Student Funding for Professional Conferences

Each year, the School of Computing and Information is able to provide a limited amount of funding to support student attendance at professional and academic conferences. Students’ expenses are partially underwritten by the School. No student will receive funding to cover all expenses. All graduate students are eligible for this funding one time per fiscal year (for example: July 1, 2017 through June 30, 2018). Therefore, please consider your applications carefully, and prioritize your requests.

Funding for a given year is limited; it is granted on a competitive basis.

To be considered for this funding:

You may apply for funding on this schedule:

If conference occurs between: You can apply between: You will be notified between:
July 1 – Aug. 31  May 1 – June 1  May 15 – June 1
 Sept. 1 – Oct.31  July 1 – Aug. 1 July 15 – Sept. 1
 Nov. 1 – Dec. 31  Sept. 1 – Oct. 1  Sept. 15 – Nov. 1
 Jan. 1 – Feb. 29 Nov. 1 – Dec. 1 Nov. 15 – Jan. 1
 March 1 – April 30  Jan. 1 – Feb. 1  Jan. 15 – March 1
 May 1 – June 30  March 1 – April 1  March 15 – May 1


  1. Submit an application form by these deadlines.
  2. Provide proof of either holding membership in the association which is hosting the conference or that you have a paper/poster accepted for presentation at the conference.
  3. Ask your advisor to send an e-mail to, endorsing your application for funding. In the endorsement the advisor should state what funding they are contributing to your travel and/or what they cannot cover for you with an explanation as to why they cannot cover it. Applications will not be considered until this endorsement/explanation has been received.

Priority is given to students who meet one or more of the following criteria:

  • Are invited to participate in a conference (e.g. present a paper or poster, serve as a speaker, moderator, panelist, etc.);
  • Hold committee assignments within the association;
  • Hold “Active Student Status” at the time of application
  • Have maintained a high GPA;
  • Are active members of student, local, regional, or national professional organizations (e.g. SCIGO; Kappa Theta Pi; Doctoral Guild; Women in Computer Science; Diversity Student Organization; or the student chapters of related professional or academic organizations).

If funding is granted, the students must abide by the Travel Award Guidelines.

Travel Award Guidelines

You may also download a copy of the Travel Award Guidelines. Required forms and documentation:

BEFORE the conference:
  • Award acceptance form: Emailed to you if chosen for an award, must be submitted to Marcy Walls at least 5 days before the start of the conference.
AFTER the conference:
  • Proof of travel
    • This includes one of the following; Original transportation ticket stubs, Google map/driving directions, conference badge, etc.
  • Original receipts:
    • Receipts may be submitted only for the actual dates of conference attendance. ​
    • Receipts should be taped to a single-side of an 8.5” x 11” sheet of paper​, organize receipts on pages by date
    • Credit card statements may not be used to support in lieu of receipts.

If you are receiving funding from multiple sources (faculty grants, student organizations, etc.) submit all receipts to Marcy Walls. Expenses must be entered on a single expense report.

Funding provided by the School may only be used for the following travel expenses:

  • Airfare
  • Car
    • Car rentals are available through the University’s Fleet Services. For guidelines and pricing, please visit the Parking & Transportation Services Web site​. To process a rental, you must meet with Marcy Walls.
    • Personal car: mileage must be submitted for the exact number of miles traveled to the conference site from the Information Science Building (135 N Bellefield Ave, Pgh PA 15213). The total cost of using a privately owned vehicle including mileage, excess lodging, or other additional cost should not exceed the cost of air transportation. The operator of his/her privately owned vehicle assumes all responsibilities.
  • ​Trains, shuttles, taxis, parking
    • Highway tolls will not be reimbursed for those driving a personal car (tolls are considered a part of the mileage reimbursement)
  • If you share a room, please note that reimbursements will only be given to the person whose name appears on the original receipt. The University will not split reimbursements from one or duplicate receipts.
  • Calculated by the amount on the original receipt. Meals are not to exceed the Standard Meal Allowance (M&IE) for your destination, please visit this site for the M&IE maximum allowance for meals.
Conference Registration Fees​

Funding DOES NOT cover the following items

  • ​Personal items​​
  • Alcohol
  • Sightseeing expenses
  • Auto repairs
  • Phone calls
  • Souvenirs
  • Hotel room/on-flight movies
  • Baby or pet-sitters

Additional Funding Opportunities

For PhD students
  • Your advisor may petition the Dean’s Office for supplemental conference funding if you are presenting research and/or representing the School of Computing and Information in a significant way.
For Graduate Students
For Undergraduate Students

Contact Information

​Marcy Walls
500 Information Sciences Building
Pittsburgh, PA 15213