Sabbatical Leave and Sabbatical Assistance Grant

The Sabbatical leave program is designed to support activities that will enhance a faculty member’s professional development. The intent is to provide a semester or a year’s release from normal duties. Sabbaticals may be granted for activities such as intensive research projects, concentrated study in a new area of one's discipline, or writing up work for publication. They are not awarded for projects that involve substantial teaching responsibilities; this typically precludes sabbaticals that involve more than a one-course teaching load or equivalent per sabbatical semester.

Applicants for full-year sabbatical may apply for a Sabbatical Assistance Grant. The maximum amount for these awards is $4000, which can be used to cover expenses related to the project, including travel, but not for purchase of capital equipment (such as computers) or for a stipend.

Sabbatical recipients are required to return to the University for at least one full year of service following the sabbatical and to submit a Sabbatical Final Report to the Center for Faculty Development and the EVP/CAO by October 1 of the year following the sabbatical leave.

Application Deadline: The deadline for Sabbatical Leave and Sabbatical Assistant Grant applications is 4:00 p.m. on October 1 (for the following year).  The Sabbatical Leave Chair/Dean Recommendation form must be submitted by 4:00 pm on October 8.

Final Report Deadline: Final Report is due October 1 of the year following completion of the project.

Application Process: Sabbaticals are not awarded competitively; however, the applicant must justify the leave time with a convincing plan for personal professional development. Applicants are strongly encouraged to begin planning their sabbaticals a year or more prior to the expected application date. The application form must be filled out completely with all requested information provided, including a copy of the final report from the previous sabbatical leave and a current CV in the required format. Applicants should carefully read all guidelines for preparation of the sabbatical narrative  ‎and address each of the required criteria in the guidelines.

Applications should be emailed as one Word or PDF document to the Faculty Development Center (facdevctr@stthomas.edu) in the Center for Faculty Development office. A copy of the application should be given to the department Chair who must email the Sabbatical Recommendation Form for the application to the Faculty Development Center (facdevctr@stthomas.edu) by October 8. If the applicant is the department Chair, the recommendation form should be filled out and forwarded to the Center by the Dean. The applicant must fill out the top portion of the Chair/Dean Recommendation Form document and send it to the Chair/Dean for completion and submission to the Faculty Development Center.

Selection Criteria: Applications must be written in jargon-free language for a non-technical reviewer. Criteria by which proposals will be evaluated include, but are not limited to:

  • The possibility of significant professional development for the applicant, such as concrete goals for dissemination of findings in the form of conference presentations, journal or book publications, etc.
  • Evidence that the applicant has given substantial thought and preparation to the sabbatical project (e.g., letters of invitation from other institutions, awards of grants, comprehensive and detailed plan for sabbatical activities)
  • Overall feasibility of the project with reasonable expectations for completion of work
  • Clarity of the proposal in convincing, well-written prose
  • Record of professional engagement over the previous six years (or since the last sabbatical)
  • Support of the department Chair/Dean
  • Length of service to the institution