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ASPB 2021 Travel Award Application


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ASPB is competitively awarding a limited number of travel awards to attend Plant Biology 2021, which is scheduled to be held this year in Pittsburgh, PA from July 17-21, 2021 and online. The travel award program aims to increase attendance of early career scientists at the annual meeting by providing funds for those in financial need. Increasing diversity among Plant Biology attendees is another primary goal. Undergraduate students, graduate students, postdocs, pre-tenure faculty, and professionals beginning their careers in plant science are strongly encouraged to apply. Applicants must be members of ASPB; however U.S. residency is not a requirement to apply.

Applications must be submitted online. Letters of recommendation can be uploaded directly to the application by the advisor or professional mentor via a link they will receive once the applicant saves and finalizes their application. Alternatively, a letter of recommendation can be emailed to Sylvia Lee at slee@aspb.org. The submission deadline for the application and both letters is Monday, January 4, 2021 (11:59 p.m. EDT). Applicants: Please request letters of recommendation with sufficient time so the writers can honor this firm deadline. The system will automatically email a request for a letter to the specified advisor/mentor only once the applicant selects finalize on their application.

Applicants must submit for review:

  • an abstract of the research that they intend to submit for presentation at the Plant Biology meeting*
  • a paragraph expressing why attending Plant Biology 2021 would enhance their career
  • a primary advisor's letter of recommendation that includes the level of funds available, if any, for applicant travel
  • a letter of recommendation from a professional mentor (other than the primary advisor)
  • letters of recommendation must be uploaded to the application via a custom link that will be emailed to the designated advisor/mentor or emailed to Sylvia Lee
  • a current resume or CV

Undergraduate, Graduate and Postdoc applicants must have their advisor and professional mentor submit both letters of recommendation.

Note: The system will automatically email a request for a letter of recommendation only once the applicant selects finalize on the application.

Faculty-level and Professional applicants do not have to submit letters of recommendation; however, they are required to indicate current and pending support.

*PLEASE NOTE: Submission of an abstract as part of the Travel Award application is a distinct process from submitting an abstract for presentation at Plant Biology 2021. Abstracts submitted in support of an application for a travel award and must be received by Monday, January 4, 2021 (11:59 p.m. EDT). To have your work considered for presentation during a concurrent symposium at Plant Biology 2021, you must submit your abstract through the regular meeting abstract system. 

ELIGIBILTY: (Eligible applicants must meet this criteria)

  •   Must be members of ASPB. (Applicants may reside outside the U.S.)

Travel award selection criteria will be based (in this order) on:

  • the science and the quality of the abstract
  • the statement about how attending the meeting will have an impact on the applicant's career
  • the strength of the two letters of recommendation (see above for letter instructions to undergraduates, postdocs, faculty and professionals)
  • ethnic diversity

Applicants who are selected to receive an award will be notified by email by Monday, February 8, 2021. Non-recipients will be notified shortly thereafter.

Financial Logistics

The Society will set aside up to $46,000 in 2021 to support the Plant Biology Travel Award Program.

  • Recipients each are awarded a $575 travel stipend.
  • Checks (or wires) for the stipend are issued AFTER the award recipient registers for the meeting.
  • Award recipients qualify for the early-bird registration rate.
  • Award recipients are emailed a special registration promo code so that a portion of the Plant Biology 2021 registration fee may be waived.
  • There is a non-refundable abstract submission fee.

ASPB reserves the right to adjust these parameters for awardees who do not travel to Pittsburgh and instead participate in Plant Biology 2021 virtually

Should unforeseen events prevent an award recipient from attending the meeting, the recipient must notify ASPB immediately and return the award so that a waitlisted applicant can use the funds to attend the meeting.