SPA Introduction

Sponsored Projects Accounting (SPA) is responsible for Post Award Administration. In the usual life cycle of a sponsored award, there is both a “pre-award” and a “Post Award” phase.

  • The “pre-award” phase includes the preparation of the proposal, its submission, any subsequent negotiation of award terms and conditions, acceptance of the award and initiation of the project.
  • The “Post Award” phase includes everything that happens from the time the award has been initiated until the project has been completed and the award closed out.

Simply put, Post Award Administration is what happens after the proposal is submitted and the award is made. SPA’s involvement begins once the signed/executed award is received from Office of Grants and Contracts (OGC), becoming “Post Award”.

SPA, a group of professional accountants and support staff focused on customer service, will assist the University by providing technical accounting support through financial reporting, transaction processing expertise, and interpretation of governmental regulations, thereby ensuring the data integrity of the financial information of the University. We are uniquely positioned to provide financial accounting services within the context of the requirements of our external sponsoring agencies and auditors.

SPA serves both the researcher and the agency, having responsibilities to both entities. A key role of our office is to respond to the expectations of both the researcher and the agency.

Our structural organization is in Business Affairs within Administration and Finance (A&F) and reports to

  • Senior Vice President for Administration and Finance through
    • University Controller

SPA has approval authority for all financial requirements on the award to ensure a complete and accurate financial representation and coordinates all financial activities, including accounting, financial administration, internal/external reporting, and establishment of financial policies and procedures. It is important to recognize that many of our institutional policies and procedures are directly related to ensuring that audits proceed with minimal disruption to daily research activities.

Because the federal government is the primary agency of our awards, emphasis is placed on the federal requirements relating to post award administration. Also, as you become familiar with our policies and procedures you will see most of the systems in place mirror the federal requirements.

Management of project funding is complex and rapidly changing. The Post Award Administrative function is in place to ensure timely and adequate stewardship as well as assist Principal Investigators (PI’s) in the sound management of project funds and to mitigate audit risk.

The purpose of our website is not to visit the specific requirements of each regulation or policy that makes up post award administration but to focus on the services SPA provides for the management of post award administration.

As you progress through the content you will find additional information related to the specific roles and functions of each team. Relevant NMSU specific information (policies, forms, responsible departments, etc.) can be accessed via links to direct you to additional resources for more information and assistance.

The format of this content follows our organizational structure where functions are in sequence and progression of the post award cycle:

  • Post Award Administration, Systems and Project Management Team
  • Award Compliance and Financial Management Team
  • Restricted Funds Cash Management Team


Post Award Administration covers a myriad of tasks and is an integral part of NMSU’s stewardship activities with respect to external funds. We hope this provides an introduction to the services provided by SPA and we hope you gain an understanding of the joint responsibilities between our office and yours.

Please feel free to contact us at any time at 646-1675 or

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