APEX Fellowship Frequently Asked Questions

General Application Questions

Start by completing this intent to apply form. Upon submission of this form, you will receive the link to the APEX Fellowship application. Why? By utilizing this intent to apply form, we are ensuring that everyone who is interested in applying has the information needed to best complete the application. This is done to reduce errors and mistakes on applications and to make sure students have all the information they need in order to understand the requirements of the APEX Fellowship. 

The intent to apply form must be completed 2 weeks prior to each deadline.
For the Sunday, February 18 deadline, the form must be submitted by February 4.
For the Sunday, April 7 deadline, the form must be submitted by March 25.

If the intent to apply form is completed with less than two weeks prior to the February 18 deadline, applications will be considered for the April 7 deadline.

No. You only need to fill out the Intent To Apply form once, regardless of if you missed the first application deadline. This allows us to connect you with a peer advisor.

By utilizing this intent to apply form, we are ensuring that everyone who is interested in applying has the information needed to best complete the application. This is done to reduce errors and mistakes on applications and to make sure students have all the information they need in order to understand the requirements of the APEX Fellowship. 

Questions about Purpose and Structure

An APEX Fellowship is a funded, mentored experience with College of Wooster faculty, regular reflective check ins, .25 credit on fall transcript, and public presentations in the fall semester.  

The APEX Fellowship is developed as an educative experience using best practices as defined by the  National Society for Experiential Education (NSEE), including goal setting, orientation and training, weekly reflection, and meeting with a faculty mentor.  

Questions about Eligibility

Rising sophomores, juniors and seniors in all majors can apply. APEX Fellows may not be on academic probation and must maintain good standing under The College of Wooster’s Codes of Academic Integrity and Social Responsibility. Students must also be enrolled at The College of Wooster or in a Wooster-endorsed off-campus study program the semesters preceding and following the Fellowship.  

APEX Fellowships support unpaid or underpaid (that is, wages or stipends less than the amount of the awards) summer internships or vocational exploration programs. We support students who do immersive work, are given meaningful tasks, and can perform a variety of capacities and with a mixture of employees. While some tasks may be mundane, the majority should demand professional responsibility. Host sites must provide a supervisor to regularly monitor the student’s progress and give feedback.  

The College of Wooster is now offering community-based internships to be completed in the greater Wooster and Wayne County. Please talk to an Experiential Learning Staff member to learn more.

Students can complete an APEX Fellowship in the United States or in other countries. All international countries outside of the student’s home country will be reviewed for State Department Travel Advisories prior to acceptance.

All students completing an APEX Fellowship outside the US must have at least 6 months remaining on your passport before returning to the U.S., otherwise, it must be renewed.  

This experience must not begin before the Monday of graduation and must conclude on or before the Friday before classes resume.  

APEX Fellowships do not support some summer research, including I.S. research, credit-bearing academic programs, travel programs, work for the student’s family enterprise, or under the direct supervision of a family member. 

APEX uses the definition of authenticity* the NSEE details in its Eight Principles of Good Practice for All Experiential Learning Activities to evaluate what type of research we will support. If you have questions about whether your proposed summer experience qualifies, please speak with Experiential Learning staff in APEX before applying. See below for examples.

Example 1: Chemistry / Biochemistry & Molecular Biology

30 Word Summary: As an undergraduate researcher at Michigan State University, I will study transcriptional enhancers of the insulin receptor using molecular biology techniques and educate local children on different science topics weekly.

Applied Component: One issue that has become prevalent in recent years is a disparity of knowledge in the scientific field among individuals with different backgrounds. Part of my summer experience will be spent attempting to combat this with the “Biochemistry in the Community” program, where college students teach 9–13- year-old children in public housing about different science topics. I will create age-appropriate scientific curriculum, development of appreciation for diversity in the workplace, and gain professional skills to navigate systematic bias and racism. This will allow me to become better at communicating complex scientific topics to a diverse audience.

Example 2: Anthropology

30 Word Summary: As the research intern for the Natural History Museum at the Smithsonian Institution in Washington D.C., I will examine original ethnographic collections and develop research bibliographies for future publication.

Applied Component: This internship at the Smithsonian provides me with a behind the scenes look at the documentation and research of artifacts, which will later be shown to visitors. I will be a part of transcribing documents that have been archived, improving documentation, organizing data, writing bibliographies, and the publication of the results. I will have the chance to interact with visitors to the Asian collections to gain a better understanding of the overall process of the curatorial experience.

