Graduate School

Conference Travel Fund

Graduate students presenting at academic conferences, in person or virtually, can apply to the Graduate School for up to $700 to cover registration, travel, and other related expenses.

Presenting papers in-person or virtually at conferences is important to graduate students' academic careers and growth as professionals, and is relevant experience for all career paths. Given funding limitations, an application does not guarantee support. Some programs have independent funds to support such travel; students should check with their Director of Graduate Study (DGS) for more information.

All applications and associated documentation must be submitted online through UFunds. Please email with any questions.

Award Eligibility

  • Doctoral students in years 1 - 6 or on a COVID Appointment Extension; Master's students
    Students are eligible to apply for conference travel funding if they are doctoral students in years 1-6, doctoral students on a COVID Appointment Extension, or Master’s students during the entire duration of the travel or virtual conference associated with the award. Students currently on leave are not eligible. Students enrolled in degree programs in the Division of Biology and Medicine are not eligible; please see the BioMed Travel Awards.

  • Presenting, either in-person or virtually, at a conference
    Students must show proof that they have been invited to present at a conference. This can be an official email or letter of invitation to present at the conference or a program from the conference with the student’s name and presentation title listed. The Conference Travel Fund is available for both domestic and international conferences. Awards will not be granted for merely attending a conference. 

    MFA students, given the difference in their program structure, are also eligible to apply to the Conference Travel Fund if they have been invited to participate or perform in a festival, retreat, workshop, production, or other training event that is not sponsored by Brown University.

  • Receive up to $700 in Conference Travel Funds per academic year
    Students can receive up to $700 per academic year (June 1 through May 31). The academic year awarded funding counts toward is determined by the end date of the travel or virtual conference. Funding can be used for one conference or split among more than one, but a separate application must be submitted for each trip. Students who apply for Conference Travel Funds for a trip and find they do not need to use the full amount for that trip should notify so that the remaining balance can be made available to them for future applications. There is no limit on the number of times a student can apply for conference funding.

  • Apply at least 14 days before the start of your conference or travel
    Applications must be submitted through UFunds at least 14 days before the start of travel or the start of the conference. Students not able to make this deadline should email to see if an exception can be made. This requirement allows the Graduate School time to process applications and notify students whether they will receive funding or not prior to the start of travel or the start of the conference.

  • Provide an approved Safety Plan, if applicable
    All students are required to register their travel plans in TravelSafe (for both domestic and international travel). In addition, some international travel destinations require completion of a Safety Plan in TravelSafe and approval from the Global Travel Risk Assessment Committee (GTRAC). Find current US DOS travel advisory levels in TravelSafe by clicking on the 'Travel Advisories' tab (destinations at Level 3 or 4 - designated at High Risk - require GTRAC approval). Check Brown’s current travel guidelines and requirements on the International Travel Risk Management webpage. Additionally, transactions with comprehensively embargoed countries, including certain academic collaborations and the exchange of research materials, may require authorization from the government. If you are considering collaborating with or traveling to an embargoed country, you must contact Brown's Export Control Team well in advance.

Using your Conference Travel Fund Award

The Conference Travel Fund award is processed as a reimbursement through a student’s home department. Prepaid expenses such as airfare, conference registration, and prepaid hotel rooms can be submitted for reimbursement prior to travel. Expenses that are not paid for in advance, as well as per diem meals, can be submitted once the student returns from travel or the conference concludes. All documentation should be submitted to a student’s home department within 30 days of the completion of travel. 

Students who do not use the full amount of the Conference Travel Fund award for their trip (e.g they applied for $700, but only ended up using $500) should notify so that the remaining funds can be made available to them for a future Conference Travel Fund application. Note that a new application must be submitted for each trip.

Other Funding Opportunities