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Office of Graduate and Professional Education

The Professional Development Award for Graduate Students is supported by the Office of the Provost to help University of Delaware graduate students participate in professional conferences pertaining to their field of study. Conference travel provides an essential role in the academic growth and development of graduate students by affording opportunities for presentation of student work in a professional setting, as well as opportunities for networking and exposure to the latest academic research.

The Office of Graduate and Professional Education is charged with the responsibility of administering competitive funds for this purpose. The deadline for application for a travel award is one month prior to the time of travel. The student will be reimbursed upon the submission of appropriate receipts to their department and must conform with University policy on allowable travel reimbursements.

The policies and procedures for these competitive awards are as follows:

1) A student must have a paper or poster accepted for presentation.  A copy of the acceptance letter should be provided, as well as a tentative title.  In the case of multiple authors, the student listed as first author takes precedence over others.

2) The student should provide a clear and detailed written statement as to the value of the conference and presentation for the his/her training and professional career growth. The student should summarize the research to be presented and its relevance to the stated conference.

3) The student's dissertation or thesis advisor must submit a letter of nomination and explanation of the significance of the student's participation.

4) The amount of support will be based on the quality of the application and the level of conference participation up to a maximum of $500.  These grants are competitive and full funding is not guaranteed. The applicant's department or college must match the award offered by the Office of Graduate and Professional Education up to $300. The departmental match must not be from research grant travel monies but must be from other departmental resources.

5) The student must submit a detailed budget for the proposed travel and include information outlining projected costs and all sources of funding being provided for the travel.  Effective January 1, 2009 (for travel after that date) the funds may not be used for meal expenses.

6) The student is required to fill out a "Professional Development Award" application form in a printed format and submit it and the required enclosures to the Office of Graduate and Professional Education. To download the application form click here.

7) Business Expense Reports are to be submitted to Procurement within one month of the conference date.