Student Conference Fund

The HDS Student Conference Fund supports HDS degree candidates who seek to attend academic and professional conferences or workshops which are external to Harvard University and related to their field of study.


Students in good standing who have completed at least one semester of full-time study at HDS are eligible to apply. The competitive selection process gives preference to students who will be presenting papers, serving on panels, convening sessions and/or interviewing for academic positions.

Award amount

Awards can be up to $500 and are applicable to travel costs and registration fees only (not lodging or other expenses). Individual students applying to attend multiple conferences are eligible to receive a maximum of $500 in reimbursements per academic year.

Application deadlines

2020-21 grants will be made in a single non-rolling decision period. Conferences attended in the summer or fall of 2020 or planned for the winter or spring of 2021 may be submitted for award consideration no later than noon, Monday, February 1, 2021. Decisions will be released Monday, February 22, 2021. The application will be made available on this webpage Monday, January 4, 2021.

Due to University restrictions on travel, applicants participating in conferences during the summer or fall of 2020 may only apply for reimbursement of their registration fees. For students applying to on-site conferences held January 1–June 30, students may apply for reimbursement of their registration and travel expenses, up to $500, as usual. Note, if travel restrictions extend into the spring, this policy will change and we will update these guidelines well before the February 1 deadline.


In completing this application you will need to provide:

  • A copy of your HDS transcript (unofficial copies are acceptable)
  • Documentation of acceptance of your paper or other relevant participation
  • Documentation of costs for registration
  • Estimated or purchased documentation of costs for travel (winter and spring only)
  • The name of an HDS faculty member who can speak to the quality of your work and the relevance of the conference to your field of study. We will contact the faculty member only if the Fellowships Committee has questions about your application.

The application and selection process is managed by the Office of Career Services with application decisions made by the HDS Fellowships Committee.


Questions may be directed to the HDS Office of Career Services at 617.496.3313 or