Academic Staff Professional Development Grants

About the program

The Language Institute is very pleased to announce the 2020-21 grant program to support professional development activities by academic staff in Van Hise departments of languages, literatures, and cultures.

The grant is intended to support professional development activities that align with the mission of the Language Institute.

Application deadlines                                

5:00 pm, October 1, 2020
5:00 pm, February 15, 2021

Dates and anticipated awards

Activities must take place between September 1, 2020-December 31, 2021. Anticipated awards are for up to $750 each.


Applicants must be academic staff (i.e., with titles such as Faculty Associate, Lecturer, Advisor, Administrative Program Specialist, or Student Services Coordinator) who hold at least a 33% appointment in one the following departments in 2020-21:

  • African Cultural Studies
  • Asian Languages and Cultures
  • Classical and Ancient Near Eastern Studies
  • French & Italian
  • German, Nordic, and Slavic
  • Language Institute
  • Language Sciences Program
  • L&S Learning Support Services
  • Spanish & Portuguese

Graduate Teaching Assistants and visiting scholars are not eligible for this grant program.

Supported activities and allowable expenses

This grant is intended to support academic staff professional development, broadly defined, that aligns with the mission of the Language Institute. Possible professional development activities, which could be related to teaching, research, or other aspects of your position, might include:

  • Conference or research travel (allowable expenses include airfare/mileage, lodging, meals, conference registration). Important! If travel is restricted in 2020-21, the grant can still be used to support participation in virtual conferences or workshops.
  • Professional development workshops or institutes (allowable expenses include airfare/mileage, lodging, meals, workshop registration)
  • Supplies for research (allowable expenses include books and software; the grant is not intended to purchase computer hardware or office supplies)
  • Student hourly support for research

The grant does not support academic staff salary or enrollment in credit-bearing courses.

Applicants should use the budget template to prepare and submit their budget, following the guidelines in the template.  Individuals applying for the grant are strongly encouraged to make an appointment to meet with Language Institute accountant Skender Jahiu for a review of their proposed budget before submitting it with an application.

Evaluation criteria

Applications will be reviewed by a committee as soon as possible after each application deadline. The committee will consider the following in reviewing applications and making decisions on awards:

  • Relevance of the activity to the individual’s position and to the mission of the Language Institute
  • For conferences, active participation in the conference (e.g., by giving a paper)
  • Need for professional development support (with priority consideration given to proposals from academic staff that have no other forms of funding for professional development activities and who did not receive this grant in the previous year)
  • Potential for impact (for your work, your program, and/or the university)
  • Overall quality of the application   

Campus academic staff professional development grant

Recipients of Language Institute grants can use their award as matching funds for the campus-wide Academic Staff Professional Development Grant, if their activity meets the campus program’s criteria.

Detailed information about the Academic Staff Professional Development Grant is here.


Questions about this Language Institute Grant? Contact Jana Martin:, 890-4585.


Funding for this program is from the International Division and the Language Institute.

Apply Now

Spring 2020 Grant Recipients

Adeola Agoke, Department of African Cultural Studies, to participate in the 2020 National Council of Less Commonly Taught Languages (NCOLCTL) Conference

Nâlân Erbil-Erkan, Department of German, Nordic, and Slavic, to participate in the 2020 Middle Eastern Studies Association (MESA) Conference

Vanessa Schmitz-Siebertz, Department of Classical and Ancient Near Eastern Languages, to participate in the 2020 Wisconsin Association for Language Teachers (WAFLT) Conference