What is the Career Development Fund?

Through the Career Development Fund, Northwestern Career Advancement (NCA) provides funding to support or supplement the career development needs of undergraduate students with financial need.  Students are eligible to apply for no more than a total two interview travel requests (preferably on the same application), and one conference travel request per academic year.  Students can only receive funding for Interview attire one time during their undergraduate career at Northwestern.

Students can apply to receive funding to support the following career development pursuits:

Travel to professional interviews for internship or full-time employment

The Career Development Fund will support transportation to/from the interview, checked bag fees (if applicable), transportation to/from the airport and lodging costs.  The Career Development Fund does not cover meals while traveling.  Students may apply for funding to support up to 2 interviews per academic year preferably together in one application.

Travel/registration for career-related conferences and events

Conferences/events must have a career-related component with a clearly established connection between the event and your career goals (e.g.: job/internship fair, networking event, music competition, etc.)  To be eligible for consideration, the conference/event must be coordinated by an outside organization and have a website or information about the event that can be verified.  The Career Development Fund will support transportation to/from the event, checked bag fees (if applicable), transportation to/from the airport and lodging costs.  The Career Development Fund does not cover meals while traveling.

Two items to note about CDF conference related travel:

  1. Students may only apply for funding to support travel/registration to a conference or event one time per academic year. 
  2. Students are able to apply for travel to the same conference only twice in their undergraduate career at Northwestern.

Note: Students who will be presenting academic research at a conference will be referred to apply for a Conference Travel Grant through the Office of Undergraduate Research.

Travel to graduate/professional school interviews

The Career Development Fund will support transportation to/from the interview, checked bag fees, transportation to/from the airport and lodging costs.  The Career Development Fund does not cover meals while traveling.  Students may apply for funding to support up to 2 interviews per academic year preferably together in one application.

Purchase of Interview Attire/Suit

The Career Development Fund will provide up to $300 in funding for students who have not secured a job/internship to purchase interview attire. Allowed items include suits, button down shirts, blouses/shells, ties, and formal footware.  Awardees are not allowed to purchase casual/business casual attire which includes, khakis, jeans, polo shirts, t-shirts, accessories, undergarments, work boots, uniforms, lab attire, or casual work attire.  Students are given approximately one (1) month to shop for attire before they will need to submit receipts and return the visa card.  This timeframe may be shorter at the end of the academic year.


Note: Students can only receive funding to purchase interview attire one time during their undergraduate career at Northwestern.