Frequently Asked Questions
Q: Is a 3.0 GPA a firm requirement?
A: Typically, the 3.0 GPA requirement is firm. HOWEVER, each application is given a comprehensive review, and those with a lower GPA may be considered if:
- A compelling explanation for the lower GPA is provided
- The student has shown marked academic improvement
- Evidence of potential to engage in graduate level research is provided (see answer to following question)
- The application includes exceptional letters of recommendation.
Q: Do I need to have prior research experience to apply?
A: No. Applicants with no prior research experience will be actively considered. Please provide in your application evidence of preparation for the challenge of a substantial research project, such as coursework or projects geared towards research, lab work, a description of interest in or knowledge of your desired research topic, etc.
Q: Should I identify a professor at the host institution with whom I would like to do research?
A: Yes. Please provide up to three faculty members you would be interested in working with during the program.
- Neither program can guarantee the availability of selected faculty. However, identifying faculty will help the selection committee at each institution get a fuller idea of your research interest. If you are selected, they will then try to match you with the appropriate faculty and/or graduate student mentor.
- At UC Berkeley, extensive information regarding faculty research and interests can be found on the UC Berkeley website. You may also search by academic department and program of interest here, or by faculty expertise here.
Q: How many applications do I need to complete to maximize my chances of being considered for a C3 fellowship?
A: Two applications. The deadline for all applications is TBD.
- One to each institution’s program: Berkeley’s SROP and Columbia’s SRP.
- Columbia is also a member of the Leadership Alliance, which provides yet another stream of funding to participate in the Columbia summer program, as well as to more than 30 other research universities. Please apply to the Leadership Alliance separately.
Q: What if my field of interest is not part of the ones funded by Mellon?
A: If you are interested in conducting research at UC Berkeley or Columbia University in a field different than those funded by C3 (listed here), you can still apply to either or both programs and be eligible for in-house funding.
- Selected participants generally receive the same benefits and participate in all activities, regardless of the funding stream.
If you have any additional questions, please do not hesitate to contact the program director at each host institution. You may also contact the undergraduate research office at your home institution.