Grants Manager, Pre-Award


Position Summary

Under the Executive Director of Sponsored Programs and Grants, the Grants Manager, Pre-Award performs a full range of pre-award grant administration and management services including, but not limited to: Collaboration with OSPR team members to work with the college/school faculty, other departmental representatives, and administrative colleagues to identify grant opportunities that align with research and scholarship goals and to develop and to prepare grant proposals for submission to federal, state, local, and private funding sources; interpretation of sponsor rules and guidelines; policy-making and implementation; and continuous improvement of processes for enhanced customer service.

The Grants Manager, Pre-Award is responsible for ensuring that new grant proposals are in full compliance with federal, state, and sponsor regulations and guidelines, and university policies and procedures while supporting the development and submission of highly competitive grant applications. The primary responsibility is to validate grant application compliance with proposal preparation criteria to increase the likelihood of grant funding.

The Grants Manager, Pre-Award provides pre-award administrative guidance and performs substantive review of pre award documents and grant budgets and is responsible for the application and communication of procedures designed to comply with government and private research and program grant sponsors’ regulations and guidelines and to the interpretation and application of National University procedures for adherence to sponsor regulations.


The Grants Manager, Pre-Award is organized, able to execute tenacious follow-up, and manage all the challenges of working on multiple complex grant applications simultaneously utilizing effective project management skills.

Serves as a liaison between the University PIs, the OSPR, and other internal departments to obtain the required internal approvals for submission of grant applications.

The Grants Manager, Pre-Award is responsible for creating and maintaining the highest level of customer service to the university community by reducing administrative burden on grant Project leads and researchers and improving internal operational efficiencies, while balancing institutional obligations to comply with federal, state, local government regulations and private sponsor guidelines and limitations.


Essential Functions:


  • Facilitates communication regarding emerging opportunities to the university community.
  • Initiates and maintains contacts with faculty to assist them in locating pertinent external funding opportunities. Utilize web-based search processes and university search engine subscriptions to prospect, identify, and disseminate external funding opportunities to appropriate faculty (and administrators) and include in funding opportunity prospect lists.
  • Research new grant opportunities for new and existing programs. Regularly compiles the Grants Hot Sheets for each School/College and other departments within National University.
  • Analyzes funding opportunity announcements to understand sponsor requirements and limitations and communicates to faculty and other applicable stakeholders.
  • Assists faculty in drafting administrative components of grant proposals, preparing, reviewing, and verifying proposal budgets, biographical sketches, current and pending support, administrative forms, etc. Reviews guidelines and advises faculty regarding sponsor and university requirements.
  • Performs thorough review of all proposal documents (abstract, project narratives, statements of work, data management plans, facilities, equipment, and other resources lists, budget justification, etc.) offering edits and suggestions to improve document's grammar, organization and structure, flow, clarity and cohesion, emphasis, section development, etc. to ensure compliance with and responsiveness to sponsor’s application requirements.
  • Advises Principal Investigators/Project Directors relative to grant and contract rules, regulations, and procedures relative to the content of proposals given the internal and external guidelines, policies, regulations that will govern the potential award. Conducts training sessions as requested.
  • Organizes proposal reviews during the development process and consults with team members to identify deficiencies and to resolve potential concerns.
  • Facilitates and promotes open communication between all proposal development team members via email, voicemail, and informs all team members of meetings, deadlines, amendments to funding opportunity announcements, and changes to proposal strategy.
  • Provides technical support to Principal Investigators (PIs)/Project Directors (PDs), and other grant project development team members by providing information and guidance as to the use of University Grant and Contract forms.
  • Advises PIs/PDs and the OSPR Executive Director of cost share commitment requirements and potential risks.
  • Collects required pre-award sub-award documentation from collaborating sub-recipients.
  • Conducts a comprehensive review of the final application to ensure the proposal follows all University and Sponsor regulations, guidelines, policies, procedures, and requirements.
  • Enters proposal data into sponsor enterprise application systems as applicable (e.g.,,, PRIMO, eRA Commons, ASSIST, JUSTGrants, and other agency-specific portals.)
  • Works closely with other NU offices (e.g., Grant Accounting, Human Resources, Payroll, School/College Administrators, etc.) in proposal development and application approval.
  • Protects the institution by assuring that completed proposals follow federal, state, agency, sponsor, and institution regulations, requirements, and policies related to grants and contracts.
  • Facilitates NU institutional review, approvals, routing, and submission of proposals in collaboration with the OSPR Executive Director.
  • Prepares and review documents for signature by Authorized University signatory.
  • Manages multiple proposals simultaneously to meet all sponsor submission deadlines.
  • Establishes and maintains official electronic database files of proposals and their respective outcomes within the applicable Cayuse Grants Management modules (Proposals, Sponsored Research, Fund Manager, Outside Interests, Human Ethics, etc.); utilizes the database as a tracking system to document submitted proposals and monitor the status of proposals as they move through internal and external review processes.
  • Analyzes challenges that may have been encountered during the development of a proposal, and applies lessons learned to the next proposal; may conduct and/or participate in debriefing meetings following the receipt of sponsor agency decisions and related feedback in response to grant applications.
  • Assists faculty members and Executive Director, Sponsored Programs and Research with the development, review and submission of Just-In-Time and other post submission information requests.
  • May serve as a liaison between funding agencies, OSPR, and faculty and staff; participates in stakeholder meetings with OSPR Executive Director, faculty, and staff.



