Professional Development FAQ

After being approved for funding of a specific PD activity, can I change the type of PD activity for which I requested?

No. You will only be refunded for the PD activity that you have applied for and for which funds have been approved by the CPDF Committee (c.a.art.10.15 and 10.16)

Are the PD funds taxable as income?

Funding for activities or supplies may be considered a taxable benefit if they are not essential to your continued employment.

Can French or English language courses outside of Concordia be considered as PD activities for funding?

Yes, however because Concordia offers both credited (at the University) and noncredited (Cont. Ed.) French and English courses free of charge, it would be advisable to use PD funds for other activities.

Can I apply for CPDF every year?

Yes, you can apply every year; however, priority will be given to 1st time applicants or employees who have not received funding in the preceding 3 years. (c.a. art. 10.11b)

Can I apply for CPDF more than once during the same budget year?

Yes, but only one request per year can be granted. (c.a. art. 10.12a)

Can I apply for funding for a professional development activity that does not directly relate to my current job?

Yes, you can apply but it will be rejected if it does not apply to your current or future job at Concordia University. If it relates to a future job, the onus is on you to show proof. (c.a. art. 10.12c)

Can I apply for funding if I want to take a course at another university?

Yes, providing it is related to your job and not available at Concordia University through tuition wavers.

Can I apply for PD funds for a course that my work unit needs me to take?

Yes, but you should try to get funding from your department first. If it is required by your department, then the department should pay for it. If your department cannot provide the funding then you can apply for CUPEU PD funding.

Can I apply for PD funds for textbooks for a course?

Yes, you can if you are able to provide proof of course registration.

Can I apply for PD funds to attend a a conference even if my supervisor does not agree to give me time off to attend?

Yes, you can apply. However, you will have to take the time to attend the conference as vacation time, assuming your supervisor agrees to grant you vacation time or unpaid leave during the period of the conference. (c.a. art.10.11c)

Can I request a number of unrelated items (for example, a course and a magazine subscription) using the same application form?

Yes, you may as long as, overall, you don’t exceed the maximum allowable grant.

Can I request funding for membership in a professional association?

Yes, you may as long as, overall, you don’t exceed the maximum allowable grant.

Can I request funding for membership in a professional association?

Yes. You can apply for PD funds to become a member of a professional association. (c.a. art.10.12b)

Can I request funding for software, hardware or other type of technical devices that I would like to become proficient in?

Yes, you can request funding for software, books or magazines. No, you cannot request funding for any hardware or technical devices. (c.a. art.10.13b)

Does my superior need to approve my request?

Yes, only if there will be missed work days, you need to obtain your supervisor’s approval. (c.a.art.10.11c)

Do I have to consult with Concordia’s Travel Department for my traveling arrangements?

It is advisable to consult Concordia’s Travel Department and compare prices.

How do I claim a re-imbursement for my PD activity?

You must fill out a university reimbursement claim form and send it along with supporting documents (receipts, etc.) to CUPEU at S-MI-202.

How do I report the expenses?

Fill out the university reimbursement claim form and on a separate legal size (8 ½ x 14) sheet of paper attach/glue all your receipts accompanied by your credit card statement. Black out any information on your credit card statement that does not refer to your PD expense claim. Fold and place th …

How long should I expect to have to wait before the refund is deposited in my account?

Expect a minimum of four weeks and up to six weeks before the refund is deposited into your account by accounts payable.

How many times per year does the CPDF Committee accept applications for funding?

The CPDF Committee meets a minimum of three times per budget year (June, November and March) to review the applications. If any PD funds remain after the third call, there might be an additional call for submissions or the remaining funds may be rolled into the next budget year. (c.a. art.10.12a …

How soon after I finish my PD activity should I submit my claim?

As soon as you have received all your receipts for your PD activity, fill out your expense/reimbursement claim form. This is normally no later than 30 days after the activity has been completed.

If I have any other questions about professional development, who should I contact?

You can contact Laurenza Cacciatore, CUPEU’s Office Administrator, at ext. 8603 or by e-mail at cupeu@alcor.concordia.ca

I am on a temporary leave of absence from work (i.e. sick leave, maternity or paternity leave). Can I still apply?

No, because you have to be an actively working.

If I quote a more convenient price from an airline company that is not on Concordia's list, am I permitted to purchase my ticket from that company?

Yes, you can.

If my expenses for my PD activity were greater than I requested and/or was awarded, will I be reimbursed the difference?

No. You will only be refunded for the PD activity that you have applied for and for which funds have been approved by the CPDF Committee (c.a.art.10.15 and 10.16)

Is there a maximum number of times I can apply for PD funding?

