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Professional Development Grants

Washington Secretary of State Washington State LibProfessional Development Grants 

Professional Development Grants from Washington State Library

Washington State Library (WSL) funds Professional Development (PD) grants for staff to attend conferences, workshops, and seminars, both in-person and virtual. These awards use federal funding from the Institute of Museum and Library Services (IMLS) through the Library Services and Technology Act (LSTA).

Library systems are limited to $6,000 and individuals are limited to $1,000 in PD grant funding per federal fiscal year (October 1-September 30). WSL will process applications on a first come, first served basis. The program will close when funding has been exhausted.

We accept applications up to 15 days before an event, but we encourage applicants to take advantage of savings like early bird registration and group rates.

Contact for more information or help.


Qualifying libraries include public libraries, school districts for their school library staff, academic institutions for their libraries, tribal libraries, and non-profit institutions and their libraries. If the library is not fiscally independent, the application must come from the library’s parent entity. Either a library or their parent institution, depending on their structure, has the authority to apply for these grants and receive awards.

Applicants must work for the library at least 10 hours/week for the duration of the grant process (application to reimbursement payment).

We reserve the right to limit awards due to our own budget restrictions.


Applications are accepted on a rolling basis. 

Prior to the event

Submit an application at least 15 days before the PD event. WSL staff will review your application and send an award letter to you and your contracting authority.

All expenditures must be paid up-front by the attendee's library. WSL will reimburse allowable expenses after the event.

During the event

Attend the entire event. Save all your receipts.

After the event

Create a visual presentation that illustrates your learning. It could be an infographic, video, or short slideshow. It is not intended to be a huge burden and we invite creative submissions. We report on this program to our funder, IMLS, and they appreciate supporting visual materials.

Complete the PD narrative report and upload your visual presentation.

Submit a PD grant claim form and documentation to WSL. Documentation should include proof of payment, not just an invoice or purchase order. Proof of payment could be a receipt, check stub, bank or credit card statement showing the payment, or a statement from the vendor with a $0 balance. Clearly label the documentation to show what you're requesting reimbursement for. Claim packets can be mailed or emailed to

Allowable Expenditures

If the PD event is more than 50 miles away from a recipient's home or work (whichever is closer), recipients can be reimbursed for:

  • Lodging at government per diem rates for the event location or the conference rate (up to 25% over per diem rates)

Grant funds can also reimburse:

  • Conference registrations, pre-conferences, virtual workshop fees
  • Substitutes (for school library staff only)
  • Mileage driven in a privately owned vehicle ($0.67/mi), parking, or ground transportation at the beginning and end of the event (transportation during the event needs to be approved separately)
  • Airfare and up to one checked bag
  • Indirect costs at the organization's federally negotiated rate or up to 10%

Grant funds do not reimburse:

  • Meals
  • Professional memberships
  • Individuals - We can only pay your institution
  • Lodging at short term rentals like airbnb or vrbo
  • Personal travel deviations - You must provide comparison documentation with and without the personal travel and WSL will reimburse the lower amount