Applied Research Consortium


Applied Research Consortium FAQs

What are the eligibility criteria for an ARC Fellowship?

ARC seeks an excellent and diverse cohort of Fellows. The criteria for nomination are:

  • Enrolled in a master or PhD-level program at CBE
  • Curious, motivated, resourceful, organized, and capacity for leadership
  • Top 20% of their peers for the criteria above as judged by faculty (or top 5% if nominated prior to enrollment)
  • Expressed or demonstrated interest in applied research
  • Ability to communicate verbally and in writing at a professional level
  • Since ARC graduates are more likely to become leaders in their fields, ARC prioritizes recruitment of students who identify as a member of groups currently underrepresented in their fields

How are ARC Fellows nominated?

There are four pathways to nomination for an ARC Fellowship:

Nomination prior to enrollment

  • Nomination by faculty, chair, or dean at the student’s undergraduate institution
  • Nomination by CBE department admissions committee

Nomination after enrollment

  • Autumn and early Winter: Nomination by faculty or department for the following academic year
  • Late Winter and Spring: Nomination by faculty or department of students whose interests align with specific projects proposed by ARC firms, for the following academic year

If you are already enrolled in a CBE graduate program and are interested in conducting an ARC Fellowship in Year Two (or Year Three, if applicable) of your graduate degree program, and you feel that you meet the eligibility requirements, inform your department chair or a faculty member who knows you well that you are interested in being nominated.

If you are a prospective student interested in participating, you should first apply to one of the CBE graduate programs and indicate in your statement of purpose that you are interested in applied research and ARC. (For information on programs, see the specific department application sites.) If you feel that you meet the eligibility requirements, you may also ask a faculty member, department chair, or dean at your undergraduate institution to nominate you prior to your application to UW. Nominations should be sent to Teri Randall, Program Director, Community Engagement, If you are nominated through this pathway, you must still apply to a CBE graduate program through the regular application process.

How are Fellows and faculty matched with firms?

The matching process starts in late February in the year prior to the ARC Fellowship. ARC member firms propose projects that support the research interests of the firm. The ARC program then shares these proposals with the nominated ARC Fellows. It also consults with faculty and department chairs to identify other graduate students who have demonstrated a passion for applied research and for the specific topic area. Once a tentative match is made between the firm/project/student, the ARC program identifies a faculty member with expertise in the topic to serve as faculty advisor.

Because the ARC Fellowship involves a paid internship at the firm, the next step requires the ARC Fellow candidate to interview with the firm. Once the firm approves the ARC Fellow hire, then the match is made official.

The timeline for matching Fellows to firms for the 2023-2024 academic year is as follows:

  • Firms submit proposals to ARC: by Friday, Feb 24, 2023
  • Proposals distributed to ARC Fellows, CBE faculty/departments: Feb 27
  • ARC Open House, Friday, March 31, 8-9 a.m., zoom
  • Informal discussions between firms and Fellows: April
  • Fellows interview at firms: May
  • Firms confirm matches: by Friday, June 2, 2023

What degree programs do ARC Fellows come from?

ARC Fellows can be selected from all five departments within the College of Built Environments: Architecture, Construction Management, Landscape Architecture, Real Estate, and Urban Design and Planning. Eligible degree programs include:

Master of Architecture (M Arch)
Master of Science in Architecture (Design Computing/Design Technology)
Master of Science in Architecture (History and Theory)
Master of Science in Construction Management
Master of Landscape Architecture (MLA)
Master of Science in Real Estate
Master of Urban Planning (MUP)
Dual M Arch / MLA
Dual MLA / MUP
PhD in the Built Environment
PhD in Urban Design and Planning

What is the duration of an ARC Fellowship?

Most ARC Fellowships last one full academic year (three quarters) and start in Autumn quarter in the second year of the student’s degree program. However, ARC Fellowships can range between two and six quarters and can start later in the academic year.

