Funding for the professional development of faculty at Whitman is provided in several ways. Faculty in visiting appointments receive "contract travel" with their initial appointments. Continuing faculty in tenure-track and Senior appointments receive a PDA each year. Faculty with a PDA (Professional Development Allowance) may apply for additional ASID funding, which is also available to faculty ineligible for either contract travel or a PDA. Funds for instructional development may also be available through the Center for Teaching and Learning. Calls for proposals typically come out twice a year.

Professional Development Allowance (PDA):

Tenured and tenure-track faculty not supported by start-up funds or income from an endowed chair as well as faculty with Senior status will be provided with $2,500 each fiscal year (July 1 to June 30) to support their professional development. Eligible faculty requiring additional funds for their professional development may also apply for ASID funds (see below).

Activities Eligible for PDA or ASID Funding Include:

  • Journal subscriptions and memberships in professional societies  
  • Research materials such as books, software, supplies, photocopying and expendable supplies and minor equipment. The funds are not to be used to support items or activities otherwise supported by departmental or program budgets such as computer, office furniture purchases, or teaching materials directly associated with a scheduled class. However, books to research a new course are appropriate uses of professional development funds.
  • Editing, indexing, preparation of figures, and other costs associated with the preparation and publication of scholarly materials. Please contact the Associate Dean for Faculty Development, Helen Kim  before using your PDA for this purpose.
  • Limited wages for student assistance in support of a research project.
  • Travel to a professional conference, workshop, or meeting related to ones scholarly research or teaching.
  • Travel for short-term independent research (e.g. field site, archives).

Disallowed Expenses:  PDA or ASID funds cannot be used to purchase individual commercial memberships such as Amazon Prime or personal cell phone or local internet services. Whitman College funds cannot be used to pre-pay professional development expenses that will later be reimbursed by an outside agency or organization.


  • Faculty with a PDA planning to apply for ASID funds must limit their non-travel expenses to $750 per fiscal year.
  • Any equipment or other durable resources (e.g., laptops, iPad, lab/studio tools, books) purchased with PDA/ASID funds will become property of the College. Please consult with WCTS on electronic devices and software before the purchase is made.
  • Allowable meal expenses include an average maximum food allowance of $75 per day (with a maximum of $375 in total for food during professional travel that exceeds five days). For additional specifics, see the Whitman Faculty Handbook.  Itemized receipts are required.
  • Allowable transportation expenses:
    1. Airfare: Coach rate only; upgrades and travel insurance are generally not permitted.
    2. Mileage reimbursed at current IRS rate for using a personal vehicle.
    3. A rental car may be more economical in some situations. Whitman's contract with Enterprise and National usually waives drop-off fees; ask Ruth Ladderud for the direct bill code. (Please note that gas for vehicles is reimbursed only for rental or College vehicles).
  • Reimbursement is allowed for up to $50 per day from a licensed child care provider for child care expenses up to five days. (Please check with Ruth Ladderud or Qi Jia before proceeding).
  • A completed and signed IRS Form W-9 must accompany reimbursement requests for invoices from an individual, landlord, or any unincorporated entity, such as childcare providers, non-commercial lodging or independent service providers. In the case of JPM credit card purchases for these services, there is no need to obtain a W-9. For the work that is completed by a non-U.S. citizen/service provider, a different tax form may be required. Please contact Qi Jia/Ruth Ladderud for more information.

PDA Roll-over: Professional development funds not used during the current fiscal year may roll over to the next fiscal year if: 1) no ASID funds (see below) have been received, and 2) the faculty member can justify how the funds will be used to augment only the next year's PDA funding. For example, a faculty member may request to roll over his or her remaining PDA funds from one year to the next year in order to fund a specific project. Please note, however, that the maximum amount that can roll over in one year is $2,500.

Requests to roll over PDA funds must be submitted to the Office of the Provost and Dean of the Faculty, c/o Qi Jia, no later than May 31.

Reimbursements: Professional development funding is administered through the Provost and Dean of the Faculty Office and the contact point for reimbursement is Ruth Ladderud.  Itemized receipts should be submitted within 30 days of the completion of any travel.

Aid to Faculty Scholarship and Instructional Development (ASID)

Additional ASID funds are available for faculty whose professional needs exceed their PDA or for faculty who do not receive a PDA. Visiting faculty receive contract travel funds and are not eligible to apply for ASID funding.

Requirements for applying for ASID funding:

  • The faculty member must complete an application and submit according to the timeline below.
  • Faculty who receive a PDA must have spent no more than $750 in non-travel expenses within an academic year. This will be indicated on the application form.  
  • Faculty must also have designated the use of their PDA funds before requesting additional funds from ASID.
  • Faculty in tenure-track positions, for whom scholarly work is an ongoing expectation, should expect to receive no more than $3,500 per year in ASID funding ($4,000 if international travel is required). Faculty in other types of appointments can typically expect no more than $1,500 per year although some projects could be considered on an exceptional basis.      

In making its decision, the Committee will take into account the following factors:

  • The merit of the project
  • The relation of the project to the faculty member's professional responsibilities
  • Tangible results of previous ASID grants
  • The faculty oversight of their past PDA/ASID funds
  • The amount requested compared with the total amount of funds available
  • Sufficient justification and information provided with the application

Timeline: Faculty who do not receive a PDA can apply at any time for ASID funding; their application will be reviewed on a rolling basis by the Associate Dean for Faculty Development. Faculty who receive regular professional development support in the form of a PDA must submit their proposal for review by the ASID committee according to the following deadlines

  • April 15 - projects to be completed between July 1 and November 30.
  • September 15 - projects to be completed between October 1 and March 31.
  • November 15 - projects to be completed between December 1 and June 30.
  • February 15 - projects to be completed between April 1 and September 30.

To apply, please submit an application to the Office of the Provost and Dean of the Faculty, C/O Qi Jia.

ASID Application (word)

ASID Application (pdf)