Apply for a Teacher Travel Grant This Summer

Original article appears on Edutopia, accessible here.

Summer is the perfect time to research and apply for a teacher travel grant. The key is to look in the right places and write a compelling application. Then, once you win an award, you might find yourself kayaking the length of the Mississippi River while developing a river ecology unit. (At least, that’s what one teacher did with a Fund for Teachers grant.)

To help you get started, here are some tips for writing winning proposals, inspiring articles, and a list of interesting travel grants that you might want to consider.

The Best Places to Look

Edutopia has covered travel grants in the past. Be sure to check out our blog posts on the subject, including Teacher-Tested Travel Grants, Five-Minute Film Festival: Travel for Teachers, and No-Cost Teacher Travel for more grant-writing tips and funding sources.

Plus, the Institute for International Education is an organization that anyone interested in educational travel should get to know. In addition to administering tons of interesting travel grant programs, the IIE is also a source for research, policy updates, and relevant resources for teachers.

  • Grosvenor Teacher Fellowships From National Geographic: Each year, National Geographic and Lindblad Expeditions take K-12 geography teachers on expeditions around the world. Usually, 25 educators are selected for fellowship trips each year, and participants travel to exotic locations and participate in professional development and curriculum-building activities.
  • Fund for Teachers Fellowships: Fund for Teachers fellowships enable educators to design their own professional development programs. International and domestic travel are often included in grant proposals, and FFT has been supporting these grants since 2001. Additionally, FFT has links to some other great travel fellowships.
  • Global Classrooms Program From IREX: This Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs program is a year-long cultural exchange for middle and high school teachers. The program includes intensive training, an international field experience, and a global education symposium in Washington, D.C.
  • Toyota International Teacher Program: This program from Toyota and administered by IIE combines international travel and environmental education. Through the program, secondary educators from U.S. schools go on two- or three-week trips to learn about environmental issues and innovative solutions for environmental challenges.
  • Einstein Distinguished Fellows Program in STEM: The Einstein program enables teachers to advocate for STEM on Capitol Hill and/or Congressional offices for up to a year. The application process for the 2015-2016 school year opened in fall 2014.

Other Great Travel Grant Sources

  • Travel the World With Grants Just for Educators: This article from the National Education Association features ten scholarships designed to help teachers travel the world. Included are program details, funding amounts, and eligibility requirements for applications.
  • 35 Travel Grants and Other Travel Opportunities for Teachers and Education Professionals: Travel Beyond Excuse is a blog that is “helping teachers who want to travel.” This article features 35 sources for teacher travel grants, and in addition, you’ll find tons of ideas and strategies for traveling on the cheap.
  • Travel Grants From Teaching Traveling: Another website dedicated to education travel, Teaching Traveling is a great source of inspiration for educators looking for travel funding. In addition to the site’s Travel Grants section, you’ll find inspiring interviews with “teacher-travelers,” as well as ideas and tips for securing funding.

Writing an Awesome Application