GHCI 2018 Guidance

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This wiki primarily provides insights into our GHCI scholarship guidance approach, useful application resources and the guidance itself. If you're just getting started to know about GHCI, the scholarship and application process, then you should first look to quickly take a look at our GHCI Wiki. Familiarising yourself with the basic details about the scholarship will help you understand our guidance approach better. You can find the GHCI wiki by googling for "Rethink GHCI".

If you already know about the scholarship, then this guidance is for you.

Let's get started with our Guidance Systems first.

Our Guidance Framework

Wiki

GHCI Wiki

Wiki is our one-stop information platform. That's where we publish all information relevant to the opportunity, in this case, GHCI. Any new information we have on the program (information like an extension in deadline, FAQs and so on), you can expect it to be published in our wiki page. (The one you just located by googling for "Rethink GHCI".

GHCI Guidance Wiki

This wiki for GHCI guidance is where we will publish all our guidance on how you can apply to GHCI scholarship. The kind of guidance you can expect is how you should approach the application, how you can create your resume, fill in the essays, who you must pick as your recommenders and so on.

Do note that this is mostly our perspectives and thoughts evolved from years of experience helping students apply to various programs. To take up on it or not is completely up to you.

It is recommended that you go through these two wiki pages time to time to find any new updated information about GHCI or our guidance.

Previous Winners Interviews

So we believe that when it comes to applying to an opportunity, the experience of previous beneficiaries of the program and their tips come very much handy. This is why we have a list of 2017 GHCI scholarship winners published in our GHCI wiki. Winning applications of few of these winners have also been shared in the wiki.

In an attempt to capture their experiences, we did interviews with few previous winners. These interviews can be found on our YouTube Channel here: You can also find these by googling. How? Just google for "Rethink Youtube GHCI <winner's name>". If we have a video done, it will come up on search.

Peer-learning Community

Last year when we helped students apply to the GHCI scholarship, we explored peer-learning communities where we brought together applicants and previous winners. This time when we interviewed the winners, almost all of them mentioned that those groups were super useful which is why wish to leverage them this time as well.

The learning community is nothing but a telegram group. It is primarily meant to spin off discussions with your peers as well as previous winners and also provide a softer platform for you to clarify your queries.

As soon as a student joins the community, she will have the opportunity to speak with us over an orientation call. This is where we'll discuss how she can apply for GHCI and make use of all our guidance.

Students joining the learning community will receive a rough copy of the main application form in which they can work out their answers and also share among peers for review. They will also receive regular emails from us. These emails will either contain specific guidance on how you can approach the various segments of the application form or important updates about GHCI or our Guidance system.

Until end of the deadline, these applicants will have our support in attending to their queries and refining their application.

How do you join the learning community?

It is pretty simple. You ping our Rethinkbot in telegram. You can find the bot by searching for "Rethinkbot". The bot will then ask you to provide your details. You'll receive an email immediately about the program and our systems along with the link to join the learning community.

v@r

v@r or volunteers@rethinkfoundation.in. Any student can at any point in time write to us with their query and we shall provide a response. Most of your questions will be resolved in the peer-learning community itself. But any time you wish to interact directly with Rethink, v@r is the best option.

Referrals

Almost all previous scholars say that they knew about GHCI from a friend, senior or relative. If we could all intimate at-least one girl about the scholarship, collectively we would have reached a lot of students. This time to set this in motion, we have a system of peer-advocacy in place. If you know any girl pursuing engineering you care about and think would benefit from the scholarship, do let her know about the scholarship by filling in this form <>

Once you do this, we shall write to the student and provide her further guidance to put in a good application.

Get started with your application process

About GHCI, ABI and the scholarship

The first step is to understand more about GHCI,ABI and the scholarship. Getting a broad sense about what happens at the conference and why ABI is hosting the conference would really help you in getting to know about the program hosts and their expectations. Once this is done, the obvious next stage is to familiarise yourself with the details of the scholarship such as the application process, deadline and requirements from your end.

