Conference Travel Grants

Facilitating presentation of original work by UCR graduate and professional students

Quicklinks

Types of conference travel awards


 1: GSA-Chancellor’s Conference Travel Award: this award is supported through the GSA referendum and matching funds from the Chancellor.

2: GSA-Grad Division Conference Travel Fellowship: this fellowship is administered through the GSA and funded through Grad Division.

GSA provides conference travel grants to fee paying graduate students in good standing, currently attending the University of California, Riverside.

CTG does not cover expenses: Debates, Retreats, Workshops, Summer schools, Any tuition-based event, Conferences occurring at UCR.

Regional Caps Per Conference

Regional Reimbursement Caps as of July 1, 2023,
Effective for Conference Travel Beginning on July 1, 2023, the following regional reimbursement caps are applied to the Conference Travel Grant.

The Annual GSA travel grant cap per person for 2023-2024 is $1,600.00. These caps are re-evaluated monthly based on available funding for the rest of the year.

Effective January 1, 2022, the UC approved mileage reimbursement rate for personal vehicle travel is $0.655 cents/mile, only if it’s less expensive than flying. If traveling by plane is cheaper, GSA will reimburse mileage up to the cost of the airfare comparison.

Deadlines

Applications are due before the first day of the previous month in which your conference ends by 5:00 pm. Deadlines are subject to change to the following business day if the deadline falls on a UCR legal holiday.

Late applications will not be accepted and are not eligible for an appeal. 

*You can apply to the CTG up to six months before your conference date, even if you do not know if you have been accepted yet.

How to apply

Step one (before conference)

We only accept electronic submissions through our online system. Just click here and follow the instructions!  (We do not work with Concur system)

  • Applications are due before the first day of the previous month in which your conference ends by 5:00 pm. Late applications are not accepted, without exception.
  • Complete the checklist here to ensure you have completed all parts of the application process correctly.
  • We do not accept physical applications.
  • Prior to leaving for the conference, submit the completed recommendation form from your adviser. The deadline for sending the Letter of Recommendation is one day before the start of the conference.

Step two (post conference)

The reimbursement guide may assist you in this process. Post conference materials (expense form, receipts, etc.) must be emailed to gsaofficeassistant@gmail.com by the 7th business day from the last day of your conference. 

  • Post-conference materials must be submitted in full PDF format, no screenshots allowed.
  • If additional time is needed to submit them, please email gsagrant@ucr.edu and request an extension before you leave for your conference. Late materials are not accepted.
  • Once your application is processed, the receipts will be made available to your home department.
  • NO RECEIPTS SHOULD BE PROCESSED BY YOUR HOME DEPARTMENT UNTIL WE HAVE FINISHED PROCESSING YOUR RECEIPTS AT GSA.

Forms and Appeals

Forms

Click on any of the items listed below to access the current GSA form. 

Appeals

Applicants who are denied funding will receive a letter indicating the reason they were denied. You may appeal an award amount or appeal the decision to decline by writing a letter to the committee explaining why you feel you deserve to have your application re-evaluated. This letter must be received by the committee within 30 days of receiving your reimbursement or letter of decline. The committee meets once a month. The conference travel grant committee will re-evaluate your application at the next meeting and issue a new decision. You will be notified of this decision by letter or email. If you are still unhappy, you may appeal a second time. Once again, this appeal must be submitted in writing within 30 days of notification of the committee decision concerning the first appeal. You are limited to two appeals.

Submit all appeals in person to the GSA Office or to gsagrant@ucr.edu.


Conference Travel Grant Coordinator: Antonio Rivera-Montoya
Email: gsagrant@ucr.edu
Tel: (951) 827-3141

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

The purpose of the conference travel grant is to promote the presentation at conferences of original graduate student research done at UCR.

Conference travel grants are small grants available to UCR graduate students who are attending professional conferences. Please read the conference travel grant FAQ for more information about this program.

If you are a registered graduate student in good standing at UC Riverside who is planning on presenting at or attending an event, you may be eligible for an award. Students on filing fee status are eligible. Students on leave of absence or in absentia registration are not eligible for conference travel grants. New graduate students that are presenting research prior to their work at UC Riverside are not eligible for conference travel grants. Conference travel grants are not intended to fund, among others: workshops, research, instruction, training, classes, job interviews, or events in which participants are solely from UCR. If your application is denied because it was determined to be a workshop, you are welcome to appeal this decision. Please refer to the appeals section on the “How to Apply” page of this website.

In 2006, UCR Accounting had GSA implement internal controls over the Conference Travel Grant award and notification method. Applications are due on the first business day of the previous month to project how much the program is going to distribute for the month in question, and to let the graduate student’s home department know of the GSA award. These internal controls ensure GSA does not run into financial trouble and notifies the student’s home department to expect an award letter from GSA.
UCR Accounting expects all departments to process travel reimbursements within 21 days from the last day of the conference. GSA implemented the “7 th business day” policy in order to comply with UCR Accounting policies.

You must be the primary presenter of graduate student work that was completed at UCR. The Conference Travel Grant program will only fund one graduate student per presentation. If you are not the first author, you must submit a letter from the conference organizer or the session chair indicating that you were the primary presenter.

Fill out the application here and submit it by the first of the month preceding the last day of the conference.

Conference travel grants are funded by Graduate Students’ fees and a matching grant from the Office of the Chancellor. For more information, please see the conference travel grant history page.

The yearly GSA travel grant cap per person is $1,600.00 per academic year until further notice.

