Call for Proposals: College of Forestry Research Support Faculty Professional Development Fund

Current Proposal Deadline: November 20, 2019 by 11:00 pm

Proposal opens: November 5, 2019

Award announcement: early-December, 2019

Funds can be used to pay for events occurring between December 15, 2019 and December 31, 2020. The next call for proposals is November 1, 2020.


The purpose of this fund is to support the professional development of Research Support Faculty (RSF) in the College of Forestry to attend trainings, conferences and workshops and to develop and lead workshops that meet the goals of the individual’s professional development plan*. Individual awards will be up to $2000 each.


Who is eligible?

  • Faculty Research Assistants (and SFRA I, SFRA II)
  • Research Professional Faculty1
  • Research Associates2

1 Only Professional Faculty with job responsibilities that emphasize research are eligible. Eligibility for Research Professional Faculty is restricted to those who work to support another faculty member’s research program. Professional Faculty who lead their own research programs for more than 50% of their FTE are ineligible.

2 Research Associates on ‘postdoc’ appointments are ineligible

What types of professional development activities are covered?

  • Professional conferences
  • Trainings and workshops (technical and soft skills) 
  • Workshop development and delivery
Not eligible for this funding opportunity? Check out these other opportunities for professional development.

Use of Funds

Funds may be used to pay for:

  • Registration fees
  • Transportation
  • Lodging
  • Miscellaneous expenses (e.g. meals and parking)
  • Funds may be used to pay salary only for workshop development and delivery.
  • Note: Workshops may be carried out beyond 1.0 fte as overload, provided that they are not part of the applicant’s position description.

Professional Development Plan

Before completing the application you should have a good understanding of how your proposal links to your professional development goals. To develop a simple plan follow these directions and use the included template.

Application Procedure

Applications are accepted online only. Complete all relevant sections of the application form and follow submission instructions on the application form. Required fields are marked with an asterisk. Applicants are required to obtain support from their supervisors for attendance at the event, either by paying salary or approving leave time. If the award does not cover the full cost of the event, applicants will be asked to specify how the remaining balance will be paid.

Use the following link to fill out and submit your application: RSF Professional Development Application Form

Incomplete proposals will not be considered for funding.

Example Application

Download an example of a successful professional development grant application. Also here is an example budget and finally an example application form.

Selection Process

The RSF Committee will assess the completeness of each application including whether the applicant meets the following basic eligibility requirements:

  • Is the proposed budget complete?
  • If the applicant has previously received an award from this fund:
     Has more than one year transpired since funds were last awarded?
     Has the applicant submitted a report for the prior activity?

If the answer to any of these questions is no, the application will not receive further consideration.

All applications that meet the basic eligibility requirements will then be submitted to the Selection Committee for final selection and approval. Criteria include the following:

  • How clear is the connection to the applicant’s professional development plan?*
  • How clear is the connection to the goals of the RSF professional development fund?
  • How long has the applicant been employed in the CoF?
  • When did the applicant last attend a professional development activity?
  • When did the applicant last receive an award from this fund?

For complete evaluation criteria and scoring approach, see the RSF Professional Development Evaluation Form.

Award Procedure

Award recipients will be notified via email. At that time, recipients will be asked to provide verification of supervisor support to pay salary or approve leave time for the duration of the event. If total costs exceed the award amount, recipients will also be asked to provide an index for the additional charges incurred. Awardees will be responsible for tracking expenses paid to ensure that charges to the award index do not exceed the amount awarded.

Post-Award Report Requirements

Award recipients will be required to submit a short written report to the RSF Committee within 6 months following the event, describing the specific benefits that resulted from attending the professional development event. Individuals are not eligible to receive additional awards until reports have been submitted for all prior awards. See the RSF Professional Development Recipient Report Form.

For More Information

The full text of the proposal submitted to FEC is available at: CoF RSF Professional Development Plan Proposal. The full text of the proposal requesting an expansion of the Professional Development Fund is available at: Research Support Faculty Professional Development Fund – Enhancing Opportunities. For questions regarding the application, evaluation or reporting processes, contact the RSF Committee.