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Frequently Asked Questions

How many times can I apply to the Career Development fund?

  • Students are eligible to apply for no more than a total two (2) interview travel requests (preferably on the same application) per academic year. 
  • Students can receive $300 in funding for an Interview Suit through the Career Development Fund/JC Penney Suit-up event up to two times during their undergraduate career at Northwestern. The funding must be in an interval of two years or more (i.e.: freshman and junior year or sophomore and senior year), and will not be provided in consecutive years.
  • Students can apply a maximum of $600 in reimbursement for Graduate/Professional School Test Prep and Application Fee assistance one time during their undergraduate career at Northwestern. To the extent possible, please plan to include all expected expenses related to your test preparation and application costs at one time.

Can I be reimbursed through the Career Development Fund?

Interview Suit funding: Funding is only provided up front.  Students are provided with $300 to make attire purchases.

Graduate/Professional School Test Preparation and Application Fees:  Reimbursement is the preferred funding method.  Students should save receipts for all eligible expenses and submit at the same time for reimbursement up to $600.

What other resources for undergraduate student support exist?

Several offices and schools on campus offer funding to support undergraduate professional development needs. The review committee may refer an applicant to one of these resources if it is a more appropriate fit for the funding request. Check out the SES One Form and the Office of Undergraduate Research to search for additional funding sources.

What funding resources exist for graduate students?

Graduate students are typically able to receive professional development funding through their academic program or school of enrollment.  We recommend that you contact your academic program to learn about available funding opportunities.

Why is so much advance time needed to process applications for travel?

Applications for travel within the US are requested three weeks in advance of the date of travel to allow for the most availability and cost when booking arrangements.

What is restricted from funding?

  • Food
  • Airbnb
  • Rental Cars
  • Personal car expenses: gas, tolls, mileage
  • Ground transportation costs other than to/from airport and to/from interview location
  • International travel
  • Hotel cost in the Chicagoland area
  • Graduate school “admitted students” days or campus visits outside of a formal interview
  • Any hotel expenses beyond a stay that is necessary for the interview
  • Due to COVID-19, funding for travel for interviews is currently suspended until further notice

How is the Career Development Fund been impacted by COVID-19?

  • Travel requests for interviews have been suspended until further notice.
  • All funding meetings will be conducted virtually until further notice.
  • Funding for the purchase of an interview suit, will be provided by a $300 virtual Hyperwallet visa card, that can be used only for online purchases or transferred to your personal bank account.
  • Since we anticipate most interviews and career events will be conducted virtually, we recommend discussing appropriate interview attire for a virtual interviews with the company, graduate school and/or your NCA career adviser.

More questions?

Feel free to contact our office at