CMI Scholars

CMI Scholars

Program Background:

The FIGURE Network is a not-for-profit association of French universities that has accredited more than one hundred “Cursus Master en Ingénierie” (CMI) in different domains related to product and service engineering. CMI is a selective, 5-year program, based on innovative training including projects and internships, with strong links with research organizations. The participants are awarded a master's degree from their own French university plus a CMI label jointly delivered by the university and the network. International mobility (at least 3 months, 6 months or a semester recommended) is compulsory in order to get the label.

Recognizing the excellent quality and breadth of related research at the Big Ten universities, as well as an overall interest in creating global opportunities for all students, FIGURE has partnered with the Big Ten Academic Alliance to create IREP and place CMI scholars at interested Big Ten universities.

Universities participating in the Spring and Summer 2024 IREP 

Program Details:

  • This program is only open to CMI-seeking scholars enrolled in a FIGURE Network-affiliated campus. The purpose of this program is to assist CMI scholars seeking to fulfill their international mobility requirement. Please visit the FIGURE Network website for more information.
  • Research opportunity positions are short-term, non-credit bearing, and unpaid.
  •  Individual scholars are financially responsible for travel, housing, and living costs. Scholars are not expected to pay any tuition to the Big Ten Academic Alliance host university.

Application Process

Interested scholars must complete an online application by the deadline. Please note that it will take approximately 30 minutes to complete the application and once you begin the application, you cannot return to it at a later time. You must complete the application in one sitting. Therefore, plan accordingly and have the following information available to you for inclusion:

  • Basic Contact Information
  • Copy of  Curriculum Vitae
  • Copy of Academic Transcript (this document should include a listing of all academic courses completed to date).
  • Statement of Research Interest (500-word limit): Information that you may wish to consider includes:
    • Description of your research interests and why those areas are of importance and interest to you;
    • Information about any prior research experiences, including a description of the project, the problem(s) that was being addressed, research methodologies used, and the scholar’s roles and responsibilities in conducting the research;
  • Personal Statement (500-word limit): Information that you may wish to consider includes:
    • Description of your personal and academic goal;
    • Statement of your motivation for seeking a research experience;
    • Explanation of how this research opportunity will help you to advance your goals.
  • Name of faculty with whom the applicant is seeking a research experience (required for some universities). Participating universities request that applicants do not contact faculty or universities directly to discuss the program or seek placements before or during the application process. Doing so may jeopardize possible placement. Instead, applicants can find faculty and/or labs of interest via online research and/or by talking to their own faculty members for recommendations.

Student Responsibilities:

  • Research and identify faculty and departments at participating Big Ten Host Universities with whom you are interested in having a research experience. 
  • Respond to all communications related to the IREP placement process in a timely manner. Inaction to do so may result in scholar's removal from the application process an/or IREP program.
  • Participate in the IREP Student Placement Process following submission of an IREP application:
    • After receiving notification from the Big Ten Academic Alliance headquarters office regarding the university interested in possibly hosting you, confirm with the Big Ten Academic Alliance whether you will pursue a placement with that university by the deadline set forth in the International Research Experience Program (IREP) Timeline. For scholars with multiple universities expressing interest, you must indicate your preferred placement location as part of your confirmation.
  • Obtain and pay for housing accommodations for the period of the IREP placement. Host universities may inform matched IREP scholars of potential housing options, but participants have the ultimate responsibility to identify, obtain and pay for housing.
  • File any required visa applications as part of the IREP program. Participants may be assessed visa processing fees, according to the institutional policies of the host institution.
  • Participate in all on-site orientations for IREP scholars on host university policies, local rules and regulations, and cultural norms.
  • Communicate with the host university and your home university during negotiation of all aspects of the placement.
  • Comply with the Big Ten universities' policies and procedures to memorialize and finalize the research opportunities placement.
  • If a CMI scholar determines that they will not be able to complete or are no longer interested in pursuing a research opportunities placement, the scholar must immediately notify the program administrators at both the Big Ten Academic Alliance university and the FIGURE Network university.


Additional Information for CMI Scholars placed in an IREP Placement:

  • Host institutions may require that scholars attest to the fact that they have the resources to cover all required expenses including, visa, travel, room, board, health insurance, living expenses and other incidental expenses for the course of the internship.
  • Host universities may require that scholars purchase health insurance under the host university’s student insurance program or demonstrate that they have comparable health insurance coverage and complete a waiver.
  • Host university staff supporting the program are happy to assist scholars; however, they are unable to advise or give assistance to individuals not affiliated with the IREP program. Therefore, if you bring someone with you to your host university, they cannot assist with visa or other required paperwork or employment. It is the responsibility of that individual to make his/her/their own arrangements.
  • Host universities have the sole responsibility and authority to set and implement policies, guidelines and procedures governing the conduct of scholars working at their universities. FIGURE Network scholars participating in a research internship will be required to comply with US state and federal laws, as well as the rules and regulations of the host Big Ten Academic Alliance university. Any breach of university rules and regulations will be dealt with in accordance with the established policies and procedures of the university, including disciplinary and withdrawal provisions. The host university shall have the sole discretion and right to terminate a student’s internship at an early date. Prior to exercising this sole right, the host university will consult with the scholar’s home university. Neither the Big Ten Academic Alliance, the FIGURE Network, nor their member institutions will be held responsible for the individual actions of participating scholars.
  • Host universities are expected to subscribe to a policy of equal opportunity and non-discrimination on the basis of gender, age, race, ethnicity, national origin, sexual orientation, or religion.