We have all the basic details covered in our GHCI Wiki which you can find by googling for "Rethink GHCI".

We recommend that you go through the wiki and also through the official websites of GHCI and ABI.

Scholar's Experience

Now that you know about the program, you need more contextual information as to what you can really expect at GHCI and what the perks of this scholarship are.

Last year we had 40 scholars from Kerala and they all had a phenomenal experience at GHCI. We have repeatedly heard earlier applicants mention that they have greatly benefited from experiences shared by previous winners. This time, we are doing interviews with the 2017 winners and publishing these videos on Youtube. Watching at least 1-2 interviews would definitely help you understand the program better and get started with your application.

You can locate the links to interviews with previous winners by googling for "Rethink Youtube GHCI <scholar's name>". Do note to replace <scholar's name> with the name of the scholar.

Familiarising with the application

At this stage, you'd take a step closer to the application process by first going through the application itself. This is more of obtaining preliminary information about what is asked of you so that you can start thinking about how you would like to fill in the answers. If you have already signed up for our guidance system, you would have received a copy of the application form. Go ahead, open the application form and go through it.

Creating your checklist

Now that you know what it takes, the next step is to create your checklist. We have a basic version ready for you and can be found in our wiki. You can make a copy of this and edit it to suit your requirements. Essentially, every action that you need to take, small or large needs to go into the checklist so you don't miss out on anything.

Best Practices

At this stage, you're all prepped to start your application. Before you do so, we highly recommend that you read over our best-practices on how you must approach an application form. Here's the article: Generic Application Approach

Guidance Emails

This is the set of Detailed guidance facilitated to all the applicants who have signed up for our Guidance process. Every day from June 14 to the deadline, the students received an email with detailed guidance and these emails have been captured in the blogs below.

  1. Day 0: Let's Get Started
  2. Day 1: Familiarising with the process
  3. Day 2: Beginning your application form
  4. Day 3: Writing your Shitty First Draft
  5. Day 4: Writing your Essays
  6. Day 5: Creating your Resume
  7. Day 6: Your Recommendation Letters
  8. Day 7: Creating your Video Testimonial
  9. Day 8: Conflicts of Interest, Reviewing your Applciation and GHCI Checklist

Resources

Application Checklist --This is a google form that you can fill up regularly to keep track of your status. You will be able to edit this form throughout if you login using the same gmail id that you filled the form with.

Copy of the GHCI Scholarship application --You may use it as a workbook before filling in the actual application form. This is advised since it is easy to edit and share your application draft

Handbook on Recommendation Letters --This handbook contains all that you Recommender needs to know from writing the letter to successfully submitting it on the portal. Feel free to share with your Recommenders.

2017 Application Resources

  1. Application Walkthrough.
  2. Application Walkthrough Video
  3. Application Guide

From Our Blog

  1. Why should you attend GHCI?
  2. Why peer-learning communities matter?
  3. Clarifying GHCI Scholarship Eligibility

FAQ

The GHCI 2018 Scholarship FAQs cover almost all the generic information about the scholarship, including travel and accommodation facilities. You can find the FAQs here.

The following text answers most of the basic questions students have while applying. Do read through to have the most frequently popping up questions answered. Following this text, we have few specific FAQs that we've answered.

About GHCI and the Scholarship

GHCI is India's Largest Women in Tech Conference. At the conference, you can expect to meet and interact with women professionals in computing from various industries. Few highlights of the conference are the Keynote sessions, Career Fair and Speed-mentoring. Few talks at the Conference tagged as "Beginner" are also targeted at students and early career professionals.

The student scholarship is of two types. The fully funded scholarship provides a travel stipend of INR 2,250, accommodation during the scholarship and also the conference pass. The partial scholarship offers only the conference pass and the student is expected to fund her travel and accommodation on her own. All scholars who are residents of Bangalore will not be provided travel or accommodation support.

