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WisCon Member Assistance Fund

Do you need financial assistance to make attending WisCon possible? The WisCon Member Assistance Fund may be able to help!

The Fund is a pool of money to which anyone can apply to request funds to put toward attending WisCon — to cover airfare, gas money, hotel costs, childcare, or any other prohibitive cost. Details on our nomination process are below.

One of the aims of the fund is to promote diversity and to give folks a way to join us if they’ve been unable to do so in the past. If you’ve never attended WisCon because the cost kept getting in the way, we strongly encourage you to nominate yourself for the Fund! Whether you’re an established industry professional, a long-time reader, or a brand-new fan, we’d love to have you. Whether you want to be on panels, give readings, or sit quietly in the back of a conference room, we want you at WisCon.

If you have attended WisCon via Member Assistance Fund monies in the past, you can be nominated again. If funding is limited, we will give priority to people who have not previously received assistance. But we do try to help as many nominees as we possibly can, so please don’t pre-deny yourself by not applying!

Funding Amounts

We’re able to award funding in any amount up to $500 — many requests fall into the $100-$300 range, and we’ve awarded funding amounts as low as $50.

Nominating A Fund Recipient

The Fund is open to everyone. You can nominate a friend or an acquaintance, and we absolutely encourage you to nominate yourself! To nominate someone, send an email to the address listed at the top of this page with a quick synopsis that includes the following:

  • A little bit about the person you’re nominating.
  • The nominee’s email address.
  • An estimate of how much funding will be needed.

A good way to look at this is:  What dollar amount would make the difference between being able to attend and not being able to attend? If that dollar amount is flexible, please let us know by providing a range. The Fund strives to assist as many nominees as possible, and occasionally we’re able to do that by offering a nominee slightly less than their maximum requested amount, which then makes funding available for another nominee.

Nomination Period

The Fund has a fixed nomination period. The dates that nominations close are listed at the top of this page. Nominations must be received by 11:59pm Central Time on the deadline listed above. There’s no advantage to applying earlier — the decision process will not begin until we know how many nominations we have, and how much money is in the fund.

Our timeline is arranged so that everyone nominated will hear from us in time to sign up for programming, which ends in mid-March.

Donating to the Fund

Money for the Member Assistance Fund comes from donations. If you happen to have a little extra to share with others, we are grateful for your help! Our parent organization, SF3, is a 501(c)3 nonprofit, so your donations will be tax deductible.

There are three ways to donate:

  • During online registration when you buy your WisCon membership.
  • Via check. Make the check out to SF3 and put “WisCon Member Assistance Fund” or “WMAF” in the memo line. Then mail it to: SF3 / Attn: WMAFund / P.O. Box 1624 / Madison, WI 53701
  • Via PayPal:

Donate To The WisCon Member Assistance Fund




Call for Donations and Nominations to WisCon Member Assistance Fund!

The fund formerly known as the Scholarship Fund is now the WisCon Member Assistance Fund.

With us so far? We changed the name to make it clearer that the fund is there to help you, yes you, come to WisCon. You do not have to be an academic–just a person who is enthusiastic about coming to WisCon but needs a little help to do so.

Every year, we try to help as many people as we can come to WisCon. Now is the time of year when we ask you to please consider contributing to the member assistance fund this year. All contributions should be made to SF3 and sent to
SF3 Attn: WisCon Member Assistance Fund
P.O. Box 1624
Madison, WI 53701

SF3 is a 501c3 organization, so your donations are tax deductible. Every penny will be used to help potential WisCon members attend in May. You can also use Paypal and send the money to treasurer@sf3.org.

We are also accepting nominations for potential recipients of assistance. Nominate someone else or nominate yourself. Tell us why the potential recipient would be a good person to attend WisCon and give us an idea of what funds would make the difference between being able to attend and missing the convention. Typically, we give amounts between $200 and $500. We have been asked whether a previous recipient of assistance can receive help again. The answer to that is that yes, that is a possibility, but if we do not have enough money to help everyone who applies, we will give priority to people who have not previously received assistance. Depending on the number of nominations and the amount of donations, the WMAF committee will try to help out as many people as possible who would like to come to WisCon but need some support to do so.

All nominations need to be made by midnight, PST, February 15, 2014. Assistance recipients will be notified by March 15, 2014. These deadlines are timed to allow people who receive assistance time to sign up to be on programming. Nominations for the WisCon Member Assistance Fund should be sent to fund@wiscon.net.

Nominate away! And please, if you have a little money to help other people come to WisCon, donate!