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Professional Family Travel Fund

Picture2         Available to all faculty and professional staff. Professional travel is an essential career component for most faculty and some professional staff, many of whom may opt out of important opportunities due to conflicts with caregiving responsibilities.  This is particularly true for early-career primary caregivers, although challenges with elder care responsibilities are increasing. This program awards modest financial assistance to faculty and professional staff primary caregivers who need incremental financial assistance in order to pursue professional travel or other professional obligations above and beyond normal caregiving arrangements.  Examples include but are not limited to caregiving costs during travel to professional conferences or other events, and partial support for accompanying caregiver travel, when it is important that babies or young children accompany a parent on a trip.  Awards will typically be between $300—$500, and will be based on demonstration of need and availability of funds.

Award

During the pilot year, the maximum amount normally awarded will be $300 for domestic travel, and $500 for international travel, though exceptions may be considered.  Funding is considered taxable income, and is subject to tax withholding, and must be used for incremental care giving costs only.  Funding examples include:

  1. Care giving costs during travel to professional workshops, training events, or symposia
  2. Partial support for accompanying child and/or caregiver travel, when it is important for babies or young children to accompany a parent on trips
  3. Child or elder care costs for attendance at local events that are beyond normal scheduling demands, such as an on-campus workshop or evening meeting, etc.

Eligibility

Faculty:  All permanently appointed faculty (tenure-track, tenured, research and clinical faculty) who are primary caregivers are eligible.  Preference will be given to those presenting or exhibiting work or otherwise actively participating in event, and to pre-tenure faculty, single caregivers, and dual career couples.  However, all are eligible to apply. Staff:  Professional staff who are primary caregivers whose travel significantly contributes to their professional development, such as for accreditation or licensing purposes, or to meet critical organizational needs are eligible. All awards are based on demonstration of need and availability of funds.  Spouses, partners and other family members are not normally eligible for travel expenses or compensation. Up to two requests may be made per academic year, though, depending on availability of funds, preference may be given to first-time applicants. Exceptions may be considered.

Application Requirements

The FUNDING APPLICATION may be submitted electronically to worklife@etal.uri.edu and must be accompanied by:

  1. Indication that travel funding will be made available
  2. Documentation of professional conference/meeting to be attended
  3. a budget for caregiving-related travel expenses
  4. an agreement to complete a short survey and submit a brief report upon completion of travel indicating the use and benefits of the award to one’s professional development

Application Deadlines Applications for day trips that occur on weekends or extend into evening hours are accepted on a rolling basis.  Applications for overnight trips should be submitted by midnight of one of the 3 regular deadlines, though requests outside of the normal deadlines may be considered in unusual circumstances:

  • April 1 for travel after May 1
  • September 1 for travel after October 1
  • January 1 for travel after February 1

Review and Selection Process

A panel of 3-5 will be designated by the Work-Life Committee to review, evaluate, and approve recipients to the Work-Life Committee.  Recipients will be notified via an award letter within 2 weeks after application deadline.

Award Dissemination

Two documents must be submitted for reimbursement:  1) A brief EXPENSE VERIFICATION FORM with attached event participation documentation and travel-related caregiving receipts must be submitted by campus mail or in person to the Work-Life Committee* within 14 days of return of trip, along with 2) a completed PFTF Invoice Voucher.   Awards will normally be distributed within the 30 days after approval of reimbursement form.

Report of Award Use

Within one month following receipt of award, recipient is required to submit a short REPORT OF AWARD USE and FOLLOW-UP SURVEY to the Work-Life Committee.  These may be submitted electronically to worklife@etal.uri.edu. At the end of the year, a report will be developed by the Work-Life Committee documenting the use and benefits of this initiative.  Names will not be included, although anonymity cannot be guaranteed.

* Submitting materials to the Work-Life Committee:

Schmidt Labor Research Center 36 Upper College Road, Kingston campus Email: worklife@etal.uri.edu Fax: (401) 874-2954   This program is supported in 2014 by the Schmidt Labor Research Center, URI College Deans, the AAUP, and the Provost’s Office.  

Copyright © 2014 University of Rhode Island.

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