Virginia Tech®home

International Travel Supplemental Grants

About the Program

This program supports faculty travel for the purposes of participation at international conferences. This program is administered through the Office of the Vice President for Research and Innovation (OVPRI).  Contact Alicia Houchins at or 231-0623 .

Awards up to $1,000 are made to supplement funding from the applicant's home academic/research unit.


These GUIDELINES are effective August 1, 2012, and supersede all previous versions.

The International Travel Supplemental Grants (ITSG) Program supports faculty travel for the purposes of participation at international conferences.

This program is administered through the Office of Vice President for Research and Innovation. Awards up to $1,000 are made to supplement funding from the applicant's home academic/research unit. Funding is awarded subject to the following terms and conditions. Reduced funding will apply if the applicant received ITSG funding in the prior fiscal year.

Proposals are only accepted from tenured, tenure-track faculty, or certain categories of research faculty as defined in the Faculty Handbook. Specific research faculty categories that are eligible for ITSG funds include:

  • Research Professor
  • Research Associate Professor
  • Research Assistant Professor
  • Project Director
  • Senior Research Scientist
  • Research Scientist

The following appointments are not eligible for funding from this program:

  • Instructors
  • Research Faculty Outside the Categories Listed Above
  • Adjunct Faculty
  • Faculty on Leave - funding is not provided for travel to or from faculty leave situations or for activities during leave periods. This applies to all types of leave situations except sabbaticals. Request for funding during sabbatical situations will be considered.
  • Students

This program only supports travel outside of the United States. Domestic travel, including travel to Hawaii, Puerto Rico, and the Virgin Islands, is not supported.

  1. Conference Activity
    Support is intended to promote participation in significant international meetings, as compared to invited lectures at regional meetings (where most speakers and attendees are local), workshops, or university symposia.

    The applicant's conference activity, for which documentation is required, must be clearly indicated.Examples of eligible activities in the conference setting include: presentation of an invited paper, lecture, poster, or keynote address. Activity associated with conference planning is, in itself, insufficient.Because of the nature of professional activities in the performing arts, exceptions may be considered for these disciplines.

    Other activities (e.g., conferring with colleagues, field research, faculty/student recruitment) may be described in the final report, but need not be mentioned in the application, as its focus is conference activity.

    The following activities are not supported:research and field trips, equipment purchases, invited lecture tours, invited lectures at regional meetings, workshop participation or presentations, exchange programs, faculty and student recruitment, chairing a conference session (where presentation of a paper is not involved), travel of multiple authors, and attendance at more than one conference during the fiscal year (see below).

  2. Multiple program awards
    Awards are limited to one per fiscal year.Requesters with the opportunity to attend several meetings in the course of the fiscal year can only expect this program to support travel to one of those meetings. That is, when an award is granted for a conference that ends in a particular fiscal year (between July 1 and the following June 30), requests by the awardee to support travel to another conference ending in that same fiscal year will not be considered. Consideration is based on the end-of-conference date, not the submission or review date.
  1. Obtaining Guidelines and Form
  2. Application Form – The most recent application form available on this webpage is required and all areas of the form must be completely filled out.
    1. Budget Section — The budget section indicates anticipated expenses and cost-sharing commitments by university units.
    2. Signatures — Endorsements from the designated college and department representatives confirm that the administrators have reviewed the proposal and agree to provide the stated contribution.The signature from both college and department are required even if financial support is not provided. The requester signs to indicate acceptance of terms and conditions of the program. All signatures on the application must include the date signed.
    3. Documentation – Copies of all documentation must be provided either via email ( or campus mail (MC 0244). Program administrator will not be responsible for searching the conference website for the required information.

      Travel for Conference Attendance:

      Scope of the conference — Any documentation supporting the claim that the conference in question meets the program requirements should be submitted. This might be a call for papers, conference brochure, or a paragraph written to indicate the number and nationality of speakers/attendees.

      Acceptance of papers — Invitations alone are not considered to be sufficient documentation. Some official (conference) recognition of the requester's participation must be presented. E-mail or fax confirmation is acceptable, and submission of an advance copy of the program is sufficient.

