Program Requirements

Eligibility criteria

A student must meet these criteria to apply for the SPARK Program:

  • Be enrolled as a junior or senior at a school in Duval County or St. Johns County in Florida for the upcoming academic year.
  • Have a minimum 3.5 unweighted grade-point average.
  • Be serious about the time commitment required for SPARK mentorship.

Program expectations

Once accepted into SPARK, scholars must meet these program requirements:

  • Orientation. All students must be available on the first week of June to attend the mandatory orientation and training — no exceptions will be given.
  • Time commitment. All students are expected to spend a minimum of 25 hours in the lab during the summer to work on their research projects.
  • Projects. When school is in session, students and mentors determine a flexible schedule to complete their research projects.
  • Competitions.
    • Students must compete in either the Northeast Florida Regional Science and Engineering Fair (NEFRSEF) or the St. Johns County Secondary STEM Fair.
    • Students who attend a school within the Duval County Public Schools (DCPS) district must also submit their projects to the DCPS Secondary Science Fair, which is typically held each January.
    • If regional projects are selected, students are expected to compete in state and international science fairs.