Tips for Attending

When preparing for GHC, you have to consider a number of things, including how to cover costs and how to arrange for hotels and flights. The information below will help you plan a successful visit for your faculty and students.


  • Reach out to corporate sponsors or to local companies that recruit from your department. Companies want to support their future employees and may provide funding for GHC to create opportunities for your students and faculty.
  • Collect testimonials from students who previously attended to help convince funders of the importance and impact of GHC.
    • also collects data and other important information about GHC. You can use any of these sources:
    • Have a dollar amount in mind when asking for funds. The more prepared you are, the better.
    • Be prepared to work with several entities. One partner may not be able to cover the entire cost of taking your students to GHC.
    • Prepare a cost breakdown. Know how many students you’ll bring and what hotels, flights, food and registration will cost for each individual.
    • Get your students involved in the process. They can hold fundraising events to help cover the cost of their attendance.
    • Sponsor GHC yourself! Being a sponsor guarantees you a certain number of pre-paid registrations, branding and visibility at GHC and a booth. The booth is an excellent place to advertise research positions, graduate school opportunities, faculty positions and convene your students and alum.
    • After GHC, collect testimonials from your students (and possibly even your own survey responses) to share with funders. Make sure they know the impact GHC had on the students they funded.

Register Your Students

  • Purchase only registrations that you know your university will use, as purchases are nonrefundable.
  • Reach out to your students as early as possible to confirm their interest in participating in GHC. It may be difficult to reach them over the summer break, and once the fall semester starts, it might too late to register and plan their travel for GHC in October.
  • Register your students early. GHC is a popular conference, and registrations sold out within one week in 2015. Bulk registrations will be available for purchase by academic sponsors on x/x. General registration will open in July.
  • If some of your students have applied for a scholarship, do not purchase a registration for them until you know their application status.
  • If you don’t have funding to cover the trip for all your students, have a mini-application process to select your students (Note: some universities also make it a requirement for the mini-application process that the student apply for at least one external scholarship like a GHC Scholarship)

Book Hotels and Flights

  • If you are an academic sponsor, confirm your students’ attendance before summer break. They will need time to plan their travels to Houston in October.
  • If you are booking as an individual, do not assume the discount airlines offer the best deal. These airlines may have expensive additional charges.
  • If you are booking as a group, work with a travel agency that can mix airlines as a roundtrip. This saves you from having to buy multiple one-way tickets.

Packing Tips for GHC

Read our article on what you should bring to GHC.

Engage Your Faculty

  • Send a faculty member. Most universities will send at minimum one faculty mentor (often female) to accompany students and help them navigate the conference.
  • GHC may be the first conference your students will attend. Work with their faculty mentor to give the students networking tips and other ways to make the most out of their conference experience.
  • Spread the knowledge of GHC. After GHC, encourage faculty members to help students host a presentation/discussion for those who couldn’t attend in person.  Topics could include:
    • Lessons from their experience
    • Tips for attending next year
    • New technologies discovered at GHC