Summer is fast approaching, which means our Annual Convention is just around the corner! If you have not made plans yet to attend Convention in DC this August or are still debating going, I’ll make the decision easy for you. GO! Seriously, this is an amazing opportunity to connect with other graduate students and researchers. You can learn about the internship application process and attend programming within the divisions you are a part of or check out a new division! DC is also an amazing city to explore and soak up a bit of culture.
If I have not convinced you to attend yet, check out the programming that APAGS has planned for you this year! The APAGS Convention Committee has created four programming tracks unique to graduate students: Internship; What they Don’t Teach You in Graduate School; Clinical; and Academic. You don’t want to miss these great programs! Be sure to mark your calendar for the APAGS Social on Thursday, August 7th at 6pm – this is a fun, laid back time to meet other graduate students and your APAGS leaders!
So by now you should be convinced that you cannot miss Convention in DC this year (if you aren’t convinced then you didn’t click the links above. Go do that and come back. I’ll wait for you.), but I know you are concerned about funding. Rest assured you are not alone. There are a number of ways to make Convention fun and affordable! Here are a few suggestions for funding your 2014 trip to DC.
Student Funding Options
- APA and APAGS offer a number of student travel funds. Unfortunately, the deadline for those has passed this year, but have it on your radar for next year (hello Toronto!).
- Join division listservs! Divisions often have student funding awards so don’t just let them slip into your spam folder. Make sure you read all the instructions and give yourself plenty of time to submit a thought-out and complete application; they often require a letter of recommendation from a faculty member.
- If you are an international student, there is a $500 travel award with a May 1 deadline.
- Check with your academic department and graduate student association for travel awards or reimbursement opportunities, particularly if you are presenting at Convention.
DC on the Cheap
- Lodging can be one of our greatest expenses while traveling to conventions. DC has a number of hostels that offer an inexpensive way to sleep. Check out vacation rentals and split a house/apartment with other graduate students! This is a great alternative to a hotel because you would have the option to save some money by cooking some meals at ‘home.’ For inexpensive and sometimes free lodging, also check out www.airbnb.com and www.couchsurfing.org.
- Seeing DC does not have to be extremely expensive! Many museums are free or discounted for students. Make sure you take your student ID with you wherever you go and just ASK about specials for students!! Check out Washington.org for some free and nearly free attractions.
- Food will be a bit expensive. Bring some food with you or go to a grocery store when you first arrive. Stock up on some fruits, granola or protein bars, and nuts. Food at the convention center will be expensive and time between sessions is short. Make sure you are prepared with a few grab and go options that will keep you energized.
- Subscribe to Groupon emails for DC and get a few deals before you go!
- If you are driving, fill up your gas tank outside of DC where gas is much less expensive.
Register Early! Registration is now open!! Be sure to register before June 30th for $70 (APAGS member rate). After that, registration increases to $80 and then $90 after August 5th.
I can’t wait to see you in DC this August!! Be sure to say HI at APAGS events!
Convention Committee Member
The University of Memphis, Counseling Psychology