James R. Parks Fellowship

Established through a gift from Whittier College Trustee James R. Parks, The James R. Parks Fellowship aims to inspire talented students to pursue a career in business and to provide a scholarship to replace loans with grant funding, thereby helping to reduce students' loan burden.

They are to be awarded to students who, in the judgment of the faculty, exhibit a "substantial spark" revealing outstanding potential as a leader in the business community upon graduation. Successful applicants will demonstrate drive, energy, and motivation, which may be indicated through a variety of traditional and non-traditional qualities. Parks Prizes may be awarded to first years and sophomores who have declared or intend to declare a major in Business Administration. Preference will be given to students who have shown an aptitude for and interest in accounting and/or students with financial need. 

Eligibility Criteria

  • First-Year or Sophomore standing
  • Major in Business Administration

Selection Criteria

  • Demonstrate either academic ability in financial disciplines or demonstrated leadership skills on campus. Applicants must have taken and done well in relevant courses by the end of the spring semester during which he/she is chosen for the award.
  • The ability to conduct and complete the proposed research project, internship, or experience.
  • The fit between the project and the student’s academic and/or professional goals.
  • If traveling abroad is part of the proposal, the ability to engage in study abroad.
  • Preference will be given to students with financial need and/or first-generation college students who will garner significant business experience and benefit in other ways from exposure to a professional work environment. 
  • Semi-finalists will be interviewed, if the committee elects to do so. 

Parks Fellowship Benefits

  • A stipend of $3,500.00 to participate in an unpaid or low-paid internship.
  • Upon completion of the project, a scholarship $3,500 will be applied towards tuition or granted as a stipend if the student has “no financial need”.

Application Items

  • Unofficial academic transcripts
  • Current semester Academic Progress Report.
  • Student Contract with project mentor sign-off.
  • A written letter of support from a faculty member
  • A reference contact from someone outside of the applicants major and project’s area of focus. This can be a Faculty member or when applicable a personal reference (e.g., employer, internship supervisor, volunteer coordinator).
  • A 500-word essay explaining how you became interested in the project, why you want this fellowship opportunity, how you will benefit from the fellowship both personally and professionally, and what personal qualities (skills, attributes, and/or abilities) you possess that will ensure a successful fellowship experience. 
  • A 1000-word essay tell us about yourself, and explain why you have declared (or intend to declare) Business Administration as your major, what your future professional goals are, and how you will benefit from the Parks Fellowship, both personally and professionally.
  • Selected semi-finalists may be interviewed. 

Fellowship Advisors

Professor Lana Nino

Professor Fatos Radoniqi

Past Parks Fellows

Bryan Martinez
Berenice Lamas
Aaron Shreve
Karsten Torres
Charay Cash
Alex Shin
Cody Allman