Three Minute Thesis sets the stage for a showcase of graduate student research

A person stands behind a podium and speaks to an audience, some of whom are visible in the foreground of the photo. Next to the speaker is a large red banner that says Graduate School. Behind them, a visual aid for the presentation is projected onto a screen.
Graduate student Ceci Volbrecht presents at the 2022 UW–Madison Three Minute Thesis final competiton in the H.F. DeLuca Forum of the Discovery Building. During Three Minute Thesis competitions, graduate students explain their research to a lay audience in just three minutes or less.

Twelve graduate students from across campus will compete in the UW­–Madison Three Minute Thesis final competition on Friday, Feb. 17.

Three Minute Thesis (3MT), which began at the University of Queensland in Australia, is an international research communication competition that challenges students to explain their research to an audience without specialized knowledge in their field – all in three minutes or less. Students who compete in 3MT have a chance to hone their presentation and research communication skills while also competing for cash prizes and a people’s choice award.

The competition came to UW–Madison in 2015, hosted by the Graduate School Office of Professional Development and Graduate Women in Science (GWIS). Students in research-based master’s and doctoral programs are eligible to compete.

In the 2020-21 academic year, as interest among competitors increased, the competition grew to include a semifinal round. In recent years, graduate program coordinators have also helped to organize the semifinal and final competitions, broadening participation across the university for this campus-wide event.

A man wearing a suit, tie, and face mask addresses a crowd from behind a podium. Next to him is a large banner that says Graduate School.
Graduate School Dean William J. Karpus welcomes the competitors and audience to the 2022 Three Minute Thesis final competition.

This year, the finalists who advanced from November’s semifinal competition will represent all four divisions at the university. The 12 finalists include students across the biological sciences, physical sciences, social sciences, and the arts and humanities. With such a wide range of competitors, the upcoming Three Minute Thesis finals are a great chance to hear about exciting and impactful research happening every day at UW–Madison.

The Three Minute Thesis final competition is free to attend and open to the public. The following graduate students will compete in the final:

  • Adam D’Angelo, Plant Breeding and Plant Genetics
  • Amelie Dolfi, Wildlife Ecology
  • Taqdeer Gill, Horticulture
  • Daniel Hayden, Plant Pathology
  • Rachel Hutchins, Communication Arts
  • Brianna Lafoon, History
  • Vijit Maithel, Atmospheric and Oceanic Sciences
  • Princess Merenini, Chemistry
  • Kaitlin Moore, English
  • Ebony Taylor, Entomology
  • Hridyesh Tewani, Civil and Environmental Engineering
  • Sarah Waldfogel, Economics

The winner of the final competition will also have the chance to compete in the regional competition at the annual Midwest Association of Graduate Schools (MAGS) meeting in March

Three Minute Thesis Finals

Friday, Feb. 17
10 am – noon
Hector F. DeLuca Forum, Discovery Building
Registration for audience members appreciated but not required