  3. Proposal Submission
    Requests may be submitted at any time from six months up to 30 days prior to the traveler's departure date. These time constraints will be firmly held. The proposal should be submitted to: ITSG Program Administrator, c/o Office of the Vice President for Research and Innovation, 301 Burruss Hall, Mail Code 0244.
    Requests submitted less than 30 days prior to the departure date will beconsidered at the discretion of the administrator and will not be permitted except under very unusual circumstances. Retroactive requests (made during or after the conference/travel period) will not be considered. Note: If College and/or Department signatures cannot be obtained before the submission deadline, the application should be submitted without signatures or signed by a substitute, with matching funds, indicated as soon as possible.
  4. Administrative Review
    Proposals will be reviewed by the Associate Vice President for Research Programs.
  1. Announcement
    Decisions concerning proposals will be announced as soon as possible after receipt of the proposal by the program administrator. Notification of award will be sent by e-mail to the requester, with copies to the appropriate college dean and department head. If bookkeepers need this information please add their email addresses to the application.
  2. Reimbursement
    Upon completion of travel, awardees should request reimbursement for total travel expenses through the use of a travel reimbursement voucher.  The travel reimbursement should be charged to the faculty member’s departmental fund in accordance with university policy.  Please note that an international travel approval form is required.  For assistance, travelers should consult their departmental bookkeepers.

    To receive the award, a copy of the travel reimbursement voucher and the final report should be submitted to Alicia Houchins (, MC 0244) in the Office of the Vice President for Research and Innovation no later than 60 days from the activity (end-of-conference) date.  Report requirements are discussed in a separate section below.  Awards will be made via a budget transfer to the traveler’s departmental overhead fund upon receipt and approval of the documentation.  Please include the overhead fund number that should receive the award when the documents are submitted.
    Individual awards will revert to the central program if reimbursement requests are not made within the required timeline.  Extensions will be awarded only under the most unusual circumstances.
  3. Restricted Use of the Award
    Grant awards are proposal-specific and may not be transferred to another activity or individual. This is a faculty development program; graduate students may not use monies awarded to their advisors.
  4. Returned Awards
    It is the responsibility of the recipient to notify the program administrator if an award cannot be used as anticipated.Should an awardee be unable to use an award for the requested purpose, the award will revert to the program.The requester may not assume an award can be used at a later date if the conference is postponed or canceled. In that case, the requester must apply for a new award.

A report of no more than one page must be submitted to the program administrator within 60 days of the end-of-conference as indicated on the award notification. It may be e-mailed (, faxed, or sent as hard copy to the program administrator (0244), with copies to the department head and college dean. It should explain how this opportunity contributed to the goals of this program. Applications for future ITSG support will not be considered until the final report is received. Awardee feedback allows the program administrator to monitor the program's effectiveness.

Frequently asked questions about this program:

  • My department and college have no money to support my request. Am I eligible to receive funding?
    This is a supplemental program, and rather than fund the bulk of a traveler’s expenses, awards are intended to leverage support from other sources, one of which must be an academic or research unit. The contribution may be modest, but is required as evidence that the department head/college dean/institute director acknowledges the significance of the activity.
  • If I've received previous funding from this program, am I eligible for further awards? Yes, as long as you limit requests for support to one conference per fiscal year. However, funding will be reduced if you have received ITSG support the previous fiscal year.
  • Won't I have a better chance of being funded if I submit my request early in the fiscal year? No, applications will not be accepted prior to six months in advance of the proposed travel.
  • Conference activity is important for the professional development of my student; why can't my award be shared with him/her? Support for students is provided by the Graduate Student Assembly. For details on the GSA Travel Fund, consult the GSA Home Page and select "Travel Fund Program (TFP)" under "What We Do", or call 231-7919.
  • I am an instructor/adjunct professor/research associate. International conference activity is necessary for my professional development - why can't I apply? While this fact is acknowledged, limited program resources necessitate limiting participation.
  • Due to civil unrest/natural disaster, my conference was canceled/re-scheduled. May I apply my award to another conference where I am giving an invited paper? An award is valid only for the activity and period specified in the proposal. You must contact the program administrator to discuss your situation; depending on the time frame involved, you may be asked to submit a new request.

Program Administrator:
Further information may be obtained by calling 231-0623, or sending an e-mail to Alicia Houchins.