Alumni Support
Sponsored by the Tufts University Alumni Association

The Professional Development Fund is an annual award open to all Tufts alumni to support their career growth and professional development.  The applications are very competitive, and support through the fund is not guaranteed with your application. 

The Professional Development Fund is jointly managed by the Office of Alumni Relations, Alumni Career Services, and the Tufts Alumni Council Career Services Committee.

Applications for 2020 close on November 15, 2019. 

Apply today
  • Application Requirements

    To be considered, you must submit the completed online application form before the deadline, November 15, 2019.


    Complete applications must include a PDF file of your resume with the following restrictions: Maximum 2 pages in length, and no Personal Identifying Information (aside from your name) - Remove information such as license numbers, social security number, nationality status, etc.

    You will also have to answer four open response written questions. Each question has a strict 1,200 character limit! We recommend typing your answers elsewhere and pasting them into your application, double checking the fit the character limit. 

    Short-Answer Questions:

    1. Please provide a brief but detailed description of the activity for which funds are being requested. If your activity is sponsored by an organization, please provide relevant supporting information about the sponsor (for example, is the sponsor accredited, etc.)
    2. How will this funding change the trajectory of your career? Why is this particular opportunity important for you to break into or advance in your chosen field?
    3. What steps in your career and/or education have led you to this particular opportunity? This can include course work, activities, jobs, volunteer work, etc. Demonstrate your commitment to this opportunity.
    4. Why have you turned to Tufts for help in funding this activity? Are there additional resources (such as employer funds or scholarships) that are available to you? What other alternatives have you explored?

  • Qualifying Activities

    Activities that Qualify for Funding:

    Alumni are encouraged to apply for financial support for their professional development needs. We fund a range of activities, including:

    • Professional organization involvement: membership dues, registration (including travel, lodging, meals) for conferences, workshops or trainings. 
    • Education & training: coursework and/or requirements for certifications and licensures, and continuing education

    Activities that Do Not Qualify for Funding:

    • Tuition and administrative fees as part of degree program.
    • Research activities such as compensating subjects.

    Award Size:

    Average awards are approximately $750; we will consider requests for larger amounts, but individual awards will not exceed $2,000.

  • Timeline for the Fund

    Application submissions are open for the month of October, 2019. Awardees will be contacted by January 30, 2020.

    October 1, 2019 - Professional Development Fund begins accepting applications for 2020.

    November 15, 2019, (Midnight, Eastern Time) - Professional Development Fund is no longer accepting applications for 2020.

    January, 2020 - Recipients of awards from the Professional Development Fund are selected.

    By January 30, 2020 - All applicants to the Professional Development Fund are contacted. Those who were granted funds for 2020 will have five (5) business days to formally accept their funds. Recipients work with Alumni Relations to file necessary paperwork with Tufts.

    Within one year of receiving funds - All recipients must contact the Office of Alumni Relations with their proof of purchase and testimonial statement regarding their professional activity.

    Tufts reserves the right to use any testimonial statements in future promotional and informational materials. 

  • For Students

    Visit the Career Services website for information about the student professional development fund, which can be used to purchase professional attire for job interviews. 

    Career Services Fund for Undergraduates

Strengthening Your Career

Young woman facing camera with quote over picture, "Thanks to a grant from  the Tufts Alumni  Professional Development  Fund, I was able to present my research characterizing men who never tested for HIV in sub-Saharan Africa at the 22nd International AIDS Conference in Amsterdam."

With the help of the TUAA's Professional Development Fund, alumna Caitlin Quinn, A11 was able to present her research to her industry at the 22nd International AIDS Conference in Amsterdam.  Caitlin was able to use the conference to not only present her research, but bring visibility to her area of study at this critical point in time. At the conference she gathered insights into the AIDS and HIV work of her research peers, as well as the cutting edge advances in her field. 

Of the opportunity the Professional Development Fund gave her, Caitlin had this to say: "Thanks to Tufts, my passion for global health began - and now, seven years after graduating, TUAA has invested in my development as a global health professional. I feel so privileged to be a lifelong member of the Tufts community, which continues to nurture and invest in the success of its alumni. This conference represents a point of growth in my career, which I could not have achieved without support from Tufts." 


Do you need support for a professional development opportunity? Applications for 2020 close on November 1, so apply today!

Apply for the Professional Development Fund

Alumni Career Services
Nicole M. Anderson
headshot of Nicole M. Anderson