There is only one application for the scholarship. Based on your application, the GHCI team decides which scholarship you should be awarded (fully funded or partially funded).

Eligibility

The scholarship is targeted at students pursuing UG/PG/Ph.D in computing or closely related fields. This year, students in their final year of study are eligible to apply for the scholarship, i.e the current batch of students who are graduating this year (2018) as well as the following batch of students expected to graduate next year (in 2019) can apply.

If you are a previous scholar, you are not eligible to apply. However, if you were selected to the conference but could not attend last year, you may be considered as eligible.

Application Process

The application process requires you to write 3 essays, Your Resume, Proof of Student Status and at least one recommendation letter from a Faculty Member. There is also an Optional question to submit a video testimonial. To know more about the questions, check the Application Process section above.

Essay Questions

When writing the essay questions, you are required to stick to specific word limits. The application form does not allow you to submit your application if your answers exceed the word limit. Along with each question, a help-text has also been included on what you are expected to focus on in your response. Your answer to the questions should ideally touch upon those points. Do keep in mind to include only information relevant to the program. Your academic achievements, technical skills as well as your leadership skills (projects, research papers, participation in hackathons/workshops/competitions and internships) within college or outside college could be highlighted in your application.

Resume

The Resume you submit should contain information about your experience involving in projects, clubs/societies/councils and community service. If you have a LinkedIn profile and A Personal Blog, it is considered good to include the links to these in your Resume. You are to upload your CV or Resume in .pdf, .doc, or .docx format. The platform does not accept documents in other file types. There is a restriction on the length of your Resume - it must be less than 3 pages. There is no specific Resume style or template that is recommended. You are free to choose a template that suits your style.

Proof of Student Status

You are required to submit proof of your student status. You can either scan your College ID card or click a picture of it. In either case, it must clearly show your name, academic institution and photograph. The file should be in .jpg, .gif or .pdf format and no larger than 1MB. Submitting the copy of a valid college ID is mandatory.

Video Testimonial

The Video Testimonial question is optional. You are required to shoot a video of yourself speaking for 2 to 3 minutes covering a brief introduction about yourself, why you would like to attend GHCI 18 and how you hope to benefit from the experience. You can then upload your video to common video sharing websites such as Youtube, Vimeo or Daily Motion and share the link in your application form. The video need not be of professional quality. You can shoot the video using your phone or laptop camera also. It is recommended that you stick to the content brief and time-limit.

While the question is optional, we strongly recommend that you create a video testimonial. Given that all the application questions have a stringent word-limit of 50 or 100 words, the video testimonial can be leveraged to share your personal experiences that shaped you as a person and how GHCI fits in your story.

Recommendation Letters

You are required to submit at least one recommendation letter from one of your Faculty Members. The maximum number of recommendations you can submit is 2.

It is mandatory that one recommender be a Faculty Member of yours. The other recommender can be a manager/supervisor/team-lead who you have worked with as a part of your Internship or any college club activity. (This information has been verified with the GHCI Team. Read more here)

It is mandatory that you speak to your recommenders and obtain their agreement in recommending you before you submit his/her details in the application form. It is also recommended that you share your application form with the recommenders so they can curate their letters around the points you have highlighted in your application. Upon making a submission, your recommenders will receive an email requesting them to submit the recommendation letter.

When selecting recommenders, we suggest that you pick faculty members who you have most comfort with and also knows you and work well. Preferably someone whose class you have attended or have worked alongside in a project/research publication. You may also provide details of your HoD if you feel that he/she knows you well. While it is recommended that a permanent college faculty recommends you, technically there isn't a problem with an AdHoc/Guest Faculty recommending you if they know you and your work.

Your recommenders are supposed to submit their letters by June 30, 2018. GHCI Team will send them reminders about the deadline and nudge them to submit it but it is solely your responsibility to ensure that they are finally submitted. You can view the status of the recommendations on the application portal (You will know if they have submitted it or not).

