Professional Development Grants

GWISE offers a Professional Development Grant (PDG) program to help our members benefit from professional development opportunities in the Boston area and beyond. The PDG Program will provide funding for registration fees and other expenses associated with participating in professional development events.


Who is eligible to apply for a PDG?

The PDG Program is open to active members of the GWISE and WISEguys community. Priority will be given to those who have attended a minimum of 2 GWISE events in the past calendar year (not applicable for students in their first semester at Boston University). Check out past recipients of PDGs!

What type of professional development opportunities would be supported?

GWISE will fund a range of opportunities, including (but not limited to) workshops, networking events, memberships in professional societies, and professional conferences (not related to research). For example, MASS AWIS, WEST, and MassBio all hold events in the Boston area that might be of interest to graduate students and AAAS holds online career development workshops.  Please be aware that grants are not intended for travel to scientific meetings related to your research. Other avenues are available for such funding, and GWISE’s goal is to fill an otherwise unmet need for professional development. If you are attending a conference or all-day workshop during the work week, please be sure to clear it with your advisor.

How many grants are available and how much do they cover?

GWISE will award PDGs on a tiered basis to support a variety of professional development opportunities. Grants are awarded at various monetary values up to $350, with priority to applications requesting up to $100.

More grants may become available according to demand and budget considerations.

When are the application deadlines?

Applications can now be submitted on a rolling basis throughout the academic year (Sept – May).  Applications are reviewed weekly.

How many times can I apply?

GWISE wants to benefit as many members as possible, so each member will be awarded no more than one PDG each academic year. If you are unsuccessful in a given cycle, you are eligible to apply again during that academic year.

If you have already been awarded a PDG through GWISE, you may be eligible to apply for a scholarship to attend an event through the Office of the Provost for Graduate Affair’s PDG.

How do I apply?

Apply online using this application form. You will be notified within one week whether or not you will receive an award.

What happens after I am awarded a PDG?

Once you receive the grant, register for the opportunity via the host organization’s system. GWISE will reimburse you following the event. Be sure to attend the event–GWISE will NOT reimburse you for events you do not attend! Following the event, you must submit your receipts or proof of registration to GWISE for reimbursement. We also require that grantees send us a write-up of the event to be posted as a blog post on the GWISE website so that you can share what you learned with the GWISE community. Your reimbursement will not be processed until we receive your receipts and write-up.

I have a question that hasn’t been answered.

Please contact Dora Balog at with any other questions about PDGs.