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bluestone

Should I include fellowships that used to support summer research programs in my CV?

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Hello everyone,

I will be applying for PhD this fall and have some questions on writing my CV. I have attended two summer research programs, both offered external funding sources to fund my stay and research during the program. I did not directly apply to these fellowships; they were automatically offered as I am accepted into the program. However, I was told about the names of the fellowships that are used to support my stay. Should I include this in my CV as a fellowship I have gained, or should I completely leave it out since I did not go through the application?

Thank you in advance for your inputs, and best luck for everyone during the application!

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Did everyone who attended the research program get the fellowship? I'd lean towards putting it on the CV if it was a select number of people and lean against including it if everyone got one. 

Was participation in the research program competitive or did everyone who applied get in? If applications to the program were competitive, then I would lean towards including the fellowship even if everyone who attended got in.

The other thing to remember is that even if you did not submit a separate application for the fellowship, they might have judged the competition based on your application to the research program itself. So, I wouldn't say that just because you didn't apply for it separately, it doesn't count as something you have "won" or "earned".

For more context, sometimes conferences will award travel funding or other recognitions to student presenters based on their submitted abstracts. These are commonly found on student CVs too, so even if these particular fellowships were automatic and non-competitive, it wouldn't be out of place for you to include it either.

Ultimately, I don't think it really matters too much if you put it on your CV. There's plenty of CVs with similar things as this award. If your award meets some of the extra criteria above, then I would say definitely put it on. But as you gain more experience and awards, typically things like this are the first lines to be removed when you have more stuff to put on!

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23 hours ago, TakeruK said:

Did everyone who attended the research program get the fellowship? I'd lean towards putting it on the CV if it was a select number of people and lean against including it if everyone got one. 

Was participation in the research program competitive or did everyone who applied get in? If applications to the program were competitive, then I would lean towards including the fellowship even if everyone who attended got in.

The other thing to remember is that even if you did not submit a separate application for the fellowship, they might have judged the competition based on your application to the research program itself. So, I wouldn't say that just because you didn't apply for it separately, it doesn't count as something you have "won" or "earned".

For more context, sometimes conferences will award travel funding or other recognitions to student presenters based on their submitted abstracts. These are commonly found on student CVs too, so even if these particular fellowships were automatic and non-competitive, it wouldn't be out of place for you to include it either.

Ultimately, I don't think it really matters too much if you put it on your CV. There's plenty of CVs with similar things as this award. If your award meets some of the extra criteria above, then I would say definitely put it on. But as you gain more experience and awards, typically things like this are the first lines to be removed when you have more stuff to put on!

Hi TakeruK, thank you very much for your reply. Yes it is a very competitive program; the acceptance rate is ~2%. Each accepted individual have some kind of funding but they are all from different sources, depending on the identity of the student (international/citizen, etc.) My concern about putting it on is, since the fellowship is awarded through the program and generally not open for public application, if the adcomm decided to search for it they most likely won't find my name/the fellowship name. I'm wondering if I would be considered as faking my CV in this way.

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My opinion is that no one is going to be googling all of your fellowships to figure out if they can find it on a website. There are many fellowships that don't appear anywhere. It sounds like the true value of this experience is the fact that you got into a very selective program, rather than whether you should name the fellowship or not. So, I would say naming the fellowship or not does not matter (I'd lean towards naming it though). Instead, definitely list the research program and then have your package somewhere say that the program is very selective as only 2% of applicants get a spot. You could write this in your SOP, but better still, if you could have one of your letter writers mention this, that would be great. If you have a letter writer that mentored you during this program then that would be ideal, otherwise, have someone who wrote you a letter for you to get into that program say it.

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