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Washington State University
Carson College of Business GCISL Corporate Scholars – FAQs

GCISL Corporate Scholars - FAQs

Frequently Asked Questions

Q. HOW DOES THE GCISL CORPORATE SCHOLARS PROGRAM WORK?

GCISL Corporate Scholars is a 3-semester program. Scholars are selected in September of their Junior year. Juniors participate a one-credit immersive internship during the spring semester of their Junior year (Field Visit component will be over Spring Break). At the end of Spring semester, the Junior Scholars will present a list of candidate projects to the review board.

Senior Scholars enroll in either MGMT 496 Seminar or ENGR 420/421 Multidisciplinary Design 1 & 2 for the Fall/Spring semesters. They select projects from a list approved by the GCISL advisors, then work together in teams to complete their projects. GCISL mentors provide guidance and information throughout the year.

Senior Scholars present their results at the annual Showcase for Undergraduate Research and Creative Activities (SURCA) on the Pullman Campus in March and their final project results to GCISL Advisors and Industry Partners at the end of the Spring semester.

Q. WHO IS ELIGIBLE TO APPLY?

Full-time students on any of the physical WSU campuses.

Junior class standing (Senior with 2 years remaining is also acceptable). Transfer students entering as juniors are also eligible.

Minimum GPA of 3.0, with a strong academic record in classes in their major.

Q. HOW DO I APPLY?

All students apply via the single on-line application form. Apply here.

A preview of the GCISL Corporate Scholars Application is available here. This is for information purposes only. Applications must be submitted through the on-line system.

Note: Essay fields have a limited number of characters (not words).

Q. WHAT IS THE PROCESS FOR SELECTION?

Submit application by due date via the on-line system

Selection committee will confirm eligibility and select finalists for interviews.

Applicants will interview with the selection committee for their college. Students who may be eligible through multiple colleges will have one interview. Interviews will be scheduled either in person (or via Zoom, depending on COVID restrictions) during the week following submission. The selection committee may, during this time, contact references.

The selection committee for each college selects their Scholars.

Scholars are notified (generally 2-3 weeks after submission deadline)

Scholars sign paperwork and receive their first semester scholarship through their home college

Q. DO I NEED LETTERS OF RECOMMENDATION?

No. You do not need letters of recommendation. You may provide the names/emails of up to two professors who would be willing to serve as references for you. If a faculty member has nominated you, include their contact information in the references area. The selection committee will contact references via email as needed during the selection process.

Q. WHAT ARE THE CRITERIA FOR SELECTION?

The GCISL Corporate Scholars are selected as a cohort – meaning that applicants are evaluated on both their individual qualifications and their potential contribution to the group.

Individual qualities we are looking for are:

  • Strong academic skills in their major field(s) of study
    To contribute to a multidisciplinary team, Scholars need to have a solid foundation in their individual discipline.
  • Ability to work well in a team
    The projects are challenging and require intense collaboration. No one person will have all the necessary skills to complete the project. Scholars will improve their teamwork skills as part of the program, but they need to be willing to work in a team environment.
  • Ability to learn on their own
    The projects are real-world, which means that the required skills may fall outside the existing skillset of the team. Scholars need to be able to explore new domains and quickly come up to speed in subjects outside their comfort zone.
  • Communication skills
    Scholars need solid written and oral communication skills. Scholars will improve their communication skills as part of the program, but they need to start with the ability to explain their point of view to team members.
  • Professionalism
    The Scholars serve as representatives of WSU and will be interacting with industry employees, managers, and executives. Scholars therefore need to conduct themselves in a professional way that reflects positively on the University.
  • Willing to commit to the two year program.
    Students need to understand the requirements and be able to commit to meeting them.

Cohort consideration:

  • Balance of skills among disciplines.
    This is a multidisciplinary program and the projects require a variety of skills.

Q. HOW MANY SCHOLARS ARE SELECTED?

Up to a total of 12 Scholars from across disciplines.

Q. DOES BEING A GCISL CORPOERATE SCHOLAR GUARANTEE ME AN INTERNSHIP OR JOB?

No.

Q. WILL THE GCISL CORPORATE SCHOLAR CLASSES SATISFY MY CAPSTONE OR OTHER REQUIREMENTS?

Capstone Requirements:

Vary by college and department. You must to talk your advisor to determine if you need to take your college’s/department’s capstone class in addition to the Corporate Scholars class.

In the past year, we had a mix of students using the classes as their capstone while others did a separate capstone class.

We are working with the individual colleges to identify general guidelines, but they do not exist yet. Advanced planning early in your Junior year may help you to optimize your schedule.

We recommend you consider the worst case (i.e., you need to take both) to assess if your schedule can accommodate the Corporate Scholar requirements.

Honors College Thesis:

Corporate Scholars have been able to use their projects as the basis for their Honors Thesis. Students need to coordinate their Honors proposals through the Honors College and ensure that all Honors requirements are met. Students may be required to do additional, complementary research in support of their thesis. For more information, refer to the Honors College website.

Carson College Experiential Learning Requirements:

This is in progress. Will be updated as more information becomes available.

Q. WHAT WILL THE IMMERSIVE INTERNSHIP BE LIKE?

The immersive internship will consist of a 3-day intensive field visit to multiple senior living facilities in either Spokane or Seattle areas. During the day, Scholars will observe facility operations, participate in meals/programs/events at the facilities, and interview residents and staff. During the evenings, Scholars will meet with executives and participate in panel discussions and debriefs. The program will cover all costs associated with transportation, lodging and meals during the field visit.

Half-day workshops will be held (1) prior to the field visit (to prepare, receive ethics training, and review protocols) and (2) post-visit to consolidate information and develop project proposals. To accommodate everyone’s schedules the two workshops will most likely be scheduled for an evening or on a weekend.

Q. WHAT DOES IT MEAN THAT THIS IS A “PILOT PROGRAM”?

This is the first year of the program and we are using it to evaluate the opportunities and challenges of working with other corporate sponsors. As part of the pilot, we will be collecting feedback from you throughout your program. There may be unexpected challenges in dealing with logistics and administration of a multi-campus, multi-college program – so your help (and patience) may be necessary as we work out the kinks. It also means that you have the unique opportunity to influence how future Corporate Scholars Programs are implemented.

Q. HOW IS THIS DIFFERENT FROM THE BOEING SCHOLARS PROGRAM?

There are differences in the types of project, the mentoring organization, and the length of the program (3 semesters vs. 4). Other than those differences in the Junior year, all corporate scholars will take the same classes during their senior year. Exposure to the different types of projects being done by your peers is a benefit and will give you the opportunity to provide peer review for other projects.

Q. CAN I APPLY FOR BOTH PROGRAMS?

You may apply for both, however, you can only be selected for one.

Q. WHERE CAN I FIND MORE INFORMATION ABOUT THE PROGRAM?

More information about the general approach, the pilot project, and more is available from the Corporate Scholars umbrella website.

Contact

Jeff Perry

Dr. Nancy Swanger
Founding Director, GCISL
swanger@wsu.edu

Mark Hansen
Senior Director, Corporate Engagement
markc.hansen@wsu.edu

Michelle Chapman
Scholarship Coordinator, Carson Center for Student Success
mchapman1@wsu.edu