Conference travel grants are not intended to fund, among others: research, instruction, training, classes, job interviews, or events in which participants are solely from UCR.  Workshops are not eligible. If presenting as part of a panel, applicant must show proof of individual presentation.

Among other ineligible expenses, conference travel grants will not cover meals, memberships in professional associations, tuition, phone calls, presentation materials, or other incidental expenses.

Outside funding is taken into account to ensure that nobody receives more from all sources than they actually spent.

Fixed amount means that your department, advisor, or some other award pays a set amount regardless of the amount of your GSA conference travel grant award.

Matching grant means that your department or advisor will provide an amount of funding equal to that of your GSA conference travel grant award.

Balance of expenses means that your department of advisor will pay the remaining balance of your expenses after receipt of your GSA conference travel grant award.

Conference travel grants do not fund professors or departments. Only expenses incurred by a student are eligible for reimbursement. This includes the sharing of accommodations or travel. You must document on every application what amount was paid by each student. Conference travel grants cannot reimburse students for amounts that they did not pay.

The amount of grant funding you will receive depends on your level of attendance. There are two levels of attendance, as Presenters or Attendees. In the case of participating in a round table you must lead this group as a moderator. Participation as a panelist is qualified as an attendee. Following these categories, please send us the following proof of your participation in the event.

Proof of attendance (for attendees and presenters), such as conference badge, the original pamphlet/brochure, or request a letter to that effect when checking in at your conference.

Proof of Presentation (for presenters), for example, the program of the conference in case the applicant is going to present a poster or talk at the conference, otherwise the applicant will be considered as an attendee and the travel expenses will be covered up to $300.

Proof of Acceptance (for presenters), for example, the acceptance email for your paper / abstract or other documentation issued by the organization that certifies your acceptance to the conference.

Each quarter the conference travel grant committee decides on a maximum award per student per conference. The amounts vary by the location of the conference with local conferences receiving less that international conferences. These caps determine the maximum amount that can be reimbursed, and expenses lower than the cap are reimbursed in full. The cap may be lowered for any particular month depending on the number of applicants.

Conference travel grants are not intended to be your primary funding source. Always check first with your thesis advisor and department to see if there are funds available to offset your travel costs. Departments often match the amount we award you or will give you a set dollar amount. Remember you are required to report outside funding on your mini-grant application and to follow your department’s policies regarding travel reimbursement. Reimbursements cannot be over 100%.

Each application is individual per conference. If you have 2 conferences on close dates you must apply separately for each of them.

Applicants who are denied funding will receive a letter indicating the reason they were denied. You may appeal an award amount or appeal the decision to decline by writing a letter to the committee explaining why you feel you deserve to have your application re-evaluated. This letter must be received by the committee within 30 days of receiving your check or letter of decline. The conference travel grant committee will re-evaluate your application at the next meeting and issue a new decision. You will be notified of this decision by letter or email. If you are still unhappy, you may appeal a second time. Once again, this appeal must be submitted in writing within 30 days of notification of the committee decision concerning the first appeal. You are limited to two appeals. Submit all appeals in person to the GSA Office or to gsagrant@ucr.edu.

In the case of graduate students who collaborate on research eligible for the CTG award, only one student from UC Riverside may apply as a presenter. Other collaborators from UC Riverside may apply as attendees only. Collaborators from institutions other than UCR are not eligible for the CTG award. Multiple presenters for the same work are not funded. If that is the case, please contact the coordinator in advance.

Several locations have reported an increase in the use by travelers of Internet sites to purchase vacation packages for University-related business trips. This creates issues with providing appropriate documentation because charges are not itemized. These packages will not be reimbursed in the absence of receipts that itemize each expense.

GSA Staff has the right to report unacceptable behavior (intimidating language, body language, etc…) to UCR’s student conduct department. The graduate student will be denied current and future GSA Conference Travel Grants. GSA staff is here to help you and deserve to be treated respectfully during interactions.

If you need further assistance or would like to know more about the conference travel grant committee, please contact us at (951) 827-3141 or send us an email at gsagrant@ucr.

History

Before 1999, the Office of the Chancellor gave GSA $12,000 annually to help graduate students with expenses associated with travel to conferences. The grants were truly mini back then, students could apply once a year, and there was a different fixed amount allocated for local, national and international applications. In 1998-1999, while negotiating an increase in the allocation, then Chancellor Ray Orbach bluffed that, if the graduate students agreed to tax themselves for this purpose, he would match the fee increase. On the 1999 GSA elections ballot, a referendum was included proposing a raise in GSA fees from $10 to $20 per student per quarter. The $10 increase would be phased in $2 each year, the additional fees were earmarked for the conference travel grant program, and the Office of the Chancellor would match the increase. The referendum passed, and as a result the GSA rolled in $132,000 for the conference travel grant program in 2003-2004 (the year when the fees finally capped at $20 per student per quarter).

In April 2006, the mini-grant committee changed the program’s name to the conference travel grant program. The mini-grant committee adopted this new name to avoid confusion between the mini-grant and mini-GSA programs and to clarify the types of events that the grants fund. The program has also adopted a mission statement, which is now available on the main conference travel grant page. GSA thanks the Chancellor for continuing Ray Orbach’s commitment to fund the conference travel grant program.

Thank you to Lego Grad Student for permission to use their work throughout the website. 
Follow @legogradstudent for more.

Contact Info
UCRiverside HUB 203
8:00 AM – 4:30 PM
(951) 827-3141

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