What is the Clayton WIN Professional Development Fund Program?
Clayton WIN Professional Development Fund Program provides funding to WIN members and women over the age of 18 who reside or conduct business in Clayton and seek to further their education and/or professional development on a career path to entrepreneurship and business.
Who funds Clayton WIN Professional Development Fund Program?
The program is made possible through fund raising efforts of Clayton WIN, sponsorships and donations.
Goal of the Clayton WIN Professional Development Fund Program:
To advance educational and professional development through events and opportunities that support entrepreneurship and business acumen for Clayton WIN members and non-members who reside or conduct business in Clayton.
How can funds be used?
Funds may be used for an item / product / service that must be a discernible material, perceptible, substantial, real or actual and must be made payable directly to the third-party vendor or entity only providing the service/course such as:
- Tuition, fees, books, course, seminars, workshops and continuing educations credits (CEUs)
- Registration and professional fees
- An educational / professional organization or career advancement program
- Any upcoming WIN approved program or course of study
- Career / business / professional development or business launch
Funds may not be used to satisfy a past educational debt. If applying for funds to support a business launch, funds must be used for something tangible such as equipment or IT development. The funds cannot be used for permits or licensures and may not be used for marketing and advertisement.
The applicant must be fully eligible to attend the intended activity to apply for these funds.
How do I apply?
The Clayton WIN Professional Development application is available on the WIN website. Submit a completed application and requested documentation by mailing to the address on the bottom of the application, or email to: professionaldevelopment@
To be eligible for awards applicants must:
- Be over the age of 18 at the time of application
- Submit all requested documentation:
- Completed application
- Business letter
- Professional or personal letter of reference
- Be seeking to enhance business skills in current employment or aspiring to own and operate a local business
- Be a WIN member not currently serving as an elected officer or active board member or any female residing or conducting business in Clayton.
- Not have been a recipient of a Professional Development award for at least two (2) years.
When can I apply?
Professional Development Fund applications may be submitted for an award at any time by Clayton WIN members and by non-members. Applicants will submit completed application and requested documentation by mailing to the address on the bottom of the application, or email to: professionaldevelopment@
How much funding is available?
Total available funding will be decided upon before the end of the December WIN Board meeting for the following fiscal year. Funds available through Clayton WIN will be awarded based on the Clayton WIN funds available at the time of the request up to a total of $500.00 per request. There is no limit on the number of individual awards given out, as long as the total amount awarded does not exceed the total amount designated by the Board to be awarded for that specific calendar year at the time of the application review process. There will be no carry over of applications to the next year. If an application is not selected or the funds run out, the applicant needs to reapply the following year. Any unused funds will carry over to the following year.
How will the fund recipients be selected?
All applications are reviewed by the Professional Development Fund Committee Chairperson, along with other committee members on a first come first serve basis. After a review of all applications submitted, the selection committee may choose to interview applicants as needed for clarification or additional information contained in their application packet.
The funding recipients will be chosen based on eligibility criteria, personal circumstances, achievements, educational goals, the impact the program and funding will have on their professional career, Clayton WIN participation (for WIN members only). Those WIN members currently serving either as an elected officer or an active member of the Board are deemed ineligible.
The selection committee will make a recommendation to the Board and the Board will decide with a majority vote, who receives the individual awards. Applicants should provide sufficient lead time to allow the review committee to complete their evaluation and put forth a recommendation to the Board. Decisions of the selection committee and Board of Directors are final.
When and how will the fund recipients be notified?
Fund recipients will be notified by phone or email.
If I am selected as a fund recipient, how will I receive the funds?
Funds will be made available shortly after the recipient is announced. The check will be mailed to your permanent home address and will be made payable only to the educational/professional institution or career advancement program or third-party vendor named in your request. It is your responsibility to deliver the award check to your institution/vendor’s financial office. Any checks not cashed within six (6) months after issue will become null and void and funds will revert to the Clayton WIN Professional Development Fund Program.
What will be expected of me as a fund recipient?
Fund recipients must provide accurate information at all times. They must be enrolled in an approved educational or professional program within six (6) months of receiving notification of the award and provide written confirmation of enrollment. They must continue their designated educational program for the complete term of the award (barring illness, family emergency or military service), and at the end of the study provide written documentation of successful completion. Failure to meet any of these criteria will result in a request for funds to be returned to the Professional Development Fund.
It is the expectation of Clayton Women in Networking that all award recipients will:
- Satisfactorily complete the funded activity and provide proof of completion to the selection committee
- Volunteer for one or more of the Clayton WIN events within a year of receiving funding support
- Agree to speak at one Clayton WIN event, or provide a written summary or one (1) minute video of the benefits derived as a result of receipt of the funding support and sharing your experience
- Allow WIN to publicize the award through appropriate social media outlets
The Professional Development Fund committee will follow-up with recipients to ensure that all expectations are met.
Can I reapply for a Professional Development Fund award?
Yes, previous recipients can reapply for assistance at least two (2) calendar years after they are awarded funding provided they have met all requirements for their previous award.