restrictions in the Applicable Regulations section of 
this notice.
    6. Data Universal Numbering System Number, Taxpayer Identification 
Number, and Central Contractor Registry: To do business with the 
Department of Education, you must--
    a. Have a Data Universal Numbering System (DUNS) number and a 
Taxpayer Identification Number (TIN);
    b. Register both your DUNS number and TIN with the Central 
Contractor Registry (CCR), the Government's primary registrant 
database;
    c. Provide your DUNS number and TIN on your application; and
    d. Maintain an active CCR registration with current information 
while your application is under review by the Department and, if you 
are awarded a grant, during the project period.
    You can obtain a DUNS number from Dun and Bradstreet. A DUNS number 
can be created within one business day.
    If you are a corporate entity, agency, institution, or 
organization, you can obtain a TIN from the Internal Revenue Service. 
If you are an individual, you can obtain a TIN from the Internal 
Revenue Service or the Social Security Administration. If you need a 
new TIN, please allow 2-5 weeks for your TIN to become active.
    The CCR registration process may take five or more business days to 
complete. If you are currently registered with the CCR, you may not 
need to make any changes. However, please make certain that the TIN 
associated with your DUNS number is correct. Also note that you will 
need to update your CCR registration on an annual basis. This may take 
three or more business days to complete.
    In addition, if you are submitting your application via Grants.gov, 
you must (1) be designated by your organization as an Authorized 
Organization Representative (AOR); and (2) register yourself with 
Grants.gov as an AOR. Details on these steps are outlined at the 
following Grants.gov Web page: www.grants.gov/applicants/get_registered.jsp.
    7. Other Submission Requirements: Applications for grants under 
this program must be submitted electronically unless you qualify for an 
exception to this requirement in accordance with the instructions in 
this section.

a. Electronic Submission of Applications

    Applications for grants under the McNair Program, CFDA number 
84.217A, must be submitted electronically using the Governmentwide 
Grants.gov Apply site at www.Grants.gov. Through this site, you will be 
able to download a copy of the application package, complete it 
offline, and then upload and submit your application. You may not email 
an electronic copy of a grant application to us.
    We will reject your application if you submit it in paper format 
unless, as described elsewhere in this section, you qualify for one of 
the exceptions to the electronic submission requirement and submit, no 
later than two weeks before the application deadline date, a written 
statement to the Department that you qualify for one of these 
exceptions. Further information regarding calculation of the date that 
is two weeks before the application deadline date is provided later in 
this section under Exception to Electronic Submission Requirement.
    You may access the electronic grant application for the McNair 
Program at www.Grants.gov. You must search for the downloadable 
application package for this program by the CFDA number. Do not include 
the CFDA number's alpha suffix in your search (e.g., search for 84.217, 
not 84.217A).
    Please note the following:
     When you enter the Grants.gov site, you will find 
information about submitting an application electronically through the 
site, as well as the hours of operation.
     Applications received by Grants.gov are date and time 
stamped. Your application must be fully uploaded and submitted and must 
be date and time stamped by the Grants.gov system no later than 4:30:00 
p.m., Washington, DC time, on the application deadline date. Except as 
otherwise noted in this section, we will not accept your application if 
it is received--that is, date and time stamped by the Grants.gov 
system--after 4:30:00 p.m., Washington, DC time, on the application 
deadline date. We do not consider an application that does not comply 
with the deadline requirements. When we retrieve your application from 
Grants.gov, we will notify you if we are rejecting your application 
because it was date and time stamped by the Grants.gov system after 
4:30:00 p.m., Washington, DC time, on the application deadline date.
     The amount of time it can take to upload an application 
will vary depending on a variety of factors, including the size of the 
application and the speed of your Internet connection. Therefore, we 
strongly recommend that you do not wait until the application deadline 
date to begin the submission process through Grants.gov.
     You should review and follow the Education Submission 
Procedures for submitting an application through Grants.gov that are 
included in the application package for this program to ensure that you 
submit your application in a timely manner to the Grants.gov system. 
You can also find the Education Submission Procedures pertaining to 
Grants.gov under News and Events on the Department's G5 system home 
page at http://www.G5.gov.
     You will not receive additional point value because you 
submit your application in electronic format, nor will we penalize you 
if you qualify for an exception to the electronic submission 
requirement, as described elsewhere in this section, and submit your 
application in paper format.
     You must submit all documents electronically, including 
all information you typically provide on the following forms: The 
Application for Federal Assistance (SF 424), the Department of 
Education Supplemental Information for SF 424, Budget Information--Non-
Construction Programs (ED 524), and all necessary assurances and 
certifications.
     You must upload any narrative sections and all other 
attachments to your application as files in a PDF (Portable Document) 
format only. If you upload a file type other than a PDF or submit a 
password-protected file, we will not review that material.
     Your electronic application must comply with any page-
limit requirements described in this notice.
     After you electronically submit your application, you will 
receive from Grants.gov an automatic notification of receipt that 
contains a Grants.gov tracking number. (This notification indicates 
receipt by Grants.gov only, not receipt by the Department.) The 
Department then will retrieve your application from Grants.gov and send 
a second notification to you by email. This second notification 
indicates that the Department has received your application and has 
assigned your application a PR/Award number (an ED-specified 
identifying number unique to your application).
     We may request that you provide us original signatures on 
forms at a later date.
    Application Deadline Date Extension in Case of Technical Issues 
with the Grants.gov System: If you are experiencing problems submitting 
your application through Grants.gov, please contact the Grants.gov 
Support Desk, toll free, at 1-800-518-4726. You must obtain a 
Grants.gov Support Desk Case Number and must keep a record of it.
    If you are prevented from electronically submitting your 
application on the application deadline date because of technical 
problems with

