Student/Postdoc Travel Funds

There are several types of funding available for students and postdocs to travel for conferences, workshops, research collaboration, or other types of BEACON-related travel. Please see below for more information

Ongoing: BEACON Student/Postdoc Travel Funds

BEACON has a limited amount of funds available to support travel for undergraduates, graduate students, and postdocs who do not already have travel funds in a BEACON-supported project. Types of travel typically supported include: 1) a scientific conference at which you are presenting BEACON-related work; 2) a workshop that will be beneficial to your research; or 3) travel to a BEACON partner institution to collaborate with other BEACON researchers.

If you have a BEACON-supported project with unexpended travel funds remaining, you must use those funds rather than applying for other BEACON support.

In general, BEACON will want to share in travel expenses with other sources.  For example, for presenters at conferences, students should also apply to the Graduate School, which helps to fund such travel.  Departments may also be willing to support some conference travel for presenters.  If your travel is solely for BEACON collaboration, however, other sources may not be available, and we encourage you to apply for BEACON funds.

For MSU personnel, these funds are accessible through BEACON HQ.  At the partner universities, these funds are available as part of each university’s “infrastructure” budget.

To apply, please download the application form here: BEACONTravelApp.doc or BEACONTravelApp.pdf.

Fill it out, and return it, along with a letter of support from your adviser, to the proper person at your institution:

  • MSU: Danielle Whittaker (djwhitta at msu dot edu)
  • NC A&T: Yolanda Baker (ysbaker at ncat dot edu)
  • UI: Rose Poulin (rpoulin at uidaho dot edu)
  • UT: Laurie Alvarez (LaurieA at austin dot utexas dot edu)
  • UW: Katie Dickenson (katiejd8 at uw dot edu)

If you have any questions, please contact BEACON Managing Director Danielle Whittaker (


New: Mini-Sabbaticals for Students and Postdocs!

As part of the BEACON student/postdoc group objective of bridging the gap between partner institutions, the group has set up a mini-sabbatical program through BEACON. Undergrads, grad students, and postdocs can apply for up to $1,000 in funding to visit, and hopefully start or extend collaborations with other BEACON labs. This money can be used to support an entire short trip, or supplement a longer visit with funds from your home lab or the lab you’re visiting (talk to your PI and the PI at the partner institution, and then with Luis Zaman if you want to look into the possibility of extra funding for longer visits).

We are really excited for this program and hope to eventually have a constant flow of members between universities. Initially, the group has funding between now and August 15th, 2012 for three or four awards. August 15th is the end of a funding cycle, and after that we will evaluate the program and decide how much funding to put towards it in the future.

If you are interested, send Luis Zaman ( a short application with your information, the school and lab you wish to visit, and a paragraph describing your goals while there. The organizational committee will review applications and award them on a rolling basis. If you’re interested but don’t think you would be able to travel before August 15th, please contact Luis so we can make better decisions for the next funding cycle.


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