The Graduate Candidate Identification System (GCIS)
The idea of developing a database of eligible undergraduates in the State University System (SUS) of Florida Board of Governors for recruitment into graduate programs first surfaced at the initial meeting of the Graduate Admissions Task Force in 2000. Members felt that such a database could be a valuable tool in enhancing diversity in the graduate programs in the SUS. They also believed that a database could make the recruitment of all students more efficient and effective. At the request of the Office of Academic and Student Affairs of what was then called the Division of Colleges and Universities, the Center for Information Management & Educational Services at Florida State University was tasked with developing and maintaining the Graduate Candidate Identification System (GCIS). The GCIS included all SUS undergraduates across all majors with a minimum GPA of 2.80 who had earned a minimum of 72 credit hours with several fields of identifying information (i.e. major, GPA range, race, gender, e-mail address, local/permanent addresses, telephone numbers, etc.). Only institutions providing information into the database were eligible to search the database.
In November 2019, the SUS Florida Board of Governors announced that they would no longer be involved with the Graduate Candidate Identification System (GCIS) or the management of user logins. The sole possession and management of the GCIS was assumed to be administered by FSU’s Center for Information Management and Educational Services (CIMES) staff who have been managing the database since its creation. Despite multiple requires, CIMES did not receive any budget or fiscal appropriations for the creation and management of GCIS from 2000 to 2019.
In March of 2021, the Director of CIMES called a meeting of all Public University representatives currently using the GCIS (registrars, graduate school, admissions, recruiting staff, etc.). The decision was to create a GCIS State Committee to discuss the future of GCIS for function, role, access, data security, upgrades, cost, graduate recruiting needs, etc. Each Florida University Registrar designated two representatives per institution: the individual responsible for maintaining the integrity of all student data (typically the University Registrar or assignee), and 2) a campus individual well versed in utilizing GCIS and the data for graduate recruitment. The latter could be a director or coordinator of graduate recruitment, Graduate School personnel, an admissions representative, or other university appropriate employee.
On July 23 of 2021, Eleven of the Public Universities in the State of Florida agreed to continue the use of GCIS with an enhanced program. The GCIS program will move forward by contacting all Junior and Senior level undergraduate students across majors with a student “opt-in” portal managed by the CIMES at FSU. All undergraduate students must agree to participate and self-provide their information at a statewide website for full FERPA compliance. Florida public universities agree to market the enhanced GCIS to their undergraduate student population.