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Funding & Reimbursement Opportunities for MA and PhD Students

As a graduate student engaged in an academic and professional community that goes beyond the confines of the English department and Stony Brook University, you should keep in mind what funding and reimbursement options are available to you. Below is a list of the organizations and funds designated to help financially as you take part in professionalizing events, such as graduate and national conferences, off-campus seminars and workshops, etc.

Department Graduate Student Travel Fund

What can the department reimburse me for?

Every year, the English department allocates a portion of its funds to supporting student academic and professional development. The department will reimburse any expenses related to traveling, lodging, registering for conferences, workshops/seminars, etc.

How do I request reimbursement? What forms do I need to submit?

Because departmental allocation for traveling to conferences is limited, the process functions on a pre-application basis (completed through a Google form sent out by the GPD), after which the department awards a specific amount to a group of graduate students. The call is typically sent out in mid-October with a rolling deadline for applications. If awarded funding, you will be contacted by the department with the next steps and necessary forms. 


Graduate English Society (GES)

Every year, the Graduate English Society allocates a portion of its budget to covering expenses related to graduate student professionalization. This fund is available to all MA and PhD studentsand covers a wide range of activities/expenses.

What can the GES reimburse me for?

The GES will reimburse you for any academic and professionalizing activities. These include registration fees for graduate or national conferences, transportation, lodging - essentially, any expense that can be justified as part of your academic development. Please keep in mind GES funding will be divided evenly based on the total number of students applying.

How do I request reimbursement? What forms do I need to submit?

For GES reimbursement, you should submit this form and original receipts to the current GES treasurer. For any and all forms of reimbursement, you must keep itemized receipts of all expenses. You will be asked to submit the originals, but you should also keep a copy of any receipts or paperwork for your records.

Is there a deadline for submitting my request?

The GES professionalization funding line is divided evenly between semesters. Please submit Fall requests no later than December 1 and Spring requests no later than May 1. All forms and receipts should be submitted to the current GES treasurer.


Graduate Student Organization (GSO)

The Graduate Student Organization provides several reimbursement options, depending on the type of activity you take part in. 

What can the GSO reimburse me for?

Like the GES, the GSO will reimburse you for any expenses related to your academic and professional development. This includes transportation and lodging when traveling to conferences, but also academic workshops and seminars in New York City. In addition, the GSO will provide partial reimbursement for cultural events (concerts, museums, plays, musicals, etc.) and fitness classes (including gym memberships, yoga and dance studios, etc.).

  • Resource Access Project (RAP)
    The RAP provides travel grants to graduate students presenting at out-of-state scholarly conferences and/or workshops.   
  • Distinguished Travel Award
    The Distinguished Travel Award (DTA) is a special line of funding designated to support graduate students who present their work at prestigious conferences, performances and professional meetings that will contribute to and build the national and international reputation of their department and the University. Students may receive this award only once during their academic careers at Stony Brook University. 
  • Seminar/Workshop Travel
    Graduate students attending an academic workshop or seminar in New York City can qualify for a reimbursement of travel costs. Reimbursement is limited to four times per semester, with the maximum amount equal to the cost of a pre-board round-trip peak ticket from Stony Brook to Penn Station. 
  • Recreation - Fitness
    Students may apply for partial reimbursements for fitness classes and memberships (including gym memberships, yoga and dance studios, etc.).   
  • Recreation - Cultural Events
    Students may be reimbursed for artistic and cultural events including, but not limited to plays, musicals, dance performances, art museums, Staller Center Events, concerts, etc. 

How do I request reimbursement? What forms do I need to submit?

To request reimbursement from the GSO, you must submit the following documents:

  • The correct application form (see forms on the GSO funding website)
  • Proof of presentation (conference program, exhibition/workshop advertisement)
  • Original receipts for eligible expenses
  • Itemized list of expenses
  • W-9 form (for domestic students) or W-8BEN form (for international students)

All materials should be submitted to the GSO office in SAC 227. Remember to make a copy of this packet for your records.

Is there a deadline for submitting my request?

All applications for reimbursement must be submitted before the end of the current fiscal year, which is June 30. The GSO fiscal year is July 1 to June 30 of the next year. Reimbursement awards may be granted only once per fiscal year.

Note: GSO reimbursement functions on a first come, first served basis. This means that if you’re applying for reimbursement late in the fiscal year, you may not be reimbursed in full or at all.

For more information regarding these and other GSO funding and reimbursement options, see their website or contact the GSO treasurer at


GSEU Professional Development Funds (PDF)

The GSEU Professional Development Fund (PDF) is a funding pool for professional development secured by the Graduate Student Employees Union via a collective bargaining agreement with New York State. Each period GSEU members can apply for a maximum award of $1,000 per person. The PDF award is non-competitive. Everyone who applies with the correct information and application will be accepted, though the amount awarded will sometimes depend on the number of accepted applicants.

Note: You must be a GSEU member to apply for PDF reimbursement. Only TAs and GAs are eligible to become GSEU members. 

What can the GSEU reimburse me for?

Just like the other funding options, the GSEU will reimburse any expenses you incur in professionalization activities (attending conferences and workshops, grant proposal development, traveling related to your research, etc.).

How do I request reimbursement? What forms do I need to submit?

To receive reimbursement from the GSEU, you must complete this application and submit it along with the following documents:

  • An updated CV
  • Digitized copies of your receipts
  • An itemized budget of your award request (to be completed in the form above), including a total amount request (please list any other sources of funding you’ve received, such as GSO or departmental funds)

A sample of the GSEU application can be found here, along with the some of the required attachments.

All materials should be submitted electronically to You should keep hard/electronic copies of these materials for your records.

Is there a deadline for submitting my request?

For more information about the award and to check current deadlines, visit the GSEU page linked below.

Note: You do not have to wait until you’ve returned from the event to apply for reimbursement. If you have an estimation of your budget and receipts or even evidence of prices for travel and lodging reservations, you can send in your application before the event takes place.

For more information about eligibility to PDF and the application process, visit the GSEU page.