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Three Minute Paper Competition Showcases Undergraduate Research at Trent

Students given just three minutes to present their papers publicly


Forensics student Jackie Trink had always wondered if there were other government agencies that could have a better handle on how to best lift fingerprints from a crime scene.

She knew different agencies in different countries had their own preferences, and they had reasons for them. Climate, for example, can affect evidence differently from one locale to another.

On Thursday, March 9, 2017 at Trent’s Nozhem Theatre, Ms. Trink presented her findings, albeit briefly and under some pressure. She was one of 18 Trent University undergraduate students who took the stage to present their original research in a brief three-minute talk at the third annual Three Minute Paper (3MP) competition. They were all vying for a list of cash prizes, but also notoriety in presenting their work to the public.

Other students competing in the 3MP were challenged with preparing and delivering on topics ranging from predicting major league baseball pitches to seasonal migration of invasive round gobie in the great lakes.

Emily Adams, also a Forensics student and president of Trent’s Forensics Society, took home the top prize and was named the first place winner with her presentation entitled A Better Way to get Science into the Courtroom. She spoke of her research into the way some witnesses testify during a trial and whether the practice needs to be reviewed.

Madeline Porter, Sociology student, was first runner-up and Sabateeshan Mathavarajah, Molecular Biology major, was second runner-up and Audience Choice. Participants' Choice award, voted by the participants, was shared between Dexter Fichuk, Computer Science, and Emily Rose Korfanty, Physics.

A collaboration of the undergraduate colleges, Trent University Durham – GTA, and Academic Skills, the 3MP competition provides students the opportunity to share their work, develop communication skills, and compete for prizes.

“As a primarily undergraduate university, it’s important that Trent University provide forums to showcase the broad range of research that our students are working on,” said Melanie Sedge, Champlain College head and one of the organizers of the event. “The 3MP is a fast-paced, fun event, full of intercollegiate rivalry, and dynamic research presentations.”

Posted on Tuesday, March 14, 2017.

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