[[Page 27218]]

the Grants.gov system, we will grant you an extension until 4:30:00 
p.m., Washington, DC time, the following business day to enable you to 
transmit your application electronically or by hand delivery. You also 
may mail your application by following the mailing instructions 
described elsewhere in this notice.
    If you submit an application after 4:30:00 p.m., Washington, DC 
time, on the application deadline date, please contact the person 
listed under FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT in section VII of this 
notice and provide an explanation of the technical problem you 
experienced with Grants.gov, along with the Grants.gov Support Desk 
Case Number. We will accept your application if we can confirm that a 
technical problem occurred with the Grants.gov system and that that 
problem affected your ability to submit your application by 4:30:00 
p.m., Washington, DC time, on the application deadline date. The 
Department will contact you after a determination is made on whether 
your application will be accepted.

    Note: The extensions to which we refer in this section apply 
only to the unavailability of, or technical problems with, the 
Grants.gov system. We will not grant you an extension if you failed 
to fully register to submit your application to Grants.gov before 
the application deadline date and time or if the technical problem 
you experienced is unrelated to the Grants.gov system.

    Exception to Electronic Submission Requirement: You qualify for an 
exception to the electronic submission requirement, and may submit your 
application in paper format, if you are unable to submit an application 
through the Grants.gov system because--
     You do not have access to the Internet; or
     You do not have the capacity to upload large documents to 
the Grants.gov system;

and
     No later than two weeks before the application deadline 
date (14 calendar days or, if the fourteenth calendar day before the 
application deadline date falls on a Federal holiday, the next business 
day following the Federal holiday), you mail or fax a written statement 
to the Department, explaining which of the two grounds for an exception 
prevent you from using the Internet to submit your application.
    If you mail your written statement to the Department, it must be 
postmarked no later than two weeks before the application deadline 
date. If you fax your written statement to the Department, we must 
receive the faxed statement no later than two weeks before the 
application deadline date.
    Address and mail or fax your statement to: Eileen Bland, U.S. 
Department of Education, 1990 K Street NW., Room 7000, Washington, DC 
20006-8510. FAX: (202) 502-7857.
    Your paper application must be submitted in accordance with the 
mail or hand delivery instructions described in this notice.

