Undergraduate Research

Conference Funding

Student Conference Funding

Note: the Dean's office has allocated all available student conference travel funds for the 2019-20 academic year. We have supported 25 students to present their research at regional, national, and international conferences.

New requests may be made for conferences that take place in the 2020-21 academic year beginning July 1, 2020.

The Office of the Dean of Arts and Sciences maintains a limited fund to support student participation in professional meetings to present research. Students who have conducted research as research assistants or honors students or in another capacity, and who wish to travel to a professional meeting to present their work, may apply to the Office of the Dean of Arts and Sciences for grants to cover half of their total travel costs, up to $500. The remainder of expenses may come directly from the student, a faculty grant (if the terms of the grant allow), a departmental gift fund, or another source.

Given the high demand for support, funding is limited to students currently enrolled in the college and recent graduates who wish to report their research presentations during the summer months immediately following graduation in June, July, or August.

Students may request dean’s office funding for no more than one conference from the time of their enrollment at the college through three months following their graduation. Departments seeking funding for more than two students to attend the same conference should consult with the dean’s office before submitting the request. The total amount of funding awarded to multiple students from one department will not exceed $1,000 per meeting.

As a condition of funding, students must provide the specific dates of travel, the means of travel, and the place of accommodation (hotel, friend, etc.). Prior to travel, the student must sign and submit to the dean’s office a waiver releasing Oberlin College from liability while the student is off campus and acknowledging that the student is subject to the college’s regulations, policies, and procedures while off campus. A waiver form is available from the dean’s office Blackboard site.

No reimbursement will be given to any student who does not submit a travel waiver in advance of the approved conference travel or who does not submit a brief report and receipts within 30 days after the conference.

How to request support

Students should apply by sending a letter to Elizabeth Hamilton , associate dean of arts and sciences, indicating:

(a) the name of the professional meeting, its location, and date(s);
(b) a brief description of the nature of the research project that is to be presented and the manner in which the results will be presented;
(c) a budget detailing anticipated travel, registration, and lodging costs;
(d) the name of the faculty member who supervised the research; and
(e) a travel waiver.

The faculty research supervisor should also send an email endorsing the trip. If the faculty member has a grant with funds allocated to student travel, the grant funds should be utilized for that purpose. Chairs should indicate by supporting emails if departmental funds are being used for the match; faculty should indicate by supporting e-mails if grant funds are providing the match.

Travel grant funds are distributed on a reimbursement basis, and receipts are required for all expenses. Within 30 days of the conference students who receive travel funds must submit to Angela Szunyogh , assistant dean for business and operations, a brief report on their conference participation along with receipts. Reimbursable expenses are limited to travel, registration and lodging.

The college also reserves the right not to grant a reimbursement for any travel during which the student engages in any conduct violating applicable college policies, practices, or procedures, or any applicable law.