The Department of Defense (DoD) offers a number of research funding opportunities for early career faculty, with the long-term goal of developing the next generation of academic scientists, engineers and mathematicians in strategic disciplines whose research aligns with agency mission and priorities. For current opportunities, search

To access recordings of our workshops on obtaining DOD funding, visit the Working with DoD webpage.

Note: The following information does not replace the sponsor's actual funding opportunity announcement. Always review the sponsor's full announcement to verify program guidelines, requirements, and deadlines. Search to find current funding opportunity announcement.

DARPA's YFA program aims to identify and engage rising stars in junior research positions in academia and equivalent positions at non-profit research institutions, particularly those without prior DARPA funding, to expose them to Department of Defense (DoD) needs and DARPA’s mission to create and prevent technological surprise. The YFA program will provide high-impact funding to elite researchers early in their careers to develop innovative new research that enables transformative DoD capabilities. Ultimately, the YFA program is developing the next generations of researchers focused on national security issues.

Visit for current guidelines and eligibility requirements.

In August 2021, DARPA held a 2022 YFA Proposers Day - access the recording here.

  • DARPA solicits innovative research proposals in the areas of interest to its six technical offices: Biological Technologies Office (BTO), Defense Sciences Office (DSO), Information Innovation Office (I2O), Microsystems Technology Office (MTO), Strategic Technology Office (STO), and Tactical Technology Office (TTO).
  • DARPA Program Managers are looking for applicants to address the Heilmeier Catechism questions in their proposals.
  • Awards are typically up to $500,000 in a 24-month base period, and an additional 12-month option with a max funding of $500,000.
  • Proposers must current tenure-track Assistant/Associate Professors, or current tenured faculty within 3 years of their tenure date.
  • Participation is open to individuals who are U.S. Citizens, U.S. Permanent Residents, and Foreign Nationals.
  • Estimated annual deadlines: December for Executive Summary. February for full proposals.

The Air Force YIP supports individual early in career scientists and engineers who have received Ph.D. or equivalent degrees within the last seven years (check current solicitation for specific date), showing exceptional ability and promise for conducting basic research. The program objective is to foster creative basic research in science and engineering; enhance early career development of outstanding young investigators; and increase opportunities for the young investigator to recognize the Air Force and Space Force mission and related challenges in science and engineering.

For current information about the AFOSR YIP and eligibility, visit:

  • Most awards are funded up to $150,00 per year for three years, for a total of $450,000.
  • The PI on the proposal must be a U.S. citizen, national, or permanent resident (at time of proposal submission), employed on a full-time basis and hold a permanent position.
  • Estimated annual deadlines: April for White Paper. June for full proposal.

ARO ECP awards are funded by the Army to support early career scientists and engineers who show exceptional ability and promise for conducting basic research. The objective of the ECP Award is to foster creative basic research in science and engineering; enhance development of outstanding early career investigators; and increase opportunities for early career investigators to pursue research in areas relevant to the Army.

  • Proposals are sought for research that supports the ARO research topics identified on the Army Research Laboratory (ARL) Broad Agency Announcement (BAA) topics website at
  • Typical awards are funded up to $120,000 per year for 3 years.
  • Open to U.S. citizens, U.S. Nationals, or Lawful Permanent Residents who have held a tenure-track position at a U.S. institution of higher education for fewer than five years at the time of application.
  • Proposals are accepted anytime while the BAA is open.

ONR's YIP seeks to identify and support academic scientists and engineers who are in their first or second full-time tenure-track or tenure-track-equivalent academic appointment, who have received their PhD or equivalent degree within the last seven years (see the current solicitation for specific date), and who show exceptional promise for doing creative research. The objectives of this program are to attract outstanding faculty members of U.S. Institutions of Higher Education to the Department of the Navy's Science and Technology (S&T) research program, to support their research, and to encourage their teaching and research careers. Individuals who are holding U.S. non-profit equivalent positions are also encouraged to apply.

For current information about the ONR YIP and eligibility, visit:

  • Proposals addressing research areas (as described in the ONR Science and Technology Department section of ONR's website at which are of interest to ONR Program Officers will be considered.
  • Typical awards are $750,000 over a 36-month period of performance. Applicants may request up to $250,000 for each 12-month interval.
  • The PI of a proposal must be a U.S. citizen, national, or permanent resident (on the date proposals are due).
  • Estimated annual proposal submission deadline: July.


Email us

For assistance developing DoD proposals, please contact Research Development
Join the CU-RES-ADMIN-L mailing list to learn about new funding opportunities and click on the additional resource pages listed below.