b. Submission of Paper Applications by Mail

    If you qualify for an exception to the electronic submission 
requirement, you may mail (through the U.S. Postal Service or a 
commercial carrier) your application to the Department. You must mail 
the original and three copies of your application, on or before the 
application deadline date, to the Department at the following address: 
U.S. Department of Education, Application Control Center, Attention: 
(CFDA Number 84.217A), LBJ Basement Level 1, 400 Maryland Avenue SW., 
Washington, DC 20202-4260.
    You must show proof of mailing consisting of one of the following:
    (1) A legibly dated U.S. Postal Service postmark.
    (2) A legible mail receipt with the date of mailing stamped by the 
U.S. Postal Service.
    (3) A dated shipping label, invoice, or receipt from a commercial 
carrier.
    (4) Any other proof of mailing acceptable to the Secretary of the 
U.S. Department of Education.
    If you mail your application through the U.S. Postal Service, we do 
not accept either of the following as proof of mailing:
    (1) A private metered postmark.
    (2) A mail receipt that is not dated by the U.S. Postal Service.
    If your application is postmarked after the application deadline 
date, we will not consider your application.

    Note: The U.S. Postal Service does not uniformly provide a dated 
postmark. Before relying on this method, you should check with your 
local post office.

c. Submission of Paper Applications by Hand Delivery

    If you qualify for an exception to the electronic submission 
requirement, you (or a courier service) may deliver your paper 
application to the Department by hand. You must deliver the original 
and two copies of your application by hand, on or before the 
application deadline date, to the Department at the following address: 
U.S. Department of Education, Application Control Center, Attention: 
(CFDA Number 84.217A), 550 12th Street SW., Room 7041, Potomac Center 
Plaza, Washington, DC 20202-4260.
    The Application Control Center accepts hand deliveries daily 
between 8:00 a.m. and 4:30:00 p.m., Washington, DC time, except 
Saturdays, Sundays, and Federal holidays.

    Note for Mail or Hand Delivery of Paper Applications: If you 
mail or hand deliver your application to the Department--
    (1) You must indicate on the envelope and--if not provided by 
the Department--in Item 11 of the SF 424 the CFDA number, including 
suffix letter, if any, of the competition under which you are 
submitting your application; and
    (2) The Application Control Center will mail to you a 
notification of receipt of your grant application. If you do not 
receive this notification within 15 business days from the 
application deadline date, you should call the U.S. Department of 
Education Application Control Center at (202) 245-6288.

V. Application Review Information

    1. Selection Criteria: The selection criteria for this program 
competition are from 34 CFR 647.21 and are listed in the application 
package.
    2. Review and Selection Process: A panel of non-Federal readers 
will review each application in accordance with the selection criteria 
and the competitive preference priorities, pursuant to 34 CFR 647.20. 
The individual scores of the readers will be added and the sum divided 
by the number of readers to determine the reader score received in the 
review process.
    In accordance with 34 CFR 647.22, the Secretary will evaluate the 
prior experience of applicants that received a McNair Program project 
grant for project years 2008-09, 2009-10 and 2010-11. Based on that 
evaluation, the Secretary may add prior experience points to the 
application's averaged reader score to determine the total score for 
each application. The Secretary makes new grants in rank order on the 
basis of the total scores of the reader scores and prior experience 
points awarded to each application.
    Pursuant to 34 CFR 647.20(c), if there are insufficient funds for 
all applications with the same total scores, the Secretary will choose 
among the tied applications so as to serve geographical areas that have 
been underserved by the McNair Program. The Secretary will not make a 
new grant to an applicant if the applicant's prior project involved the 
fraudulent use of program funds.
    In addition, in making a competitive grant award, the Secretary 
also requires various assurances including those applicable to Federal 
civil rights laws that prohibit discrimination in programs or 
activities receiving Federal financial

[[Page 27219]]

assistance from the Department of Education (34 CFR 100.4, 104.5, 
106.4, 108.8, and 110.23).
    3. Special Conditions: Under 34 CFR 74.14 and 80.12, the Secretary 
may impose special conditions on a grant if the applicant or grantee is 
not financially stable; has a history of unsatisfactory performance; 
has a financial or other management system that does not meet the 
standards in 34 CFR parts 74 or 80, as applicable; has not fulfilled 
the conditions of a prior grant; or, is otherwise not responsible.

