Computer Science Student Wins Second Annual 3MT® Competition


Posted on March 19, 2015 by Alice Jackson
Alice Jackson


Winners were announced from USA's 2nd Annual 3MT® Competition held Wednesday, March 18. They are, from left, Lindsey Whitehurst, computer science; runner-up Selena Jackson, psychology; and Peoples’ Choice Winner Michael Hempowicz, mechanical engineering. They are congratulated by Dr. B. Keith Harrison, dean of the Graduate School and associate vice president for academic affairs. data-lightbox='featured'
Winners were announced from USA's 2nd Annual 3MT® Competition held Wednesday, March 18. They are, from left, Lindsey Whitehurst, computer science; runner-up Selena Jackson, psychology; and Peoples’ Choice Winner Michael Hempowicz, mechanical engineering. They are congratulated by Dr. B. Keith Harrison, dean of the Graduate School and associate vice president for academic affairs.

Lindsey Whitehurst, a computer science major, won the top prize Wednesday, March 18, in USA’s 2nd Annual 3MT® Competition.

Whitehurst won with a three-minute presentation on “Enhanced Software Security through Programming Partitioning.” Her mentor was Dr. Todd Andel, associate professor of computing. She was one of 10 graduate students to compete in the 22nd Annual Spring Research Forum. The competition is part of the annual USA Faculty Development Council’s Research Forum presentation and poster session.

Runner-up was Selena Jackson, a psychology major, who presented “Examining Emotion Regulation, Perspective Taking, and Types of Aggression in the Context of Adolescent Dating Relationships.” Her mentor was Dr. Jennifer Langhinrichsen-Rohling. The Peoples’ Choice Award went to mechanical engineering major Michael Hempowicz with “The Impact of Hygrothermal Preconditioning on Mode II Interlaminar Fracture Toughness in Unidirectional Carbon Fiber Reinforced Epoxy Composites: An Experimental Investigation.” His mentor was Dr. Gail Jefferson, assistant professor of mechanical engineering.

Whitehurst will receive $300 while Jackson and Hempowicz will receive $150 each.

Dr. B. Keith Harrison, dean of the Graduate School and associate vice president for academic affairs, said the 3MT® Competition is becoming more popular with students.

“This year we had more than 300 students and faculty members participate,” Harrison said.

The 3MT®, which stands for “three minute thesis,” is growing in popularity at universities in the United States and internationally. Established in 2008 by the University of Queensland in Australia, the 3MT® is a research communication competition. The exercise challenges graduate students to present a compelling oration on their thesis topic and its significance in only three minutes. To be successful in the competition, the students must consolidate their ideas and research discoveries so they can be presented concisely to a non-specialist audience. At every level of the competition, each competitor is assessed on the audience’s comprehension of the material presented and engagement with the presenter.

Other presenters, thesis and mentors:

  • Jodi Myers, sociology, “The Seasonality of Adolescent Offending as a Function of Peer Network Composition,” Dr. Doug Marshall, associate professor of sociology;
  • James Cerkovnik, information systems, “Managing Vulnerabilities and Risk in Network-Capable Medical Devices,” Dr. J. Todd McDonald, associate professor of computing;
  • Joseph Bynum, psychology, “Explorations of Attention and the Flash Grab Effect,” Dr. Timothy Slattery, assistant professor of psychology;
  • Angel Huot, mechanical engineering, “Finite Element Analysis of Arterial Vessel Wall Stiffness,” Dr. Saami Yazdani, assistant professor of mechanical engineering;
  • Brian Klimek, marine sciences, “Linking Ciguatoxicity to Life History and Ecology of Red Lionfish (Pterois volitans) in the Western Atlantic,” Dr. William Patterson III, associate professor of marine sciences, and Dr. Alison Robertson, assistant professor of marine sciences;
  • Levi Shiverdecker, psychology, “Does Narcissism Moderate the Influence of Sexual Activity on Pair-Bonding?” Dr. Joshua Foster, associate professor of psychology;

For more information on the 3MT® Competition, visit http://bit.ly/1Er1pmN.


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