Education and Outreach

Availability for NASA Summer of Innovation (SOI) Competitive Grants Peer Review

By Keith Cowing
January 27, 2011

NOTE: This email is for information gathering purposes. Willingness to participate in the SOI review does not guarantee a proposal will be assigned. The number of available qualified reviewers may exceed the number of reviewers needed.

NASA Research and Education Support Services (NRESS) is seeking persons to evaluate proposals submitted in response to the NASA Cooperative Agreement Notice (CAN) titled, “2011 Summer of Innovation Project” announced by NASA Glenn Research Center Office of Educational Programs on January 19, 2011. Specifically, NASA is interested in reviewers with expertise and experience in one or more of the following areas: education reform and policy, evidence-based summer learning programs, innovative and scalable program design, partnerships, grant management and/or federal education proposal review. NASA is seeking reviewers with various backgrounds and professional affiliation including Pre-K – 12 teachers and principals, college and university educators, researchers and evaluators, social entrepreneurs, strategy consultants, grant makers and managers, and others with education expertise.

The Summer of Innovation is a solicitation-driven project that supports student interest in STEM by strengthening the capacity of community- and school-based organizations that inspire and engage middle school students in STEM content during the summer. SoI then continues to support follow-on and extended learning efforts designed to keep students involved in NASA-themed STEM activities during the academic year.

The project will expand both the breadth and depth of school- and community-based partners’ ability to provide meaningful, educational and exciting STEM experiences to students in grades 4-9 who traditionally have been underrepresented in STEM fields. SoI will leverage NASA funding and content in partnership with proven community- and school-based summer and extended learning organizations to support projects that are seeking to strengthen current STEM education

Detailed information regarding NASA critical research opportunities, proposal requirements and evaluation criteria are contained in the solicitation that can be viewed in NASA’s master proposal data base system, the NASA Solicitation and Proposal Integrated Review and Evaluation System (NSPIRES). To view the solicitation and determine your interest in serving as a Summer of Innovation peer reviewer, please access the solicitation at NSPIRES at, or alternately, you may view it at (

The online review period is scheduled for March 1-March 8, 2011. It is anticipated that reviewers will be asked to review three to five proposals approximately 15 pages in length, plus budget, biographical sketches, and other standard appendices. It is imperative that reviewers agree to strict adherence to the proposal review period. Reviewers are expected to have access to the Internet, a phone, a printer and have the ability to interact with a web-based environment. Non-civil servants will receive an honorarium of $75 for each proposal fully reviewed and submitted online by the close of the review period.

If you determine you would like to be a reviewer, please respond by e-mail to [email protected] by COB February 18, 2011. Be sure to include contact information, resume/vita, and a summary of your expertise and experience in one or more of the following areas: current education reform and policy, summer learning programs, innovative and scalable program design, partnerships, grant management, and/or federal education proposal review.

For consideration as a reviewer, you will be required to register within the NSPIRES system prior to February 18, 2011. If you do not have an account, please follow the instructions on the NSPIRES website (

If you have questions about this process, goals of the NRA, or NASA requirements, please contact:

Summer of Innovation Project Manager
Rob Lasalvia (Acting)
Educational Programs Office
NASA Glenn Research Center
21000 Brookpark Rd MS 7-4
Cleveland, OH 44135
Email: [email protected]

For questions regarding the Conflict Of Interest form, viewing the CAN, or general help with the NSPIRES website and registering as a potential reviewer, please contact:

Solicitation Support Manager
Sam Johnson
NASA Research and Education Support Services (NRESS)
2345 Crystal Drive – Suite 500
Arlington, VA 22202
Telephone: (202) 479-9030, ext. 221
Fax: (202) 479-0511
Email: [email protected]

We hope to receive a response about your interest and willingness to review no later Wednesday, February 18, 2011.

Thank you for considering acting as a peer reviewer for this important effort.

Explorers Club Fellow, ex-NASA Space Station Payload manager/space biologist, Away Teams, Journalist, Lapsed climber, Synaesthete, Na’Vi-Jedi-Freman-Buddhist-mix, ASL, Devon Island and Everest Base Camp veteran, (he/him) 🖖🏻