Department Funds for Professional Travel

The department has regular travel fund application deadlines twice a year. Highest priority will be given to graduate students in good academic standing within the department, and who meet all of the following criteria:

  1. They have a paper presentation, for which they are the sole or first author, accepted at an academic conference outside of the State of Hawaiʻi, which they plan to attend. Some exceptions to paper presentations can be made in extraordinary cases, but students must show how attendance reflects a similar level of achievement and professional benefit.
  2. They have not received travel funds from the department previously.
  3. The conference is of high relevance to the student’s academic and professional development. *
  4. They have already applied or are committed to applying to sources outside the department for travel funding. **

* While the criteria for high relevance are not set in stone, conferences that meet such criteria include the ASA or other major national sociology associations, ASA regional sub-bodies (e.g. PSA) and sections, and leading organizations in a subfield of sociology or an interdisciplinary field related to sociology (e.g. AAS, SSSP). Other conferences are definitely not ruled out, but students must make a case for why it will be comparably valuable in terms of intellectual and professional opportunities.

** The most common source of funding for student conference travel from outside the department is the Graduate Student Organization. Other sources of funding within the University include the College of Social Sciences Travel Funds, funds administered by the Graduate Division’s Graduate Fellowships & Scholarships Office, and various scholarships offered through the STAR System. Outside UH, conference organizers will often offer competitive scholarships for graduate students. Other possible sources include honor societies like Alpha Kappa Delta, or grant travel money available to students working as Graduate Research Assistants. In general, the department will not allow students to claim funds for the same trip from the department and other UH sources.


Students interested in applying for department travel funds should turn in the following information:

  1. Name, date, and site of the conference, website URL if available, and the deadline for conference registration.
  2. Evidence of acceptance of a presentation(s) to the conference in question, such as a formal acceptance letter or listing of paper on the preliminary program.
  3. Title and abstract of the paper(s) to be presented, with all authors listed in the same order as in the conference submission, as well as information on the nature of the presentation (paper panel, roundtable, poster session, etc.).
  4. A short essay describing the full nature of student participation in the conference, the significance of the conference, and how it will impact academic and professional development. Include relevant documentation, if any, from conference information materials.
  5. A statement listing all past academic travel and sources of funding, as well as additional evidence of attempts to obtain travel funds from outside the department

Additional Notes:

  • Students may attach additional documentation regarding the conference or their own work which they think may be relevant to the
  • Awards made will be disbursed to students after they return from their travel, and students will be expected to provide receipts for claimed travel expenses.
  • Students are expected to inform the department of any non-departmental funding that they have available to offset expenses for the trip.