  • Stays abreast of most current federal and other government and private sponsor regulations governing contract and grant administration, including 2 CFR 200, the Federal Acquisition Regulations, other applicable state laws, grant sponsors’ requirements, and university policies and procedures. General knowledge of laws, regulations, and policies relating to the protection of human subjects, and facilities security.
  • Stays abreast of the most current operational requirements needed for the efficient and effective development, review, and execution of sponsored contracts and related agreements, including systems and personnel requirements.
  • Coordinates with the Office of Human Research Protections Program staff and other university personnel to ensure effective communication, cooperation, and collaboration to ensure compliance with regulatory requirements.
  • Upon recommendation and prior approval of the OSPR Executive Director, attends pre-award and/or post-award grants administration professional development workshops, trainings, seminars, and conferences to remain knowledgeable of current sponsor and University policies, procedures, and guidance to ensure compliant submissions.


Supervisory Responsibilities: N/A.


Minimum Requirements:

Education & Experience:

  • Bachelor’s degree in business or public administration, accounting/finance, social sciences, or other related field required or equivalent combination of education and experience.
  • Minimum of 3 years of experience working in grants administration.
  • Ability to meet deadlines, manage multiple priorities, provide attention to detail (e.g., proofreading, editing, budget and narrative congruency.)
  • Strong organizational and analytical skills.


Preferred Qualifications/Preparation:

  • Minimum of 5 years of experience working in grants administration in a higher education setting preferred.
  • Working knowledge of Cayuse Grants Management systems preferred.
  • Master’s degree preferred.
  • Certified Research Administrator (CRA) or Certified Pre-Award Research Administrator (CPRA) certification preferred.
  • Intermediate or Advanced level proficiency with budget preparation using Microsoft Excel spreadsheets.


 Competencies/Technical/Functional Skills:

