Sponsorship Program

To support both the university’s strategic goal to encourage & reward professional growth and the university’s Sustainability Policy, the Office of Sustainability offers employees an opportunity to receive funding through our Professional Development Sponsorship Program.  Funds will be available to support learning opportunities connected to sustainability and current job responsibilities.

Program Details

Who’s eligible to apply?

Any non-student Auburn employee, regardless of classification (faculty, staff, A&P, TES), may apply for funding.

What qualifies as professional development?

In general, any conference, workshop, or event that enhances knowledge, skills, or abilities (KSAs) in the participant’s primary work area AND directly and substantially connects to the topic of sustainability will qualify for funding.  The opportunity may be hosted by an organization whose primary purpose is to integrate sustainability into the field, or it may simply be a sustainability-themed offering.  The Office of Sustainability staff will have the final determination of whether a professional development opportunity qualifies for funding based on these criteria.

How much will be awarded?

Employees can receive up to $750 per award and may only receive an award every three academic years.  Successful applicants will have one year to use the funding.

When will awards be made?

Each May and November, we will issue calls for applications via announcements in our monthly digest, social media, and Auburn News.  The application period will be open for four weeks, after which, Office of Sustainability staff will review all applications to determine that period’s awardees.

How will awardees be determined?

Office of Sustainability staff will consider the following criteria when determining awardees:

  • The strength of the development activity’s connection to sustainability;
  • The ability to integrate/incorporate the KSAs obtained into work at Auburn;
  • The degree to which the lessons learned will be shared upon return to Auburn;
  • The applicant’s past attendance at the event;
  • The applicant’s role at the event; and
  • The impact of traveling to the professional development opportunity.

Preference will be given to first-time recipients over past awardees.

What must awardees do to receive funding?

Interested employees must:

Complete the online application AND receive an official award notification from the Office of Sustainability.
Take sustainability actions if traveling.
Host a debrief meeting with Office of Sustainability staff & at least three people that might benefit from what you learned within a month of the event.
Share key takeaways on the Office of Sustainability website via a blog post with images.
Submit the reimbursement form, including attaching all required documentation.

Employees interested in applying for the program will need to complete the application form.  Information needed to complete the form includes:

  • Basic contact and employment information;
  • Details concerning the professional development you would like to attend;
  • A statement on how you think you can integrate your learning into your work at Auburn; and
  • Acknowledgement of the required commitments.

Applications for the spring term have concluded.  They will be accepted again in the fall from November 1, 2022 through November 30, 2022. For future funding opportunities, an additional application period will open in May 2023.

Graphic with text "Apply for Funds in May or November" and "Learning Never Ends"