How Chapters Find the Funds to Attend ACS National Meetings
BY ERIC STEWART
Have you heard? The 245th ACS National Meeting will be in New Orleans, April 7–11, 2013! While traveling to an ACS national meeting is always an amazing experience for members of student chap- ters, when you add the fun and excitement of New
Orleans to the already great networking, educational, and résumé-building opportunities at ACS national meetings, every ACS student chapter should be signing up members NOW to attend.
“Sure,” you might be saying, “attending would be a great thing
to do. But how do we pay for it?” Well, read on!
When you add it all up, there are potentially a lot of expenses
related to attending an ACS national meeting, including not only
travel, accommodations, and registration but also poster printing, incidental expenses, and more. Fortunately, there is also a
long list of possible sources of funds, not to mention a variety of
proven tips and strategies that other chapters are happy to share.
Know your sources
Everyone seems to agree on one central fact: you’ll almost certainly have to tap a variety of funding sources in order to take
some or all of your chapter members to the national meeting.
Fortunately, there are many to choose from:
FUNDRAISING— First and foremost, you and your fellow members can directly increase your ability to attend the national meeting by conducting your own fundraising activities. In speaking
with ACS student members and faculty advisors, we heard about
a wide range of ventures. In fact, the list of fundraising ideas is
limited only by your imagination.
But if you’re still looking for ideas to implement on your own
campus, be sure to read the Chapter Spotlight section of inChem-
istry magazine to learn about the many innovative ways chapters
go about raising funds from year to year. You can also check out
Allison Byrum Proffitt’s “Show Me the Money, Honey: Fund-Rais-
ing Ideas for ACS Student Chapters” in the February/March 2012
issue. Read the article online at www.acs.org/inchemistry.
ACS TRAVEL GRANTS— The ACS Undergraduate Programs Office
offers National Meeting Travel Grants to help ACS student chapters attend national meetings. Monique Wilhelm, adjunct lecturer
and chapter advisor at the University of Michigan Flint (UMF),
notes that her students get a combination of benefits from writing proposals for these grants each year. “In addition to helping
to make attending the meeting more affordable,” she notes,
“it’s also a great experience for our students. It’s not nearly as
challenging as writing a grant for NSF funding, but it’s still a real
sense of accomplishment.” For more information, visit www.acs.
org/undergrad and click on Student Chapters and Grants.
ACS DIVISION-LEVEL GRANTS — In addition to Travel Grants from
the ACS Undergraduate Programs Office, be sure to check out the
websites of the 34 ACS divisions and secretariats, many of which
also offer grants to individual students who are presenting posters to their specific technical areas.
UNIVERSITY RESEARCH/TRAVEL GRANTS— Every college and
university is different, but you should check with your chemistry
department to see whether your institution offers grants for costs
related to research, which sometimes cover costs such as travel or
ACS LOCAL SECTION GRANTS— Many ACS local sections offer
grants to help ACS student chapters. Be sure to reach out to your
local section to inquire. “I always tell my students, ‘You’re now
colleagues with working chemists in the region,’” says Wilhelm,
“‘and they’re interested in helping you get your career off to a
strong start.’ So check to see if your local section can help.”
inChemistry • www.acs.org/undergrad