CLAS staff: Apply now for Mary Louise Kelly Professional Development Award

This opportunity provides funding to pursue professional development, including training, coursework, and conventions. Applications are due in November.
Monday, September 18, 2023

By Charlotte Brookins 

The Mary Louise Kelly Professional Development Award is once again open for applications.  

The award provides funding for staff in the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences to pursue professional development opportunities, including training, coursework, conventions, and more.  

Applications close Friday, Nov. 10. 

Among prior recipients of the Mary Louise Kelly Award is Claire Frances, director of the Center for Language and Culture Learning in the Division of World Languages, Literatures, and Cultures.   

“Staff professional development is very important, especially in fields that work in providing technical and instructional support for language and culture learning, as I do,” explains Frances. “I think it’s important to remain professionally relevant and to collaborate with colleagues who are doing the same work at other institutions.” 

 Claire Francis
Claire Frances

To qualify, staff members must be employed in a permanent full-time or part-time position with CLAS, and applications must be submitted prior to the event they wish to attend. Submissions will be judged based on the appropriateness of the proposed budget, as well as the presented objectives of and justifications for the event they intend to attend.  

Applications will be evaluated by the CLAS staff council, staff recognition committee, and the dean. 

Selected staff members will receive up to $500 in funding, have their names published on the CLAS staff awards website, and be honored at the annual CLAS staff recognition ceremony in the spring. 

Frances, who received the award last year, used the funding to attend two professional development events: the Computer-Assisted Language Instruction Consortium (CALICO) Conference and the International Association for Language Learning Technology (IALLT) Conference. 

At CALICO, she presented a Can-Do Self-Assessment App, which she and her colleague Giovanni Zimotti developed with the support of an Innovations in Teaching with Technology Award. She was also the Henderson Plenary Speaker at IALLT, where she showcased Iowa Intersections, a multilingual oral history project dedicated to connecting with local community members in their native languages. 

“The Mary Lousie Kelly award was very helpful in getting me to both of these events,” says Frances. “The ability to network and to connect with other leaders in the field helps give me new ideas on how to innovate in the teaching, learning, and assessment of languages.” 

Eligible CLAS staff, especially those who are interested in furthering their education through professional development opportunities, are encouraged to apply for the Mary Louise Kelly Award.  

For more information on eligibility and to apply, visit the CLAS human resources webpage.  

The University of Iowa College of Liberal Arts and Sciences offers about 70 majors across the humanities; fine, performing and literary arts; natural and mathematical sciences; social and behavioral sciences; and communication disciplines. About 15,000 undergraduate and nearly 2,000 graduate students study each year in the college’s 37 departments, led by faculty at the forefront of teaching and research in their disciplines. The college teaches all Iowa undergraduates through the college's general education program, CLAS CORE. About 80 percent of all Iowa undergraduates begin their academic journey in CLAS. The college confers about 60 percent of the university's bachelor's degrees each academic year.