VI. Award Administration Information

    1. Award Notices: If your application is successful, we notify your 
U.S. Representative and U.S. Senators and send you a Grant Award 
Notification (GAN). We may notify you informally, also.
    If your application is not evaluated or not selected for funding, 
we notify you.
    2. Administrative and National Policy Requirements: We identify 
administrative and national policy requirements in the application 
package and reference these and other requirements in the Applicable 
Regulations section of this notice.
    We reference the regulations outlining the terms and conditions of 
an award in the Applicable Regulations section of this notice and 
include these and other specific conditions in the GAN. The GAN also 
incorporates your approved application as part of your binding 
commitments under the grant.
    3. Reporting: (a) If you apply for a grant under this competition, 
you must ensure that you have in place the necessary processes and 
systems to comply with the reporting requirements in 2 CFR part 170 
should you receive funding under the competition. This does not apply 
if you have an exception under 2 CFR 170.110(b).
    (b) At the end of your project period, you must submit a final 
performance report, including financial information, as directed by the 
Secretary. If you receive a multi-year award, you must submit an annual 
performance report that provides the most current performance and 
financial expenditure information as directed by the Secretary under 34 
CFR 75.118. The Secretary may also require more frequent performance 
reports under 34 CFR 75.720(c). For specific requirements on reporting, 
please go to www.ed.gov/fund/grant/apply/appforms/appforms.html.
    4. Performance Measures: The success of the McNair Program will be 
measured by the McNair Program participants' success in completing 
research and participation in scholarly activities, enrollment in a 
graduate program, continued enrollment in graduate study, and the 
attainment of a doctoral degree. All McNair Program grantees will be 
required to submit an annual performance report.
    5. Continuation Awards: In making a continuation award, the 
Secretary may consider, under 34 CFR 75.253, the extent to which a 
grantee has made ``substantial progress toward meeting the objectives 
in its approved application.'' This consideration includes the review 
of a grantee's progress in meeting the targets and projected outcomes 
in its approved application, and whether the grantee has expended funds 
in a manner that is consistent with its approved application and 
budget. In making a continuation grant, the Secretary also considers 
whether the grantee is operating in compliance with the assurances in 
its approved application, including those applicable to Federal civil 
rights laws that prohibit discrimination in programs or activities 
receiving Federal financial assistance from the Department (34 CFR 
100.4, 104.5, 106.4, 108.8, and 110.23).

VII. Agency Contacts

    For Further Information Contact: Eileen Bland, U.S. Department of 
Education, 1990 K Street NW., Room 7000, Washington, DC 20006-8510. 
Telephone: (202) 502-7600 or by email: TRIO@ed.gov.
    If you use a TDD or a TTY, call the FRS, toll free, at 1-800-877-
8339.

VIII. Other Information

    Accessible Format: Individuals with disabilities can obtain this 
document and a copy of the application package in an accessible format 
(e.g., braille, large print, audiotape, or compact disc) on request to 
one of the program contact persons listed under For Further Information 
Contact in section VII of this notice.
    Electronic Access to This Document: The official version of this 
document is the document published in the Federal Register. Free 
Internet access to the official edition of the Federal Register and the 
Code of Federal Regulations is available via the Federal Digital System 
at: www.gpo.gov/fdsys. At this site you can view this document, as well 
as other documents of this Department published in the Federal 
Register, in text or Adobe Portable Document Format (PDF). To use PDF, 
you must have Adobe Acrobat Reader, which is available free at this 
site.
    You may also access documents of the Department published in the 
Federal Register by using the article search feature at: 
www.federalregister.gov. Specifically, through the advanced search 
feature at this site, you can limit your search to documents published 
by the Department.

    Dated: May 4, 2012.
Eduardo M. Ochoa,
Assistant Secretary for Postsecondary Education.
[FR Doc. 2012-11252 Filed 5-8-12; 8:45 am]
BILLING CODE 4000-01-P