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Mentors play a key role in the success of a student’s participation in the Undergraduate Research Symposium. This means that it’s very important that students keep their mentor(s) informed about the ways they will need to be engaged. We recognize that many students have multiple mentors, including a faculty mentor, graduate student mentors, and mentors that are research staff or post-doctoral researchers. That’s great! Students are required to have at least one faculty mentor but can list additional mentors on their application as well.

Here are expectations of mentors: 

Support Abstract and Artist Statements (review and approval)

      • Each student will be asked to upload an abstract or artist statement when they submit their Symposium application. We expect that mentors will support students through the writing process. Students and mentors can use our guidelines to compose abstracts or artist statements that are thoughtful and appropriate for this event. 
      • After the student submits their abstract or creative statements, mentors will be asked to approve each student’s abstract (the application cannot move forward without at least one faculty mentor’s approval). It is much easier for mentors to help students compose their materials before they are submitted than it is to make changes during the approval stage. 
      • All accepted student abstracts will be published in the Symposium Online Proceedings. Research mentors will be listed along with their students’ abstracts in the Proceedings and will be acknowledged at the presentation sessions.

Supporting Presentations

      • We expect that mentors will help students prepare their presentations. This may include mapping out poster design, helping a student practice their oral presentation or performance, or helping the student think through appropriate materials for a design presentation. Many students practice their presentations and get feedback during research team meetings, for example. 


      • We hope that mentors will consider volunteering at the Symposium! Each oral presentation session will have a faculty moderator. Please email us at if your faculty mentor is willing to moderate a session. We do our best to ensure faculty can moderate the session that their mentee is presenting in. We hope that additional mentors, including graduate students, will consider volunteering as session assistants or in other important volunteer roles. 
      • View our volunteer opportunities here.