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Schomburg Distinguished Visiting Scholar Program Criteria

[ Developed by Minority Faculty and Staff Association ]

Applications are currently being accepted for Spring 2022

General Guidelines
  1. The candidates should have a demonstrated record of scholarly /artistic achievement.
  2. The candidate should have significant experience in his / her discipline or area of specialization.
  3. Candidates should have a demonstrated record of success involving their area of expertise with a diverse student population.
  4. The candidate should have an awareness and appreciation for cultural differences among our student population.
  5. The candidate, preferably, should be of minority persuasion.
  6. The candidate should be capable of identifying with ethnically diverse students to the extent of serving as a model and mentor.

All proposals should be submitted electronically via this form:



  1. Provide a brief purpose of the proposed program and list desired outcomes that will result from the program.
  2. Identify the Sponsoring faculty / convening group / unit
  3. Identify the Scholar and provide a brief but clear description of the proposal and college related events. Where possible, include a list of student learning goals or outcomes you wish to achieve by bringing the scholar to Ramapo, and try to align with the goals of Ramapo’s Strategic Plan.   Describe how the success of the program will be measured once the activity (workshop, lecture etc, ) has been completed.
  4. Describe applicant’s qualifications for this grant.
  5. Identify the duration of the visiting scholars’ residency on campus and the community population to be involved with the project.
  6. Provide the projected program schedule during academic year 2021-2022.
  7. Include (if you have received a sponsored project in the past) a brief description of the   program, date, scholar, amounts etc.  Note that projects that have received Schomburg funding within the last two years are NOT eligible for a new award.
  8. Include a proposed budget request from the Schomburg Scholars program and any supplemental budget requests (please specify amount and funding source).
  9. Include supporting materials, (press releases, bios, resumes, etc.)
  10. List the tools you will be using to assess the success of the program or presentation.


Successful applicants agree to provide the committee with a brief report of the event by the end of the semester in which it occurs, as well as program documentation, including posters; press releases; photographs, and other documents appropriate for a Schomburg website. Future funding of proposals is contingent on receipt of this request.

All Schomburg performers and their Ramapo sponsors, must complete and sign a contract.

All performers who receive payment for services must also complete a W-9 form.

For more information on this process please review the General Guidelines.


In 2017 The State of NJ approved a new law that puts a $10,000 cap on the amount of state money that can be spent on  speeches at public universities.

  1. A contract must be completed for each performer/group – even if there is a last-minute substitution for the original performer.  No one is excluded from completing the contract – regardless of the amount of the honorarium or stipend.
  2. If a performer is to receive any type of payment, such as an honorarium than they must also complete a W-9 form. Please see the note above about the monetary limit set on speaker honoraria.
  3. The state of NJ does not permit public institutions such as Ramapo, to pay for the following things:
    1. Alcohol, when dining out – or for personal consumption in a hotel room.
    2. Anything outside of basic food  – such as flowers, gum, fruit in a hotel room, mini bar etc. or any other incidentals.
    3. Mileage or car service from home to airport or any other means of transportation, or parking at “home” airport or any expenses incurred at “home” airport.
    4. Car rental fees for luxury or town cars – only economy cars.
    5. The regular travel rate of $36.00 per day applies to scholars’ meals. When possible, dining vouchers, obtained through the Provost Office, should be encouraged for use by Schomburg Scholars.    All other sponsoring faculty or guests may not be reimbursed for any meals purchased off campus during the scholars’ stay.  Schomburg DOES NOT PAY FOR food at meetings or receptions.


All expenses should be pre-approved by the Provosts’ office.  Other departments on campus should not be procuring services or  purchasing materials for performers/scholars.  In some cases if monies have already been expended they can be reimbursed or transferred back from the Schomburg account provided original receipts are provided.

Honorarium – performers who live outside the US:

Without a tax ID or Social Security number the person cannot fill out the W-9; however, for non-US citizens a copy of the Visa or Passport is required.  There is no other tax form that a non-USA citizen can complete.

The rule for non-resident alien payments is that 30%  is withheld from the payment.  Ramapo submits this to the IRS.  The awardee will receive an IRS tax form 1042, and will have to file a return to possibly receive a refund of the amount withheld.

In some cases there is an agreement between the US and the country of the performer and there will be no withholding – however, this is something to be checked with the Ramapo Controller at Extension 7494 before submitting an honorarium.

Air travel – must be made by the performers themselves who are then reimbursed.  Travel cannot be billed through the Roukema Center etc.

Lodging – International scholars who need overnight housing can consider the following:

DoubleTree by Hilton Hotel Mahwah
180 Route 17 South, Mahwah, New Jersey, United States 07430
Tel: 1-201-529-5880    Fax:  1-201-529-4767

Reservations must be made by the office of the Provost.  Guests of Ramapo will receive special rates and do not pay room tax.

The following is an approximate cost for rooms:

Ramapo’s current rate is $129- Monday, Tues , Wed.
Regular rate this month is 179.00
Weekend rate is 102.00 for Ramapo
And ranges from 109-124.00 regular rate

At some point in the future, guest apartments on campus may become available but that is not expected before 2022.

Visas, and misc travel documents  – should be discussed with Rajesh Adhikari, Assoc Dir International Students and Scholar Services, International Education, before any arrangements are made with the performer/scholar.  Raj can be reached at:(201) 684-7567 –

Contract  (PDF)

W-9 Form (PDF)