Professional Opportunities Development Funding

Due to staffing shortages, we estimate it will take 8-10 weeks to hear whether your grant was accepted. Please plan accordingly.

GPSC POD Grants have the following deadlines for the academic year 2022-2023.

September Round:   Application opens August 1st, closes September 1st

November Round:    Application opens November 1st, closes December 1st

February Round:      Application opens February 1st, closes March 1st

April Round:             Application opens April 1st, closes May 1st

Please read ALL of the sections below and the POD Grant Evaluation Rubric before you apply. Questions may be directed to the GPSC Grants Office at​ 

To complete your grant application, you will be directed to Submittable, a third-party grant management application. By continuing with this application, you agree to provide your student information to Submittable. Please log-in with your UA email ( account

We strongly recommend that applicants save their work on a separate document (Word or Google doc) to ensure nothing is lost. If an error does occur, please contact the Submittable Technical Support team at as soon as possible.​



Last updated: 10/2022

GPSC POD Grants are intended to help fund future events or initiatives advancing the professional development of graduate and professional students at the UA. Funding is for professional development initiatives including, but not limited to, academic seminars, conferences, meetings with industry representatives, etc., occurring at the University of Arizona. Any group of at least three graduate and/or professional students can apply to the GPSC for funding to support a future event they are directly involved in planning. The maximum award for POD Funding is $1,500 per application to be used within six (6) months of receiving funding.

Events may be advertised on the GPSC calendar upon request.

Below is a list of allowable costs. Any item purchased with the grant belongs to your department. The list is not exhaustive. Please contact if you have any questions regarding the allowance/prohibition of items not on the below list. 

  • Food and drinks 
  • Flyers and/or printing costs
  • Speaker honorariums
  • Travel expenses for speakers*
  • Room reservations
  • Carpool services

*Any funding requested for lodging and meals cannot exceed rates listed in the FSO Meals/Lodging Cost Index

Applicants may only submit one application per round and are only eligible to receive one POD Grant per academic year.

GPSC may fund politically oriented or religious organizations solely for non-partisan/non-political/non-religious programs, services, or special events deemed beneficial to the student body by the GPSC Appropriations Committee. GPSC funds only secular, non-sectarian activities. 


Our organization is made up of both graduate students and undergraduates. Are we eligible to apply?

  • As long as the POD Grant proposal is submitted by at least three graduate and/or professional students, your organization can receive a POD grant.

Are expenses made before the award date eligible for reimbursement?

  • Please reach out to us at if your organization has reimbursement expenses. For POD grants, we can often accommodate these requests.

    Prohibited Items:

    • Alcoholic beverages
    • Philanthropic events  
    • Mailings for organizational minutes 
    • Awards, trophies, gifts, and gift cards 
    • Entertainment not open to the entire student population 
    • Reimbursement for a service charge (e.g. monthly phone bill, cable TV charge).

    Activities that could otherwise be funded through another GPSC funding program (Travel or Research and Project (ReaP) Grants) will not be considered for a Professional Opportunities Development Grant.

      All required materials must be submitted to the online portal by 11:59 PM Arizona Time on the deadline. An automated submission confirmation email is generated once an online application is submitted. If you do not receive a confirmation email, please get in touch with Submittable at

      Please do not include your name in the travel narrative, budget, or other uploaded documents (price quotes, IRB approval, etc.) to preserve the standards of double-blind reviewing.

      Faculty statements of support are due on the same day and time as the applications! In your application, you can enter your faculty supporter's email. Once you submit, it will generate an email from Submittable, which will provide your faculty supporter with a link to upload their statement of support. If you don't submit your application until 11:50 pm the day before the deadline, your faculty supporter may not see their upload link in time to provide you with a letter.

      • While not having a letter of support does not immediately disqualify you, it may affect your total score. So, please plan accordingly!

      Please advise your faculty recommender to submit a letter addressing: 1) the event's impact on professional development, 2) the feasibility of executing the proposed event, and 3) the necessity and relevance of the proposed budget items. To maintain standards of double-blind reviewing, we ask that they not include your name in the file name or the letter of support.


      I do not see the POD Grant application when I click the “Online Application” button on this website.

      • The application may not be open yet. Please check the application opening and closing dates listed above. If the application should be open at this time, please email us at

      I am having trouble submitting my application online. Can I submit my application materials via email?

      • No, we can only accept application materials via online application. If you are experiencing issues, please contact Submittable at

        • The number of awards per round is contingent upon the availability of funds and the number of applications received. The GPSC ReaP Grant is competitive and is not a guaranteed funding source. 
        • Applications are reviewed by graduate students from various disciplines. After the judges submit their evaluation scores, a cutoff score is generated based on the number of applications and funds available. 
        • For information regarding the necessary components of a POD Grant application and the criteria used by judges to evaluate POD grant applications, please refer to the GPSC POD Grant Evaluation Rubric.

