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Scholars' Travel Fund

Scholars' Travel Fund

The Scholars' Travel Fund (STF) is a Campus Research Board program designed to support the presentation of faculty members’ original scholarly research and creative work at academic gatherings (e.g., national disciplinary meetings and specialized conferences).

Please note that participation as a discussant, chair, invited lecturer at individual campuses, and research-related travel is not supported. Funding will be provided for up to three faculty members for the same presentation. Each faculty member must submit a separate application.


STF support is limited to Illinois full-time tenured or tenure-track faculty members, full-time lecturers, University High School faculty members, and Legacy Research Scholars in targeted units.

Key points:

  • Funding is not available for emeritus/ae faculty, rehired retirees or visiting appointments (i.e., visiting lecturer, visiting assistant professor, visiting research associate professor, etc.).
  • To ensure the availability of STF support for faculty who most need it, the Campus Research Board will not normally grant STF awards to applicants with ample discretionary funds (e.g., start-up funds, HASS, support associated with administrative or named faculty positions). The Campus Research Board considers $10,000 or more to be ample for assistant professors and $5,000 or more to be ample for all other applicants.  Faculty with discretionary funds above these thresholds will not normally be eligible for STF awards.
    Applicants must indicate approximate total of currently available discretionary funding including:
    A.) Funds remaining from start-up packages
    B.) Allocations from departments or other campus units that support the applicant’s research/creative activities
    C.) Funds awarded to support the applicant’s research associated with academic appointments either in administrative positions or in named faculty positions (i.e., endowed chairs or professorships).
  • Exceptions to the discretionary funds threshold policy can be made in cases of clear need and with the support of the department executive officer.  Applicants who wish to be granted an exception to the policy must provide a detailed explanation for why STF support is needed on the application. This should include a description of how all current discretionary funds are otherwise committed. Applicants must download the Executive Officer Exception Form from the online application, complete it, have the department executive officer sign it, and upload it to the application.
  • The number of trips a faculty member is eligible to receive support for during the fiscal year is dependent upon their rank. Each conference counts as one trip in the fiscal year in which the travel occurs, regardless of the submission date of the application. (The fiscal year runs from July 1 through June 30 of each year.)
  • Assistant professors are eligible to receive funding for two trips per fiscal year. One of the trips may be to a foreign destination. Foreign travel is restricted to one trip every other fiscal year. All travel outside the United States will be considered foreign travel.
  • Associate professors, professors, full-time lecturers, University High School faculty members and Legacy Research Scholars are eligible to receive funding for one trip per fiscal year. The trip may be to a domestic or foreign destination. Foreign travel is restricted to one trip every other fiscal year. All travel outside the United States will be considered foreign travel.
  • Retroactive funding will NOT be considered. The dates of travel must occur after the results release date. The release date is the second Friday after the deadline date. (e.g., deadline date of April 1, 2015; results release date of April 10, 2015.)

Program Criteria

The STF program supports Illinois faculty members in the presentation of original scholarly research and creative work at academic gatherings such as national disciplinary meetings and specialized conferences. Funding for up to three faculty members for the same presentation is available, but each faculty member must submit a separate application. Please note, the following are not supported:

  • Participation as discussant 
  • Participation as chair
  • Invited lecturer at individual campus
  • Research-related travel 

Applications must be submitted online no later than 3 p.m. on the deadline date. Results will be e-mailed to the applicants approximately two weeks after the deadline date.

Type of Support

Travel costs for domestic and international destinations are budgeted according to zones (5 for domestic, 6 for international). Rates are reviewed and periodically adjusted to account for cost increases.

All travel outside the United States is considered foreign travel. Click here for a list of the Travel Award amounts for various destinations. STF awards may be used for airfare, reimbursement of automobile mileage, conference registration fees, taxis, trains, busses, subways, business telephone calls, business expenses, toll road charges, parking charges, meals, and lodging in accordance with University and State policies. Payment of association dues cannot be supported by STF funds.

Application Deadlines

Please carefully review all eligibility and submission requirements before applying. Please note deadlines vary by program.
Submissions are due by 3:00 p.m. on the posted date. Applications submitted after the deadline will automatically be held over for the next deadline.

See Current Deadlines

Eligible Illinois faculty members must apply online.  Applicants can save the application online and return to complete it at a later time. A separate application must be submitted for each travel request.

Please note that an application will not be reviewed until it has been successfully submitted.

Questions? Email the Campus Research Board

Kelley Frazier
(217) 333-6771