UT graduate symposium hopes to grow, inspire students | UToledo News

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UT graduate symposium hopes to grow, inspire students

The Midwest Graduate Research Symposium at The University of Toledo has seen more student involvement every year, but now its planners are thinking bigger than ever.

This year’s event will take place Saturday, April 20, from 8 a.m. to 7:30 p.m. in the Memorial Field House. Students at the graduate and postdoctoral levels from multiple disciplines and universities throughout the Midwest will give oral and poster presentations of their research.

“One of the reasons this event is unique is because it’s multidisciplinary and multi-university,” said Aaron Shaw, secretary of the Graduate Student Association on UT’s Health Science Campus.

Last year, 24 schools were invited to send students to the event, which yielded 185 presentations. This year 62 schools were invited and students from Ohio State University, Purdue University, the University of Michigan and many others have submitted abstracts for presentations.

The symposium is run by UT’s Graduate Student Association, which has expanded the event every year since taking the helm in 2009. It originally was known as the Toledo Graduate Forum, which was limited to UT students.

The association’s goal for this event is to make it the go-to graduate symposium in the Midwest and positively brand UT in the process. Last year, the Graduate Student Association proposed this idea to University administrators, who invested in the event, making it funded through the institution rather than sponsors, and tying the two entities together.

This year, the conference will feature free breakfast, lunch and semi-formal dinner for all who register. The keynote speaker will be Dr. Alan Shaw, chief executive officer and president of Vedantra Pharmaceuticals Inc., who will receive an award at the event.

Awards also are given to two students in each area of interest — one oral presentation and one poster presentation. Presentations are judged by faculty from various universities.

Graduate and postdoctoral students may register to present here before Friday, March 29; postdoctoral students and faculty members also may register to be judges. The same registration site can be used by those who wish to volunteer the day of the event.

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