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1) Can I still apply to the program if I have less than three years from graduation?

The "requirement" is to have three years to participate in the program. Students who have less than three years before graduation may still be able to complete the program if they have already engaged in activities that are aligned with the Grand Challenge Scholars Program (GCSP) curriculum. For example, if a student has already made progress in a research project which can be justified as contributing to solving one of the grand challenges, then the student would have a head start and have a chance of completing the program before graduating.   

Students are encouraged to apply to the program, where they will have an opportunity to explain how they may have already made progress on one or more of the activities of the GCSP curriculum. 

2) With regards to the activities required in the Grand Challenge Scholars Program (GCSP) curriculum, do they all have to be focused on the same Grand Challenge?

Focusing on the same Grand Challenge is certainly one option, however is not mandatory.   

3) What do I need to do to get started?

First make a plan for how you will complete the program, including how to comply with the five components. Example, for the GCSP thesis, you can show how you integrated the other components of GCSP (e.g., interdisciplinary, entrepreneurship, global dimension, service learning). Plan your curriculum so that you do activities / courses that complement the GCSP.  The student is expected to establish these connections.

4) What if I already have a thesis? 

You can reuse your thesis and explain how the research is related to the Grand Challenge and optionally the other components in the program.

5) Who should my faculty mentor be?

You can have a GCSP faculty mentor who can be different from the faculty advisor for the thesis and can be in another department. One advantage of having the same advisor is that they would know most about the research area. 

6) What are the expectations aside from completing the program requirements?

At the end of each year, you are expected to write a report to relay activities related to GCSP and your progress towards meeting the GCSP requirements. You are also expected to participate in the GCSP activities, such as the annual GCSP summit. Also, the more senior students in the program are expected to help mentor the students behind them in the program as well as to serve as external ambassadors of the program.

7) How do I compute my level of involvement for the five GCSP components?

As far as level of involvement for each of the five components, first determine the level of engagement for each one.   Thereafter, the engagement should be equivalent to the credit hours recommended in the Grand Challenge Scholar Program Curriculum page. For example, for Service Learning, where the depth of engagement is "exposure," the engagement can be composed of involvement in different activities (e.g., leadership position in the Big Event, peer teaching, etc.), with participation spaced out over the entire duration of the program.  

To determine compliance, the total participation can be totaled to see if the service learning experience meets the criteria of "exposure" which is equivalent to a minimum of a 3 credit hour class which entails approximately 9 hours work a week multiplied by the number of weeks in a semester.    

To verify actual compliance, the student needs to consult and get approval from their GCSP faculty mentor and the GCSP Director.