How to Appoint a Participant

Identifying a project and a participant

Dr. Dimuthu Manamgoda

As an ORISE participant at the Systematic Mycology and Microbiology Laboratory, USDA-ARS in Beltsville, Maryland, Dr. Dimuthu Manamgoda studies the taxonomy and phylogeny of fungal plant pathogens infecting grasses using DNA sequences, including next generation genome sequencing tools, and electron microscopy.

The first step in bringing a new participant on board is to identify a suitable research project. The project should give the participant an opportunity to receive hands-on experience that complements his or her academic studies. If the participant will have a full-time appointment, then the project should require full-time attention (forty hours per week).

ORISE can help to solicit applications if desired. Selecting a candidate for an appointment is the responsibility of the mentor; ORISE is not involved in this process. The mentor is expected to ensure that the selected candidate is eligible for an ORISE appointment.

How to bring your new participant on-board

ARS employees may access the ARS requirements and guidelines for hosting ORISE research participants on the ARS intranet.

Once an ARS mentor has selected a candidate for a project, there are several steps that need to be completed before the candidate can begin the appointment.

The ARS mentor is responsible for completing a Selection Form for each selected candidate, which specifies the funds which will cover the costs of the appointment.

Once ORISE has received the Selection Form and has confirmed the availability of the specified funds, we will send the candidate an appointment letter. All candidates must receive security clearance from the facility and an appointment letter from ORISE before their first day of participation to ensure that they will be eligible to receive a stipend.

All participants are required to have health insurance in place no later than the first day of the appointment.

Candidates who are not U.S. citizens or Lawful Permanent Residents must also consult with ORISE immigration staff to ensure that they have the authorizations necessary for participation before beginning their appointments.

Activating stipend payments

ORISE will need the following items before activating stipend payments. Some of these items may be submitted directly by the program, but it is ultimately the candidate’s responsibility to ensure ORISE has received them. All documents must be in English or include an official English translation.

  • Signed Appointment Letter and Terms of Appointment
  • All other forms and documents included in the appointment packet
  • U.S. Citizen Participants - Request for Proof of U.S. Citizenship Form and approved U.S. citizenship document OR Foreign National Participants - Proof that you have a valid visa and immigration status
  • Proof of attendance or completion of candidate’s degree
  • Verification of current health insurance

Finally, the mentor will certify via email to ORISE the date upon which the candidate began participation. Once all of these steps are complete, ORISE will begin stipend payments.