  • Proficient in use of MS Office suites: Excel, Word, Outlook, PowerPoint, Adobe Acrobat Pro DC
  • Working knowledge of enterprise data management applications (e.g., SOAR, People Soft, Agiloft, Workday, Cayuse)
  • Excellent public speaker with willingness to engage new audiences in a discussion of the OSPR mission and impact.
  • Above average written and verbal communication skills; ability to interact positively with various people within the department as well as vendors and clients.
  • Strong attention to detail and ability to work well under time constraints and constantly changing priorities are critical to success in this position.
  • Ability to participate as an active team member of the team and organization and work toward a common goal. Contributes fully to the team effort and plays an integral part in the smooth running of teams without necessarily taking the lead.
  • Accepts personal accountability, proactively seeks resolution for personal limitations head-on; and supports honesty and respect towards others, the company and oneself.
  • Actively seeks to influence, build effective relationships, and gain alignment with peers, functional partners and/or external partners to accomplish business objectives.
  • Develops new insights into situations; questions conventional approaches; encourages new ideas and innovations; designs and implements new or cutting-edge programs/processes. Ability to generate and/or recognize imaginative or creative solutions that generate successful outcomes.
  • Working knowledge, principles, and practices of office management/systems within a higher education environment, preferred. Demonstrates an understanding of underlying organizational issues.
  • Ability to drive towards achieving measurable and challenging goals to support organizational success. Demonstrates the ability to focus on achieving results consistent with the organization’s objectives. As a leader, develops goals based on the organization’s vision, mission, strategic goals, and objectives.
  • Strong interpersonal skills and the ability to effectively communicate with a wide range of individuals of constituencies in a diverse community.
  • Work independently and foster a cooperative spirit within a large and/or small team of diverse cultures, while working in a fast-paced environment with multiple deadlines and frequently changing priorities.
  • Intermediate use of computers and Microsoft Office Suite Applications such as Word, Excel, Power Point, Outlook. Experience using Student Information System (SIS) such as SOAR/Peoplesoft systems.

Location: Remote


Travel:  Travel required as necessary, may include occasional university-wide/college/school meetings and conferences.


Candidate receiving offers will be offered a salary/pay rate commensurate with experience that vary based on a candidate’s qualifications, skills, and competencies.  Absent exceptional circumstances, candidates will be offered a salary within this range for this position. The minimum salary will be offered based on the minimum exemption threshold based on state of residency. Base pay is one component of National University’s total rewards package, as we are dedicated to supporting the needs of the “whole you” with our holistic approach to employee benefits by offering comprehensive well-being benefits for you and your family.  For full details about our benefit plan offerings, please visit For Part-time benefits, please click here.


Compensation Range:


Annual Salary: $63,720.00 - $86,020.00


National University is committed to maintaining a high-quality, diverse workforce representative of the populations we serve. National University employs more than 5,000 faculty and staff and serves over 41,000 students. We are united in our mission to meet the global education demands of the 21st Century and are dedicated to creating a supportive academic and work environment that allows students, faculty and staff to develop their interests and talents while experiencing a sense of community and a commitment to diversity. With programs available both online and at our many campus locations, National University is a leader in creating innovative solutions to education and meeting the needs of our diverse student population, including adult learners and working professionals.


National University offers an opportunity to work in an innovative environment that supports diversity.


National University (NU) is proud to be an equal opportunity employer and does not unlawfully discriminate against any employee or applicant for employee per applicable federal, state and local laws. At NU, a diverse mix of highly talented, innovative and creative people come together to make the impact of a lifetime for each of our student learners. All qualified applicants will receive equal consideration for employment, education, and admission at National University. We are focused on equality and believe deeply in diversity of race, color, ancestry, age, family care status, veteran status, marital status, creed, religion, sex, gender, sexual orientation, religion, ethnicity, national origin, and other legally protected group status.

About Us

National University is breaking barriers in education – and in the workplace.


We’re united in our mission to build a better future for our more than 5,000 employees and our 45,000+ students.


National University prioritizes our employee’s well-being and growth by offering a diverse and inclusive culture, competitive pay and benefits packages, development and advancement opportunities, remote-first work perks, and more.


We value and reward the hard work of our faculty and staff.

Contact Information

National University
First Name
Last Name
(252) 567-0447
Contact Email
Contact URL

Background Information

4-Year Degree
Years of Experience
  • College/University
  • Sponsored Projects/Programs
  • Grants and Contracts
  • Compliance
Work Authorization
U.S. Citizen
Security Clearance

Target Job Information

$63,720 - $86,020
Job Type
  • Full Time