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3 Minute Thesis Challenge Returns to Trent University


Trent graduate students present years of research in just three minutes in fifth annual competition

Monday, March 20, 2017

Representing years of work, a graduate thesis can take up to eight-hours to read in full, but Trent University graduate students competing in the annual Three Minute Thesis competition will have just three minutes and one PowerPoint slide to explain their highly specialized, technical research to a general audience on March 21, 2017 at 7:00 p.m. at Market Hall.  

“To translate intricate and detailed research into a short, easily accessible presentation is a huge and daunting challenge. Our graduate students do such an impressive job, not only in the quality of their research, but in their ability to share it with the audience,” said Dana Capell, academic skills instructor at Trent University. “The Three Minute Thesis competition is always a fun event for the students, judges and the community. It’s a unique opportunity to learn about the graduate student research underway at Trent.”

Contestants are judged on comprehension, engagement, and communication by a panel made up of alumni and community members. Audience members will be asked to vote for the $250 Provost’s People’s Choice Award, and the first and second-place winners also receive cash prizes. The first-place winner will go on to represent Trent University at the provincial finals in April at the University of Waterloo.

Judges for the 2017 competition include: Dr. Rosana Salvaterra, medical officer of Health, Peterborough Public Health; Yvonne Lei ’98, director of Community Development, New Canadians Centre; Linda Whetung, partner at Whetung Law, and Sydney Birrell, director of Peterborough Singers and founder of the James Fund for Neuroblastoma Research.

The Three Minute Thesis (3MT®) is an academic competition developed by The University of Queensland (UQ), Australia for research students.

About Trent University

One of Canada's top universities, Trent University was founded on the ideal of interactive learning that's personal, purposeful and transformative. Consistently recognized nationally for leadership in teaching, research and student satisfaction, Trent attracts excellent students from across the country and around the world. Here, undergraduate and graduate students connect and collaborate with faculty, staff and their peers through diverse communities that span residential colleges, classrooms, disciplines, hands-on research, co-curricular and community-based activities. Across all disciplines, Trent brings critical, integrative thinking to life every day. Today, Trent's unique approach to personal development through supportive, collaborative community engagement is in more demand than ever. Students lead the way by co-creating experiences rooted in dialogue, diverse perspectives and collaboration. In a learning environment that builds life-long passion for inclusion, leadership and social change, Trent's students, alumni, faculty and staff are engaged global citizens who are catalysts in developing sustainable solutions to complex issues. Trent's Peterborough campus boasts award-winning architecture in a breathtaking natural setting on the banks of the Otonabee River, just 90 minutes from downtown Toronto, while Trent University Durham – Greater Toronto Area delivers a distinct mix of programming in the east GTA.


Kate Weersink, media relations & strategic communications officer, Trent University, (705) 748-1011 x6180 or

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