*NSEE definition of authenticity: The experience must have a real world context and/or be useful and meaningful in reference to an applied setting or situation. This means that is should be designed in concert with those who will be affected by or use it, or in response to a real situation.

APEX Fellowships are intended to support students while gaining professional experience. Remote internships that meet this criteria may be considered. Additionally, students must demonstrate they have the available environment and technology to complete the work.  

No. To be considered for funding, all proposals must have confirmed positions by the application deadline. This includes actual internship site placements promised by third party providers. Although some organizations say they notify acceptances of summer internships after our deadlines, often they will respond sooner if told about the fellowship program and due dates.  

All application materials, including recommendations and internship agreement, must be submitted by the deadline to be eligible for funding.

If you are completing an internship that is a required and embedded component of a course or program, you are not eligible for the APEX Fellowship. However, if you are participating in an internship that is optional or added on to the program you’re participating in, your internship could qualify. Talk to EL Staff for more details.

The APEX Fellowship is a competitive application process; we are usually unable to fund every request we receive. In general, we can fund 50-55 students annually, but that number can vary year to year depending on the type of applications we receive. In order to ensure a strong and accurate, application, meet with Experiential Learning staff and peer advisors to receive feedback on the application process, your application materials, and any questions you may have.

Questions about Travel

1. If you internships is on site at a location different than your home, you can apply for travel to get to and from your internship site.
2. You can apply for travel funding to your internship site from the College or from your home, whichever costs less.

1. We do not fund travel to return to your home, even if your internship is at home.
2. Commuting costs.
3. Remote internships are not eligible for travel funds.

Questions about Funding

Twice. Students can apply for a second fellowship and will only be considered for the second application pool after first time applicants are considered. If you need help finding funding for an internship, please meet with the Experiential Learning team. Second time applicants must also demonstrate growth in the internship opportunity and responsibilities. 

If your organization provides compensation less than what the Fellowships offer (up to $2475 for 6 weeks or $3300 for 8 weeks) you may apply for funding to make up the difference. For example, if you receive a $1000 stipend for a 6 week program, you can receive $1225. As a recipient of APEX funds, you will be required to participate fully in all expectations of APEX Fellows. 

You will receive your funds (minus $300) as a lump sum in May. The last $300 is awarded in the fall after completing all assignments and reports.

Up to ten students will be named Andrew Fellows and will receive an additional $500 for demonstrating excellence in the application process after the cohort of APEX Fellows has been selected. Applicants will be evaluated on:
– Advising meetings with Experiential Learning staff throughout the application process
– Quality of résumé
– Demonstration of communication with reference writers
– Quality of extended answers on the application
– Quality of LinkedIn profile
– Demonstration of interview preparation
– Follow up with the interview committee 

For details on being considered for this additional award, please see Experiential Learning staff in APEX.

Please note that students are only able to receive this award once.

Possibly. This depends on how much you have earned in the tax reporting year. For specific questions, consult your tax advisor for answers. You are responsible for reporting the monies to the IRS.

Selection Criteria

The Selection Committee will appraise proposals for:
– Strength of connection to academic interests
– Strength of connection to personal and professional experiences and interests
– Level of authentic responsibilities, opportunities for growth, student safety, and supervision provided in proposed internship/program
– Depth of the vocational exploration questions you seek to examine
– Clarity of goals and measurable outcomes you propose
– Strength of your personal recommendations

Experiential Learning Peer Advisors, APEX professional staff, and Faculty Mentors.

Additional Information for International Students

– You must meet with the International Student Coordinator in the Center for Diversity and Inclusion to make sure you understand and comply with all regulations related to your visa. 
– You must have had full-time student status in the U.S. for a full academic year before you do your internship. 
– If you have not worked in the U.S. before, you will need to apply for a Social Security Number (SSN) once you have an employment letter.  You must have a SSN before you can receive any fellowship monies.
– The experience must be tied to your major. You must apply for Curricular Practical Training (CPT) and ask your department chair to sign the CPT form to verify your experience relates to your major. As an APEX Fellow, you receive academic credit with your award, therefore you do not need to apply for or pay for a summer internship credit. 
– You must have a US bank account in order to receive your funds.

– Make sure your U.S. visa is valid upon return, otherwise, you must renew it before you return to the U.S.
– Have at least 6 months remaining on your passport before returning to the U.S., otherwise, it must be renewed.

You could have as much as 30% withheld from your grant. If you have specific questions about the amount of tax withholding, please confer with Student Employment.

Application Advice

See our SMART Goal resource for advice on how to create a SMART goal.