ARC participation during summer sessions is optional and the level of engagement may vary; the summer stipend and benefits are negotiated on an individual basis.

Additional FAQs from Students

What are the advantages of an ARC Fellowship?

ARC Fellows have the unique opportunity to lead an applied research project with an ARC firm, explore current issues in the built environment, gain professional experience, and create research results that will lead to broad impact across the consortium and the industry.

What is the time commitment for the student?

In the year prior to the ARC Fellowship: Candidates for ARC Fellowships are encouraged to take BE 598 C, Equitable Practice and Intercultural Skills, a 1-credit seminar, prior to their Fellowship. ARC Fellow candidates are also encouraged to attend the quarterly consortium meetings / project reviews.

During the ARC Fellowship: ARC Fellows have a paid internship at an ARC member firm for 15 hours per week, during which they take the lead on an applied research project. Fellows also take a 3-credit independent study each quarter, working under the guidance of an ARC faculty advisor, which represents an additional 9 hours. The internship and independent study combined result in a time commitment of 24 hours per week on average.

What are the financial benefits?

The ARC Fellow and firm negotiate the wage for the paid internship, which is 15 hrs/week. In addition to the paid internship, the ARC Fellow receives:

  • Quarterly stipend of $3600
  • Exemption from the Non-Resident Tuition Fees Differential (NRD) (applicable for Fellows paying out-of-state tuition)
  • Health insurance through the UW Graduate Appointee Insurance Program (GAIP)

How will an ARC fellowship look on my résumé?

ARC on your resume demonstrates your ability to take the lead on an applied research project in your field and deliver professional-quality presentations and reports. It also demonstrates soft skills such as working collaboratively in teams, and keeping a long-term, multi-phased project on track.

What happens to intellectual property created during my research project?

“Intellectual Property” (or “IP”) means rights in any inventions, discoveries, patents, or works of authorship. It is unlikely that a commercializable idea will arise from an ARC research project. In the event that it does, the ARC program will work with CoMotion to form an appropriate agreement.

“Project Property” means IP arising out of and directly related to performance of the project, excluding scholarly publications, presentations, theses and dissertations. For Project Property you own personally, the ARC Fellow grants to UW and to the ARC firm partner a paid-up, royalty-free, non-exclusive, worldwide right to use such Project Property for any purpose, including but not limited to the sub-licensable right to make, use, sell, import, display, reproduce, create derivative works, distribute, and perform such Project Property. Excluded from this license are scholarly works for which you must assign copyright ownership to a publisher.

Note that regardless of IP ownership, the work will be cited with your authorship, with appropriate citation to the faculty advisor and firm advisor. You can use the work in your résumé and your portfolio.

Additional FAQs from Firms

Who should I talk to if my firm is interested in joining ARC?

If you are interested in joining ARC, please contact Alex Haslam with CBE’s Office of Advancement,

What is the required contribution for firms?

ARC firms provide an annual gift to support the program’s students, faculty and operations; in addition, ARC firms hire the student fellows as interns during the course of the ARC project. To learn about gift levels, please contact Alex Haslam with CBE’s Office of Advancement,

How does the value of participating in the ARC program differ from the value of hiring an intern from the College of Built Environments?

The Applied Research Consortium provides firms with a more robust research experience than a traditional internship. ARC provides the unique opportunity to engage with a community of industry peers, UW faculty, and students who learn from each other through their research projects, and co-create ideas and discussions that serve to drive the future of the built environment. Through quarterly research reviews, full access to research results, and the opportunity to shape the scholarship agenda of ARC, firms are together building the research culture of the industry in a way that singular internships cannot. Additionally, ARC Fellows receive specific training in interdisciplinary collaboration and intercultural competence, and are often hired by ARC firms as they demonstrate their value and leadership through the Fellowship. However, there is certainly value in bringing in a dedicated intern, depending on the goals of the firm. We are happy to talk this through with you.