How are Fleming Scholars selected?
Each year a committee of OMRF employees, mostly scientists, selects the Fleming Scholars. All complete applications received by the appointed deadline are reviewed by selection committee members. After this initial review, the committee meets to select up to 25 applicants to interview in person, via Skype or phone. Following the interviews, the committee selects as many scholars as there are mentors and funding available. Three or four alternates are named as well.
When are Fleming Scholar selection results available?
The 25 semi-finalists, as well as those not selected, are notified in late February or early March. Then, interviews occur in early to mid-March. Final results are available following the interviews.
What do Fleming Scholars do?
Fleming scholars work in state-of-the-art biomedical research laboratories on individual projects and are supervised by senior members of the OMRF scientific staff. Every effort is made to assign scholars to laboratories conducting research of particular interest to them. The scholars attend weekly seminars as well as occasional social events as a group.
On the final day of the program, scholars give formal scientific seminars outlining the findings of their projects. Parents, teachers, OMRF staff and other guests are invited to attend. Each scholar also writes a scientific paper summarizing his/her summer project. Those papers may be published online and are available to download.
When does the program start?
Fleming Scholars work at OMRF for eight weeks typically in the months of June and July. Their first day is the Monday after Memorial Day.
Where do scholars live?
Housing is provided to eligible scholars at the student apartments located on the University of Central Oklahoma campus. Scholars are assigned in groups of two or four per unit.
What about transportation?
OMRF does not provide transportation to and from work. Group transportation is provided to some social events, but most often, scholars are responsible for their own transportation.
What about meals?
Breakfast is provided at no cost to all scholars every work day morning in the OMRF Research Café . Otherwise, scholars are responsible for their own meals. Lunches may be purchased in the Research Café at the employee discount. Evening meals are the responsibility of each scholar, with the exception of the meals provided at social events.
What do scholars wear?
As a safety precaution, scholars should wear long pants and closed-toed shoes to work. Jeans are acceptable, as are athletic shoes. Lab work can be messy so scholars must dress appropriately and avoid wearing torn clothes, dangling jewelry, etc. Lab coats, safety goggles, and any other necessary protective gear will be provided.
Do scholars have to commit to the full eight weeks?
The Fleming Scholar Program is rigorous and intense. Eight weeks is quite a short time to initiate—and complete—a detailed scientific project. In fact, many scholars find it necessary to return to OMRF in the weeks following the program in order to complete their experiments and put the finishing touches on their papers. An absence of even a few days can make it difficult for a scholar to catch up before the program ends. Therefore, scholars are required to commit in advance to attendance for the entire eight weeks of the program.
May a person apply again if not selected the first time?
As long as the applicant meets the eligibility requirements for the program, he/she may apply to the program for as many years as desired. So, from senior year (high school) to junior year (college), candidates may apply once each year. Many scholars have been selected on their second or even third try, anyone who is unsuccessful the first time is encouraged to apply again.
How many times can someone be a Fleming scholar?
Being a Fleming Scholar is a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity. The program was established with the purpose of affording this unique chance to as many gifted, science-minded students as possible.
When do scholars get paid?
Scholars are paid an hourly rate commensurate with their relevant educational level. Paychecks are distributed the last working day of each month.
What about fun stuff?
While the work is challenging and even, on occasion overwhelming, there is still plenty of fun associated with the Fleming Scholar Program. Scholars are invited into the home of OMRF’s President for dinner and socializing. Other group activities are also arranged for the scholars, such as volunteering and other social events.