Make Your Case to Attend TCDL

Logo for Texas Conference on Digital Libraries 2023. On a black background: text in aqua neon reads "Hi How Are You" in all caps. The "o"s in the text are made with tan coffee rings. On the right side of the logo, text in pink neon reads, "TCDL 2023, Austin, Texas" and hovers over a field of unique coffee mugs.

Tuesday, May 16 – Thursday, May 18, 2023
IN PERSON: Commons Conference Center, Austin, Texas

Asking for time away from your usual work duties as well as funding for travel and expenses to attend a conference can feel scary and overwhelming – especially if your team is experiencing tight budgets and/or reduced staff. 

We encourage you to use this tool to help you make your case to attend the Texas Conference on Digital Libraries. We hope you will feel empowered to make your case by helping you communicate the benefits of attending our conference. 

Please reach out to us if you have any questions or to let us know how it goes at We hope to see you at TCDL! 

Many thanks to the American Library Association for inspiring this helpful tool. 



  • Tally your potential costs. The budget worksheet can help you identify and tally costs covered by your institution and costs you will need to cover out of your own pocket. 
  • We’ve negotiated low room rates for conference attendees with the understanding that professional development dollars need to go farther than ever. 
  • TCDL registration includes meals, breaks, wifi, parking, and access to all events. Registration discounts are available to members of the TDL consortium and students. 
  • See our Lodging and Carpooling Matching Station spreadsheet. This spreadsheet is to be used as an informal tool to connect individuals who are offering or seeking to carpool and/or room with someone for TCDL 2023.
(see menu here)

Tuesday, May 16

Wednesday, May 17

Thursday, May 18





morning break







afternoon break



evening reception


TCDL program information:

  • TCDL presentations range in scope. People working in departments all across the libraries are represented. 
  • Share any preliminary program information with your colleagues and supervisor. Encourage them to discover presentations that interest them and/or draw connections to their work.
  • The program offers easily-identified tracks focused on your field / your department. 
  • Reinforce the casual environment at TCDL; networking and learning alongside colleagues is highly encouraged. 
  • Networking possibilities include planned coffees and meal times, as well as participatory workshops that encourage conversation 

Covering your work duties:

  • Draft a plan listing how essential tasks will be handled while you’re away. Include how, if necessary, technology can easily keep you accessible.
  • Schedule provides ample time for folks to check in at home and at work. A co-working space is also provided away from noise.
  • Free wifi and charging stations at the conference 
  • Planned check ins (perhaps at breaks or after meals)

When you return:

  • Draft a plan noting that when you return to the office, you’ll share action items and fresh ideas learned at the conference (e.g., notes from speaker presentations and discussion groups, knowledgeable vendors you met, best practices, contacts you made through networking, suggest a way to present what you learn in an informal presentation that faculty and staff could attend etc.) with the rest of the staff.
  • Conference proceedings are freely accessible online after the conference
  • Inform your supervisor that you can focus on implementing one new idea that will pay back many times over the investment of time and money spent to attend.

Put your request in writing.

Feel free to use the sample email we’ve drafted. Here are some tips

  • Look for text in brackets [that suggest areas where you can customize your request to your needs]. 
  • Be sure to delete the prompts / brackets before you hit “send.”

Please contact if you have any questions or suggestions along the way. We hope to see you at TCDL!


Texas Digital Library is a consortium of library and archives professionals that propels the Academy forward by maintaining our past and preparing for the future. Membership in TDL is open to any academic library. Find out more by visiting or email us at