NALMS Student Travel Grants
NALMS awards grants to students to present the results of graduate-level research at its annual International Symposium. The award of these travel grants is subject to the availability of funding within the annual Symposium budget. Student presenters to cover the costs of Symposium registration fees, travel, and/or overnight accommodations can use these grants.
Definition of Student
To be classified as a “student,” an applicant must, at the time of his/her application for a NALMS Student Travel Grant, be currently enrolled as a post-baccalaureate student at a college or university in a degree-seeking program at either a Master’s or Ph.D. level, or equivalent for foreign students.
Note: A minimum number of registered course hours are not required to be classified as a student. Students completing graduate degrees, particularly at the Ph.D. level, may commonly register for a minimal amount of course hours while completing thesis or dissertation work
Requirements for Consideration
An applicant must meet the following requirements in order to be considered for a NALMS Student Travel Grant:
a) An abstract must be submitted for presentation at the annual Symposium as outlined in the general Call for Papers. The abstract will be subject to the same selection criteria utilized for general abstract submittal
b) The research presented in the abstract must have been performed by the applicant as a student under the direction of a designated professor or advisor
c) The research must be related to the general field of lake and reservoir management
d) The abstract must be among those selected for presentation at the annual Symposium; and
e) After the student has been notified of acceptance of his/her abstract by the Symposium Program Committee, the student must then complete and submit to NALMS the NALMS Student Travel Grant Application Form, along with all attachments, in one package, by July 15. (In prior years, copies of academic transcripts have been required. However, the Scholarship Committee feels that this is an unnecessary invasion of privacy, and that the requirements outlined above along with the information requested by the Student Travel Grant Application Form, provide an adequate basis for evaluating suitability for student travel grants).
Application materials become the property of NALMS upon submission, and will not be returned to the student.
All application materials must be NALMS no later than July 15. Members of the Scholarship Committee will review each application, and notification of awards will be provided to applicants by September. (The Scholarship Committee as needed may modify these dates.)
The NALMS Scholarship Committee will review each student travel grant application. Applications are ranked according to numerical scores assigned across four categories, which include: (1) abstract quality; (2) significance of contributions to lake management; (3) strength of recommendation letters; and (4) a miscellaneous category comprising considerations such as NALMS membership, previous publications and presentations, and other intangibles.
Based upon the results of the scoring process, the NALMS Scholarship Committee will make recommendations to the Board of Directors concerning the award amount to be provided to each student, subject to budgetary limitations. These recommendations will take into account items such as the amount of travel assistance requested, travel distance, and proposed mode of transportation.
Distribution & Reimbursement Policy
The following guidelines are used for the distribution and reimbursement of student travel grants funds:
1. Conference Registration. All student presenters who have an abstract accepted for oral presentation at the annual Symposium; request financial assistance; and meet the definition of “student” outlined above, will be given complimentary registration to the annual Symposium. Complimentary registration includes meals offered as part of the regular Symposium program. The funds required to cover the cost of these complimentary student registrations will be deducted from amount budgeted for student grants within the Symposium budget. The remaining funds will be available for distribution as student travel grants.
2. Travel Assistance. Travel expenses for each student awarded a travel grant will be reimbursed up to the maximum amount awarded to each student. Reimbursement is conditioned upon timely submission to NALMS of receipts documenting allowable travel expenses. Allowable travel expenses are hotel accommodations and transportation by plane or automobile.
Complimentary hotel accommodations for up to three nights may be included as part of a student travel grant. NALMS and not the student for such accommodations must, however, arrange the reservations. NALMS also encourages students to accept a double occupancy accommodation, in order to maximize its ability to support as many students as possible under the student travel grant program. Room charges for meals, entertainment, and other items unrelated to the Symposium will not be considered for reimbursement.
Allowable transportation expenses include either coach class airfare or vehicle mileage at the prevailing federal rate, tolls and parking up to a maximum of $250. If actual transportation expenses are in excess of the amount awarded to the student, the student must pay the excess expense. If actual transportation expenses are less than the amount awarded to the student, the remaining funds will remain in the grant pool and available for award to other students.
Original receipts and requests for reimbursement of reasonable travel expenses must be received in the NALMS office by November 30. Requests received after November 30 cannot be fulfilled.
3. NALMS Membership. Students receiving a student travel grant for the first time will receive a complimentary one-year student membership in NALMS.
4. Repeat Awards. Students may submit only one NALMS Student Travel Grant application each year. However, students may request assistance under the NALMS Student Travel Grant program in multiple years if the abstract submitted each year addresses a different research topic or provides a significant enhancement of the previously submitted research. The receipt of prior awards under the program may be considered as a factor in the miscellaneous category during the scoring of applications. After the first award is received, the student must be a member of NALMS to be eligible for further awards.