        • Evaluation of applications takes approximately 4-6 weeks.  Applicants will be notified via email when their application status changes (Accepted, Declined, etc.). You may also check your online application portal for updates on your status.  If awarded a POD grant, the applicant will be asked to accept or decline the award.

        • POD awards are typically processed through the applicants’ academic department business office but can be disbursed as a stipend to the primary applicant upon request. To access POD funds after June 15th, 2023, awards must be disbursed as a stipend to the primary applicant. Any unspent funds by this date are rescinded and cannot be reprocessed. Stipends are considered taxable income and may affect financial aid status. Operational advances and outstanding purchase orders must be settled by the June 15th deadline as well.

        • Applicants who were not awarded are encouraged to reapply during subsequent rounds, provided that all eligibility criteria are met (see the “Eligibility” section above).
        • It is the responsibility of the individual or the organization to ensure that allocated funds are spent per University of Arizona and Arizona Board of Regents (ABOR) policies and any other policies the recipient is expected to comply with, including institutional approvals if applicable (i.e. IRB, IACUC)

        • If you are awarded a POD Grant but would like to decline your award, please notify the Grants Office at immediately for instructions on how to return unused funds. 
        • If your project is canceled for reasons beyond your control, but you have already incurred non-refundable charges, GPSC will not require you to return that portion of the grant. Please complete your Post-Award Report to document the expenses which could not be refunded.
        • Funds may only be used for the purpose(s) approved by the GPSC. However, awarded applicants may request to reallocate funds. To submit a reallocation request, please email, and a form will be assigned to you to complete. Reallocation requests may take several weeks to review.
        • If the final cost of an approved item is more than the budgeted amount, the GPSC will not pay the difference.
        • If less than 90% of awarded GPSC funds are used, then that student will be required to reimburse the University of Arizona for the unspent funds. Please notify us of your unused funds at

        • POD Grant awardees are required to submit a Post-Award Report within six months of the award date. Failure to meet these reporting requirements affects your eligibility for future GPSC funding.
        • The Post-Award Report will be assigned to awardees and completed entirely through the Submittable platform. When you log in and click your accepted grant application, you will see the post-award report under the tab labeled "Forms." Required components include 1) an experience narrative (500-word limit) and 2) verification that all other award conditions have been met.
        • All purchase receipts will be submitted upon event/initiative completion if requested by the Grants Office.
        • Awardees must spend at least 90% of their award. If less than 90% of awarded GPSC funds are used, then that student will be required to reimburse the University of Arizona for the unspent funds. Please notify us of your unused funds at
        • Awarded applicants must acknowledge GPSC on all publicity, presentations, posters, and publications regarding the event or initiative. The GPSC logo will be provided for use if funding is awarded.

          • Each grant application is evaluated by 2-3 volunteer graduate and professional students.  

          • Serving as a judge is a requirement for receiving an award (you will be a judge the following round of getting accepted). However, you don't need to receive a grant to be a judge. 

          • Any graduate or professional student may volunteer to serve as a judge. Serving as a Grants Judge allows you to obtain an insider's perspective on the evaluation process. Other reasons include the following:

            • Formulate a more competitive application by reviewing applications

            • Service experience for your CV or resume

            • Learn an evaluation process similar to major granting agencies (NSF/NIH/NEH) 

          PLEASE NOTE: You may not serve as a Judge for the ReaP Grants in the same round you applied. You may, however, be assigned applications for a different grant (Travel or POD). Please notify us if you have submitted an application and would also like to serve as a judge that round. 

          GPSC takes our responsibility seriously to maintain confidentiality. 

          Measures to Ensure Confidentiality:

          • GPSC policy directs applicants not to include personal identifiers in their application documents.
          • Application information shall only be used for evaluation purposes unless disclosure is mandated by University Policy or applicable law.
          • Applicants may not contact student reviewers/ judges.

          Before reviewing grant applications, every individual must sign a Confidentiality and Non – Disclosure Rules form [Click here for Confidential Agreement]. GPSC is not liable for the intentional breach of confidentiality by reviewers.

          GPSC uses a third-party platform, Submittable, for Grants application, submission, and management.

          GPSC is not liable for third-party security breaches and hacking of our emails, computers, cloud, and servers.

            Thank you to our supporters!

            POD grants are made possible by funds provided by the GPSC, the Graduate College, and Student Fees. Thank you to all of our partners for their meaningful contributions to graduate and professional student advancement.