No. However, priority will be given to first-time applicants or employees who have not received any funding in the preceding 3 years. (c.a. art.10.11b)

Is there a restriction on the type of courses for which I can apply for PD fund support?

You can only request PD funds for courses that relate to a current or future job at Concordia. (c.a. art.10.12a)

Is there a specific travel agency that I would need to buy my ticket from?

No, you are not obliged to purchase your ticket from one of Concordia’s travel agencies, but it is a good idea to quote prices from them and compare.

I’m a full-time, temporary, contract employee. Do I qualify for funding for Professional Development?

No. You need to be a permanent, part-time or full-time CUPEU employee in order to qualify for CUPEU PD funds. (c.a. art.10.11a)

I’m a permanent, part-time, CUPEU employee. Do I qualify to apply for PD funding?

Yes. Permanent full-time and part-time CUPEU members are eligible for PD funds. (c.a. art.10.11a)

What is the current per diem for food? Is it the same for any country I might travel to?

The per diem amount is set by Concordia’s VP Finance. As of July 28, 2009, the amounts are as follows:

The per diem meal allowance is now $46.25 per day:

  • Breakfast: $9.00
  • Lunch: $13.00
  • Dinner: $24.25

The mileage rate is $0.43/km.

The currency used depends on the country being visited. All travel in Canada will be in Canadian currency, United States in US dollars and in Europe in Euros. When requesting reimbursement for per diem meals or mileage, it is important to provide proof of travel distance and number of days away.

Always consult Concordia’s travel policy (specifically, hotel, travel, and per diem allowances) before preparing your PD application

What is the maximum amount I can apply for?

A maximum amount of $4,100.00 in the 2016-2017 fiscal year.In subsequent years, the CPDF committee will decide on the amount before putting out the first call for application. (c.a. art. 10.12a)

What is the report that I have to submit afterwards?

The written report is a summary of the professional development activities that you attended with funds from the CPDF. Not every PD recipient must submit a report. See the following excerpt from the CUPEU Collective Agreement (Article 10.13c):

“An eligible employee who benefits from the support of the CUPEU Fund shall make a written report providing details on the activities undertaken, to the Committee and their immediate supervisor/unit head, within sixty (60) days of the completion of the activities. Such a report is not required for allocations related to the purchase of publications, software, or membership in professional associations/organizations. Failure to provide such a written report will jeopardize the member’s right to receive professional development funds in the future.”

When are we advised that are request has been awarded?

The chair of the committee will e-mail you with the results of your request within a week of the PD committee meeting, which usually occurs one week after the application deadline. In other words, you can expect the results within two weeks of the application deadline.

When can I submit my Professional Development application?

The date you apply will depend on the date of your proposed activity or purchase. At its meeting, the PD Committee will only approve purchases or activities that occur before or shortly after the next meeting (usually up to a month aftwerwards).

When does the CPDF Committee meet to award funds?

The meeting dates can be found here. The CPDF Committee usually meets one (1) week after the deadline for submission. Therefore, the PD activity for which you are requesting funds needs to take place after the committee has met. Check the deadline date carefully.

Where can I find the application forms to submit a request for Professional Development?

You will find all the necessary forms in the Professional Development section of the CUPEU website.

Where do I get the re-imbursement claim form?

You can get the reimbursement claim form from your department or from the CUPEU Union office, MI 202, 2130 Bishop Street, tel. 8603.

Where do I submit my reimbursement/expense claim form?

You must submit your reimbursement/expense claim form to CUPEU at S-MI-202.

Where does the money in the Professional development fund come from?

Every spring, the University adds up all of the CUPEU annual salaries that were in place on March 1 (the Mass salariale). The following June 1, an amount equal to half a percent of the Mass salariale is deposited into the fund. The following rules also apply:

  • up to 1/3 of unspent portion of annual fund may be rolled over to the following year
  • maximum fund value is 1% of the Mass salariale. Funds over that amount are returned to the University.
Who do I submit my report to?

You should submit your professional development report to your departmental supervisor with a copy to CUPEU, S-MI-202. (c.a. art. 10.13c)

Who is qualified to apply for professional development?

All permanent employees in good standing are eligible to apply. This means that you must have finished your probationary period and paid the $2 fee prescribed by the Labour Code.

Why do I have to include my credit card statement (s)?

This is important because if there is any conversion from Canadian to US funds, the statement clearly indicates it.

Will I be reimbursed if my expenses exceed the awarded amount due to unforeseen reasons or miscalculation?

No, you will not be reimbursed for any amounts that exceed the awarded sum or for any item(s) not requested on your application form. It is your responsibility to correctly estimate the full cost of your project when preparing your application.