Section 1 – Grant Descriptions

The EGSA Professionalization Fund seeds three types of grants to be distributed on a yearly basis. Listed below are general descriptions of each of the types of grants offered.

  • Job Market Grants offset the costs of entering or re-entering the professional or academic job market. Acceptable uses of the grant are limited to travel expenses for job interviews or campus visits. Any appropriate travel that occurs during the academic year of application will be considered (i.e., Fall 2010, Winter 2011, or Summer 2011). Grants will be awarded up to $200 each.
  • Conference Travel Grants reimburse members for travel costs related to academic or professional work in two categories:

◦     (1) Conference presentation or participation, which includes activities such as presenting a paper, reading a creative work, participating in a creative writing workshop, chairing a panel, or chairing a special interest group;

◦     (2) Conference attendance, which includes attending the conference but not participating in any official way.

The conference travel grants are meant to supplement the existing on-campus sources for graduate student conference travel funding (GSA, GPC, CAH, Graduate School). Conference presentation or participation travel grants will be awarded up to $200 each, and conference attendance travel grants will be awarded up to $100 each.

  • Postage Reimbursement Grants offset mailing costs for job application materials, including costs related to dossier services like Interfolio, and/or for creative/critical works (manuscripts, essays, articles, poetry, etc.). Application and contest fees will also be considered eligible for reimbursement under this grant. Grants will be awarded up to $200 each.

Section 2 – Grant Restrictions and Flexibilities

Graduate students who meet the eligibility requirements (see Article II, Part III) may apply for up to $200 in professionalization grants per semester. A grant application may include requests for monies falling in more than one category (e.g., for both travel and professionalization funds), so long as the total amount of the request is $200 or less.

The EGSA Professionalization Fund Committee retains the right to change the grant award amount depending on the circumstances of each year. The number of grants available may also vary depending on the amount of money raised during the fall semester fundraiser.

Article II – Eligibility Guidelines

The following people are eligible to receive an EGSA Professionalization Grant: MU EGSA members* who have displayed active participation in EGSA meetings, activities, and events. Active participation can include but is not limited to:

  • regularly attending the monthly EGSA meetings
  • serving and maintaining one's duties as an EGSA:

◦     committee representative

◦     chair (elected or appointed)

◦     officer

  • contributing time/labor to EGSA-sponsored events (e.g. volunteering at EGSA fundraisers, organizing EGSA happy hours, setting up for the EGSA-selected speaker, and the like).

*Note: All graduate students currently enrolled in the department of English are members of EGSA.

All criteria pertinent to any one application are measured holistically,  not individually. The Professionalization Fund Committee will subjectively weigh the applicant's participation and any schedule constraints alongside the prioritizing criteria listed in Article IV. Only expenses incurred during the academic semester of application will be considered. Therefore, students should apply as early as possible.

Article III – Application Process:

All applicants must submit the following materials to be considered for funding:

    **Note: Additional application requirements are listed by grant type. (See sections 1-3 below.)


Applicants should use EGSA’s “Itemized Funding Letter” template  addressed to the EGSA Professionalization Fund Committee (aka The Executive Board), specifying the type of grant requested, his or her need for the grant money, how the funds will be used, how the applicant attempted to procure the most economical expenses possible, and any other relevant financial information. Click Here to Access: Itemized_Funding_Letter_Template


An applicant's eligibility for financial reward is in part contingent upon his or her good standing as an engaged EGSA member. As such, this letter should explain:

◦     how the applicant has served as an active participant in and contributor to EGSA meetings, activities, and events.

◦     any barriers to the applicant's ability to participate in EGSA meetings, activities, and events as actively and/or regularly as possible.

Applications are due to the Professionalization Fund Committee by December 1, May 1, or September 1, depending on semester of travel. Copies of the application, including supporting documents, should be placed in the EGSA Treasurer’s mailbox by the appropriate date. Incomplete applications will not be considered.

Any questions regarding the application guidelines or requirements should be directed to the EGSA Treasurer.

Section 1 – Job Market Grants

Documentation verifying travel should be attached to the letter, including (but not limited to) the following:

·         a paper copy of the email or letter from the institution/company, in which the institution/company requests an interview or campus visit with the applicant

·         a paper copy of the email or letter from the applicant to the institution/company affirming that he or she has agreed to travel to be interviewed and/or visit the institution.

·         any appropriate travel documentation (i.e., paper copies of flight reservations and/or hotel reservations, and/or gas receipts for post-dated travel).

Section 2 – Conference Travel Grants

Receipts – air, car, hotel, registration – must be submitted with the application letter along with the following:

·         a statement of intent – of no more than 2 pp. double-spaced – that discusses:

◦     The importance of the conference to you personally and professionally.

◦     The specific reason you have for attending the conference

◦     For Presenters: How/why the content of your presentation and your experience of presenting contributed to your professional goals


◦     For Attendees (i.e. non-presenters): How/why a particular conference presentation significantly affected your professional goals

·         a conference program OR copies of relevant pages from the conference program, indicating the way(s) in which you participated

·         an abstract or description of the piece presented (if relevant) OR an explanation of how attending the conference will enhance your professional profile, even though you did not present or appear on the program in another way

·         a list of the other organizations from whom you have requested funding, including status (pending, denied, accepted $x)

Section 3 – Postage Reimbursement Grants

Original postal receipts accompanied by a document indicating title of piece/application, recipient, date posted, applicable fees, and postage amount for each mailing. (Note: Applicants buying stamps in bulk should include the original receipt and indicate the amount or number of stamps eligible for reimbursement.)

Article IV – Decision Process and Priority

The Professionalization Fund Committee will consist of the EGSA President, the EGSA Vice President, and the EGSA Treasurer. After applications have been received, the Committee will meet by the last week of the semester to determine the grant recipients. The Committee will announce the grant recipients at the following regular EGSA meeting in order to insure such information is recorded in the EGSA minutes. By the end of the semester, the EGSA Treasurer should distribute checks to the grant recipients.

Section 1 – Application Criteria and Quality

The amount awarded is based on the quality of the application relative to the other applications. The Executive Board judges the quality of each application based on professionalism (spelling and grammar, appropriate word usage, formatting, etc.) and the completeness of the application materials as outlined in the III.iii: “Application Process.”

In addition, preference will be given in the following order to:

  • Applicants who have met the criteria of membership, meeting attendance, and appropriate grant use as documented in III.ii: “Eligibility Guidelines.”
  • Applicants who have provided valid documentation of their expenses and, when applicable, conference membership.
  • Applicants requesting funding for the first time.

◦     This pertains to:

▪     applicants requesting funding for the first time ever (who are given first priority)

▪     applicants requesting funding for the first time in an academic year (who are given priority over EGSA members who have previously received funding in the same year.)

  • Applicants who attempt to find multiple sources of funding.
  • Applicants who can document their effort to find the most economical uses of their grant money (such as cheaper lodging, minimized lengths of stay, the most affordable travel costs, etc.).
  • Applicants who attend national or international conferences.
  • Applicant seniority.

Section 2 – Decision-Making Requirements for the EGSA Executive Board

Depending on the pool of applicants and the criteria above, the Professionalization Fund Committee shall determine the type and number of awards granted in a given year.

If a member of the Professionalization Fund Committee has applied for a grant, then his or her position on the Committee will be forfeited and replaced with another member of the EGSA Executive Board. Appeals about the Committee’s decisions on grant recipients can be made to the EGSA Mediator.





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