[The Spark program allows] students to see the opportunities that are out there and available. I had no knowledge of many of the resources shown in Spark, and I am so happy that I was able to be a part of this program.
—Spark Program Participant
The Spark Program is an eight-week program that offers select students the opportunity to learn about competitive external fellowships and provides them with the tools to develop a competitive profile.
The fall 2019 Spark program will be held on Tuesdays 5-6:30 p.m. and Wednesdays noon-1:30 p.m. There will be a section for biomedical engineering and chemical engineering majors only, on Thursdays 4-5:30 p.m.
Interested students must apply online by Friday, Sept. 6 and go through a selection process.
The Spark Program is held in the fall and spring for freshmen and sophomores. Presenters include UB’s current and past fellowship winners, as well as key faculty on campus.
Students must commit to participating in the entire series of workshops and will also meet individually with Elizabeth Colucci or Megan Stewart as part of the program. Students are encouraged to complete an application for a summer program or research opportunity.
Students must submit a short online application to be considered for the program. Selected students are typically intellectually curious and interested in focusing on their academic and professional development.
The fellowships and scholarships that are discussed do not cover the expenses of medical, dental or pharmacy school. Therefore, the Spark Program is not the best fit for students who plan on pursuing these career paths. Additionally, all of the competitive awards covered in the program are available to U.S. citizens only.
The program meets over the course of eight weeks for lunch or dinner; it introduces students to opportunities at the undergraduate and graduate levels. Throughout the program participants meet students who have previously applied for and won prestigious awards. It is designed to give students the opportunity to assess their strengths, envision their futures and create plans to become competitive for major fellowships and scholarships. Students will complete Clifton StrengthsFinder and begin to write a personal statement.
|Spark Program Schedule |
|Week 1: Introduction to the Spark program and meet a fellowship winner|
|Week 2: What are my strengths? Clifton Strengths assessment|
|Week 3: Telling your story through the personal statement with the Center for Excellence in Writing|
|Week 4: Networking; how to network as an introvert |
|Week 5: Research dinner with faculty|
|Week 6: Internationalizing your undergraduate experience |
|Week 7: Community and civic engagement|
|Week 8: Searching for fellowships and scholarships |