Support

The application form can be edited until the deadline. Do also remember to save the application form from time to time using the 'Save Draft' option in it. If all the required fields in the application form are filled, you will be allowed to click on the submit button and make your submission to be considered for the scholarship. If you are not being permitted to submit, then it means there still are some unresolved errors. These errors will be highlighted at the beginning of the application form. Fix them all and you'll be able to submit your application.

Upon submission, you should receive a confirmation email from GHCI Team. The status of your application form will also be updated in the application portal. If both the email and status say that your submission was valid, then it means that GHCI team has received your application successfully.

At any point, if you encounter any technical error or any questions/concerns about the application process, you may write to us at v@r (volunteers@rethinkfoundation.in). If it is something we can offer guidance with, we shall most certainly help out. You also have the option to reach out to the GHCI team directly about your query. You can find their support email in the References section.

Questions

Is there a possibility of the deadline being extended?

There might be, there might not be. We will never know the answer to this question until the GHCI Team announces something. It is recommended that you do not spend time hypothesising the possibility of the deadline being extended and instead focus on working on your application.

My university exams might happen in November. What if the dates of the conference coincide with my exams?

In the event that this happens, you are required to intimate the gHCI Team about your situation. But this is a problem you can deal with later if at all the dates coincide. For now, we recommend that you focus on putting in an application for the scholarship.

What is the selection criteria?

The GHCI Team says: "We use a variety of criteria and try to evaluate each candidate individually. We consider academic achievements, focus on specialization through internships, paper presentations, participation in contests and workshops, projects and other extra -curricular activities."

Source: GHCI 2018 Scholarship FAQ

My university awards CGPA as grade points and not percentage. What do I do?

You University would have specified their method of converting CGPA to Percentage in their handbook/guidelines/website. If you are unable to find the information in either of these sources, do get in touch with your university to understand the conversion formula and use it to convert your grade point to Percentage.

Should I stick to the word limit?

Absolutely yes! For the simple reason that the platform does not allow you to submit your application if your answers exceed the word limit.

I am a first year engineering student. Can I apply to the scholarship?

Only female engineering students graduating in 2018 or 2019 are eligible to apply to the Student Scholarship. We recommend that you wait to be eligible and then apply to the scholarship. Having said that, you can still choose to pay the conference fee and attend it. (The conference tickets are currently not open for purchase.)

I am a previous GHCI scholar. Can I apply again?

If you are a previous scholar and attended the conference, then you are not eligible to apply again this time. If you were selected but you could not attend the conference, then you might be considered eligible if you satisfy all the other eligibility criteria.

How can I reduce the size of my student proof id?

There a number of online platforms that help you resize an image. You may use one of these to reduce the size of your image to less than 1 MB. To find these platforms just google for "Resize image for free"

How can I upload my video on youtube?

Uploading video to YouTube is quite easy. You must create a profile on YouTube and then you can upload videos to your channel. To get more specific information, checkout this tutorial: Uploading video to YouTube

How do I convert my files to pdf format?

There a number of online platforms that help you convert your files to pdf format. Just google for "How do I convert my file to pdf" and you'll get tons of results. Pick one from those and try out. If you are using a google doc, you have the option to download the document in pdf format. On the top left corner of your google doc, you'll find a File option. Click on it and then select the Download as option. From the list, select PDF.

Is it necessary that my recommender be a faculty?

It is necessary that one of your recommenders be a Faculty Member. However, the second recommender can be someone who you've worked with in a professional capacity as a part of your internship, college club or other co-curricular activity. Read more here

My parents might not allow me to attend GHCI. Should I still apply?

We feel that you should definitely apply to the scholarship. Almost all previous winners say that they also felt their parents wouldn't let them go initially. But when they finally got selected to the scholarship, things changed. But now, if you decide to not apply because your parents might not let you go, then the probability of you getting selected to the scholarship is zero. Some chance of getting selected is better than nothing right?