What is 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 can apply to receive funding to support the following:
Travel to Professional Interviews for internship or Full-time Employment
Travel to Graduate/Professional School Interviews
Northwestern University has currently restricted domestic travel to essential purposes only. As a result, funding to support travel to job/internship interviews and graduate/professional school interviews has been suspended until further notice.
Purchase of Interview Suit
The Career Development Fund will provide up to $300 in funding for students to purchase an interview suit for interviews or career-related events.
Your purchase must include the following items:
- One blazer
- One matching bottom (dress pants or skirt)
Your purchase may include the following items if funding allows:
- Dress shirt(s)/blouse(s) to be worn with the suit
- Additional dress pants or skirt
- Sweaters or cardigans
- One Belt
- One pair of professional dress shoes
- Hosiery or dress socks
Items that are NOT covered include:
- Casual or business casual attire of any type (dresses, denim/jeans, polo shirts, khakis, t-shirts)
- Accessories (briefcase, purse, jewelry, tie clips, etc.)
- Beauty products
- Evening wear or dresses
Students are given approximately one (1) month to shop for attire before submitting receipts and a required essay. This timeframe may be shorter at the end of the academic year. Students that apply in the same quarter they are graduating must understand that they will be required to finish their shopping and submit their receipts prior to graduation as we are not able to provide funding after students graduate. Students should only submit applications for funding if they are able to shop in this timeframe.
As of November 2021, students are eligible to receive funding to purchase an interview suit through the Career Development Fund/JC Penney Suit-up 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.
Graduate/Professional School Test Preparation and Application Costs
The Career Development Fund will provide students with financial need up to $600 in reimbursement for Graduate/Professional School Test Preparation and Application expenses. This funding is only available one-time during your time at Northwestern. We recommend that you apply for this funding at the time that best aligns with your graduate/professional school application timeline. To the extent possible, plan to submit receipts for all expenses related to your test preparation and application expenses at one time. Funding can be requested for the following expenses:
- Graduate/Professional School Application fee(s)
- Transcript request fee(s)
- Score report fee(s)
- Exam fee
- Exam prep courses
In order to maximize your funding, NCA suggests that you research any fee assistance or waivers available before applying.
Students are asked to complete their purchases and submit receipts and a required essay within a reasonable timeframe, typically by the end of the current quarter. This timeframe may be shorter at the end of the academic year. Students should only submit applications for funding if they plan to make purchases in this timeframe. Students that apply in the same quarter they are graduating must understand that they will be required to finish their shopping and submit their receipts prior to graduation. We are not able to provide funding or reimbursements to students after they graduate.