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Grant Information

September 2021 Update: Research and Professional Development Travel Grants (with physical travel) can now be approved here, provided that the student follows the required approval process described here for Domestic Travel, and here for International Travel
1. Travel approval must be obtained prior to applying for a Research or Professional Development Grant. Students need to initiate a travel request authorizing the GSA Graduate Assistant Zane Poffenberger to prepare your travel request.  If authorization is not provided to GSA, this will nullify the grant approval. Instructions on how to submit travel approval can be seen here.
2. No Travel arrangements can be made before obtaining Travel Approval.
3. All travelers on University-related travel are required to be fully vaccinated against COVID-19 unless appropriate waiver documentation is on file with the university.

General Grant Information

The GSA has a Grants Program that provides funds for reimbursing graduate students for certain expenses incurred while engaging in professional development or thesis-related research.

In order to provide more and better opportunities for intellectual, professional, and social development, There are two types of grants available from the GSA: Professional Development Grants and Research Grants.

Professional Grants can be used for costs directly related to one’s professional development up to $750 such as: attending or presenting at the conference or event relevant to your discipline, traveling to workshops, symposiums, or internships.

Research Grants can be used to fund costs incurred through performing or conducting thesis or dissertation related research up to $1000. This includes research materials not available on campus or through other campus means, traveling to interview participants or collect data, research participant incentives, and most other things directly related to performing research.

All out-of-state and overnight in-state travel be approved prior to making any travel arrangements. Applications must be submitted at least a month before the intended grant usage date. Grant applications are due by the 15th of each month and will be reviewed by the Grants Review Panel about 1-2 weeks after the deadline. Once the GRP has approved the grants, they are sent to the OGSL Staff who will create eTravel forms as well as notify the recipients within 5 business days.

Vehicle Use and Meal Reimbursement Rates

As of January 1, 2021 and in accordance with review of the Board of Regents Policy VIII 11.10, the reimbursement rate for the use of a personal vehicle is 56 cents per mile. The meal reimbursement rate is 56 dollars per day as of September 1, 2019. Rates per meal are as follows: Breakfast $13.00, Lunch $15.00, and Dinner $28.00.

Foreign travel is reimbursed at the applicable U.S. Department of State Meal and Incidental Rate without receipts, or the actual cost with receipts.

Memorandum for record: Travel Reimbursement Rates as of January 1, 2021.

Grant Selection

Grants are awarded based on the results of a review process described in the GSA Points of Policy (see Section 8). For concerns or questions about this process, please fill out the form on the ‘Contact Us’ page on the GSA Website or email us at Please keep in mind that the application is due by the 15th of each month and will be reviewed by the Grants Review Panel who need about 1-2 weeks after the deadline to meet.


Once the panel has approved the grants, they are sent to the OGSL Staff who will create eTravel forms as well as notify the recipients within 5 business days. All eTravel forms MUST BE DONE BEFORE THE TRAVEL DATE. Keeping this in mind, please consider the grant application deadlines listed below very carefully and apply ahead of time, especially if you are traveling in the last two weeks of the month.

Grant Awards

In order to receive funding through the GSA for reimbursement of expenses, you must complete and submit the application for the grant you would like by the deadlines listed below. All graduate students enrolled in any graduate program at UMBC are eligible to apply. A minimum of 1 hour volunteer time to GSA related events is required following receipt of any GSA grant disbursement. No further grants will be awarded if this requirement is not met. If you are awarded a grant, you must completely use that grant first before applying for further grants in the future

Please note that each Grant Period spans 3 months with an overlap of one month between each period. Please read the dates carefully and apply as early as you can

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