Travel Grants and Fellowships for Educators
Summer is an excellent time to conduct research and submit an application for a teacher travel grant. The key is to look in the right places and write an application that stands out from the crowd. If you are awarded a prize, you may find yourself kayaking the length of the Mississippi River while developing a river ecology unit for your university or college. This is what one teacher did with a grant from the Fund for Teachers, at least.)
To get you started, here are some pointers on how to write winning proposals, a few thought-provoking articles, and a list of interesting travel grants that you might want to look into or apply for this summer, just to name a few resources.
THE BEST PLACES TO LOOK
In the past, Edutopia has provided funding for travel grants. Check out our other content on the subject, such as “Five-Minute Film Festival: Travel for Teachers” and “No-Cost Teacher Travel,” for more grant-writing tips and funding sources, as well as “Five-Minute Film Festival: Travel for Teachers.”
In addition, the Institute for International Education is an organization that anyone interested in educational travel should become acquainted with as soon as possible. Additionally, the IIE provides research, policy updates, and opportunities for teachers and working professionals in addition to administering a plethora of interesting travel grant programs.
Here are some examples of grants and fellowships that are currently available:
- Every year, National Geographic and Lindblad Expeditions send K–12 geography teachers on expeditions all over the world as part of the Grosvenor Teacher Fellowships program, sponsored by National Geographic. The fellowship program selects approximately 25 educators from the United States and Canada each year to participate in fellowship trips, which take them to exotic locations and allow them to participate in professional development and curriculum-building activities. Applications for expeditions in 2018 will be accepted starting in November.
- Fellowships for Teachers from the Fund for Teachers: Fellowships from the Fund for Teachers allow educators in the United States to create their professional development programs. Travel, both internationally and domestically, is frequently included in grant proposals, and FFT has been supporting these grants for educators in the United States of America since 2001. Additionally, FFT has connections to several other excellent travel fellowship opportunities. Applications will be accepted starting in October 2017.
- Teachers for Global Classrooms is an initiative of the International Research and Education Exchange (IREX). This Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs program, which is administered by IREX, is a year-long cultural exchange program for elementary, middle, and high school teachers from across the United States of America. An intensive training program, an international field experience, and a global education symposium in Washington, DC are all included in the program. Applications will be accepted starting in December 2017.
- Grants to Travel to Polar Regions From PolarTREC: PolarTREC offers annual grants to U.S. 6–12 teachers to spend three to six weeks in polar regions and participate in field research projects. The grants are funded by the National Science Foundation. Educators have traveled to places such as Greenland, Alaska, and Antarctica since the program’s inception in 2007. They have studied a variety of science-related topics, such as wetland dynamics and coastal ecology, during their travels. The application process for the expeditions of the following year will open this summer.
- NOAA Sea Grants for Teachers: NOAA Sea Grants for Teachers: Teachers have sailed aboard NOAA research ships and gained valuable research experience through the Teacher at Sea program, which was established in 1990. Since then, more than 600 teachers have participated in the program. Participants in the program, which is open to K–12 and college educators in the United States, learn about oceanic and atmospheric science alongside NOAA scientists. Applications for the 2018 program will open in late 2017 and will close in early 2018.
OTHER GREAT TRAVEL GRANT SOURCES
- Grants for Earth Conservation Research: Teach Earth Conservation Research The Earthwatch Institute’s Teach Earth program provides K–12 educators in the United States with the opportunity to support conservation projects in natural areas all over the world. Education professionals, in addition to conducting research, are involved in science learning and professional development. Educators who want to be notified when applications open must fill out an interest form. Qualified teachers will then be invited to complete a full application, which is due in late 2017.
- Tours of Germany Organized by the Goethe-Institut: Every year, the Goethe-Institut provides social studies and STEM educators from the United States and Canada with the opportunity to travel through Germany on two-week excursions. “Each corner of Germany is sampled through sight, sound, touch, and taste” during the tours, according to the organizers. Applications for the 2018 program will be made available in October of this year.
- In STEM, the Einstein Distinguished Educator Fellows Program in STEM provides opportunities for U.S. teachers to advocate on Capitol Hill and/or in congressional offices for up to a year on behalf of science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM). After the 2017–18 school year, the application process will be closed; the application process for the 2018–19 school year will open in late summer.
Other excellent sources of travel grant funding include:
- Travel the world with grants designed specifically for educators: This article from the National Education Association discusses ten scholarships that are intended to assist teachers in their global travels. Program details, funding amounts, and eligibility requirements for applications are all included in this document. Most grants are only available to teachers in the United States; international educators should look into the Fulbright Distinguished Awards in Teaching.
- Grants and other travel opportunities for teachers and education professionals are listed in the following 29 categories: Travel Beyond Excuse is a blog dedicated to “assistance for teachers who desire to travel.” As well as providing information on 29 different sources of teacher travel grants, this article also includes numerous ideas and strategies for traveling on a budget.
- Teachtraveling.com offers travel grants to educators who want to travel for educational purposes. This website, which is dedicated to education travel, is a great source of inspiration for educators who are looking for funding. The Travel Grants section of the website also contains inspiring interviews with “teacher-travelers,” as well as ideas and tips for securing funding for your trip.
WRITING AN AWESOME APPLICATION
Using Grant Space Classroom From Foundation Center: The Foundation Center’s training centre offers hundreds of useful online grant-writing courses that can be accessed at any time. Many of the courses are free and self-paced, and they are intended to assist anyone who wishes to improve their proposal writing skills. Introduction to Proposal Writing and Proposal Budgeting Basics are two excellent, free courses for beginning proposal writers.
How to Write a Grant Proposal that Gets Accepted: This GuideStar resource provides practical advice on how to write strong application documents. There’s a lot of information here to get you started, including suggestions for what to include and formatting and style guidelines.
The following are the ten most important components of winning proposals: Are you looking for ways to make your application stand out from the crowd? Mathilda Harris, the director of the Grant Training Center, offers advice and suggestions on what should be included in a grant proposal to help you succeed.