Travel Grants

Travel Recommendations

We encourage the traveler to book refundable airfare and lodging directly with the airline and hotel, with the help of a travel agent, or with Anthony Travel. Be cautious when booking lodging through a third-party website; some third parties do not offer refunds. Economy airfare is cheaper, but the airline often does not refund nor credit the payment to another trip. Review the airline’s refund and cancellation policies before booking. The Graduate School does not reimburse the student for travel that was not taken, so the student could lose the funds spent on economy airfare.

Graduate School travel grants are designed to help defray costs incurred by graduate students traveling to a conference or professional meeting to present research conducted at the University of Arkansas.

Available Grants (subject to availability of funds)

250 doctoral/MFA student travel grants: reimbursement of the total approved travel expenses per university travel policy, up to a maximum award of $1,000 ($1,100 starting July 1, 2022).

75 master/educational specialist travel grants (graduate certificate not funded): reimbursement of the total approved travel expenses per university travel policy, up to a maximum award of $600 ($700 starting July 1, 2022).

  • Once the maximum allocation in each category above has been reached, no further travel grants will be approved for the fiscal year (July 1-June 30).
  • If the maximum number of grants is not awarded during the first half of the fiscal year (July 1- December 31), the dean of the graduate school may approve grants be made available in the second half of the fiscal year (January 1- June 30). This is solely at the dean’s discretion and is contingent on available funding.

Terms and Conditions

  • Travel grants are awarded on a first-come, first-served basis.
  • A graduate student may receive one travel grant per fiscal year (July 1 – June 30). No exceptions.
  • A travel grant may not be split between two trips.
  • Submission of the application does not guarantee an award.
  • Graduate students should actively seek additional sources of funding support for travel (e.g., from conference sponsors, professional organizations, academic colleges, and personal funds).
  • For fiscal year 2022 (July 1, 2021 - June 30, 2022) departments are required to commit at least 10% of the total travel to the student's travel funding. Departments may commit more if their budgets allow.
    • The departmet commitment is suggested, but not required, starting July 1, 2022.
  • Only travel to professional meetings and conferences will be funded. The purpose of the travel will be to present the graduate student’s research that has been conducted at, and bears the name of, the University of Arkansas.
  • In the case of multiple graduate students working on a presentation, only one student will be funded as the presenter.
  • Airline reservations must be made at least 14 days in advance of the trip, in accordance with university travel policy.
  • If a graduate student has a choice between driving and flying to the destination, reimbursement is based on which transportation method is least expensive.
  • If a graduate student receives a travel grant, but does not use it, the student MUST notify both the Graduate School and the department that the travel grant will not be used.

Eligibility Requirements

  • The applicant must be in good academic standing and in a U of A graduate degree program at the time of travel.
  • The applicant must be enrolled as a full-time graduate student during the semester the travel occurs, but the following exceptions may be considered:
    • Students on 9-month graduate assistant appointment who are not funded during the summer are not required to enroll during the summer.
    • Students who have been approved for reduced enrollment may have one travel grant while on reduced enrollment.
  • Students who have graduated from their graduate degree program are not eligible for travel grant funding after the graduation date.
  • University of Arkansas appointed employees are not eligible for these graduate student travel grants. Tenured and tenure-track faculty should apply for funding through the travel assistance program.

Application Process

A completed application with all required information and supporting documentation should be submitted to the Office of Graduate Fellowships, GEAR 213 or, at least 6 weeks prior to the start of the travel.

Graduate students are encouraged to submit applications well in advance to take advantage of early-bird registration and travel discounts.

Late applications may be denied. Incomplete applications will be returned to the graduate student.

A complete application will include:

  • Graduate Student Travel Grant Application (use appropriate form, based on travel dates):
  • An abstract of the paper/poster being presented
    • Panel/oral presentations require a statement from the graduate student explaining how the student’s research is the basis for the presentation. Performance/portfolio presentations require a statement explaining how the student’s graduate study is the basis for the presentation.
  • Proof of paper/poster acceptance, if available, at the time of application
    • Proof of acceptance can include an email from the conference committee or a screen shot of the presentation listing from the conference program. If the acceptance is received after the travel grant application is submitted, the acceptance should be sent separately as soon as it is received. If no acceptance notice, or other proof of presentation is submitted, the travel grant will be cancelled.

Completed applications will be reviewed and both the graduate student and the department contact(s) listed on the application will be notified by email. Please allow 2-3 weeks for review and processing.

Reimbursement for Approved Expenses

  • Students will work with their departments on travel arrangements and submit all necessary travel receipts to the department for processing.
    • If 30 days have passed, and the student has not submitted receipts to the department, and no explanation of the delay has been provided by the student, the travel grant may be cancelled. Once the travel grant is cancelled, it cannot be reinstated.
  • Departments will receive the travel grant worktag to use in submitting Spend Authorizatons (SAs) and Expense Reports (ERs) in Workday. The worktag will be sent to the department contact person listed on the travel grant application. An SA or ER that exceeds the travel grant maximum for a student will be returned to the department for adjustment.
  • Only approved expenses per the university’s travel policy will be reimbursed. Once the reimbursement has been processed, no supplemental claims will be accepted.
    • Important Caution Regarding Car Rentals: The University has existing vehicle rental contracts in place with Enterprise, Hertz and National. These contracts include extensive liability insurance that is extremely important when traveling for the university. Other non-contract rental vendors like Budget, Alamo or Turo Rentals are not considered approved, reimbursable costs. For more information, review the Transportation category under the university’s travel policy.

Additional Grants through Graduate Professional Student Congress (subject to availability of funds)

The Graduate and Professional Student Congress (GPSC) is excited to offer funding for students traveling to present their own original work. The GPSC travel grant is funding “of last resort”, meant to help students who have already exhausted other funding sources open to them. Currently, no travel grant shall exceed $500 dollars. Please visit the GSPC website (opens a new window) for more information, application and deadlines.