McNair Scholars

Symposium Schedule & Session Descriptions

To download a PDF copy of our 2021 GEG Symposium Full Program, please click here.

To download a PDF copy of our At-a-Glance 2021 GEG Symposium Agenda, please click here.

Day 1 – Thursday, April 22, 2021

10 - 11:15 am PST

Day 1 Welcome & Keynote Address

Welcome: Rickey Hall, VP Office of Minority Affairs & Diversity, University Diversity Office, University of Washington

Welcome to the first day of the Gabriel E. Gallardo Research, Student Leadership & Advocacy Symposium! In our Day 1 Welcome Proceedings, Rickey Hall, Vice President of the Office of Minority Affairs & Diversity and University Diversity Officer, kicks us off and gives tribute to the namesake of our Symposium, Dr. Gabriel E. Gallardo.

Keynote Address: Tracy Hilliard, PhD, MPH

Join our Keynote Dr. Tracy Hilliard, PhD, MPH as she gives our first keynote address drawing from her scholarship and professional endeavors to advance racial equity within public health. See her keynote speaker biography to find out more!

11:30 am - 12:30 pm PST

1A Introduction to Research

Workshop Facilitators:

Dr. Sophie Pierszalowski & Qanani Kalil of the UW Undergraduate Research Program

Session Description:

Learn from the UW Undergraduate Research Program (URP) about how you get involved with research, what research can look like (it doesn’t have to be lab or field work!), and why you might want to do research as an undergraduate. It can be intimidating to start searching for and applying to research opportunities, but UW URP will break it down for you about where to start, who to talk to, and what steps you can take either at the UW or at your home institution to try to find research opportunities that are a good match for you, your skills, and your goals. Regardless of experience, everyone who has an interest in conducting research can get involved–so come to this session and see if undergraduate research is for you!

1B UW Graduate Student Panel

Panelists & Moderator:

Maya Esquivido, Master’s of Social Work; Yuliana Flores, PhD in Human-Centered Design & Engineering, MEd; Kyle Johnson, PhD in Computer Science & Engineering; Vicente Arroyos, PhD in Computer Science & Engineering; Dr. Rick Bonus (Moderator), Professor, UW American Ethnic Studies

Session Description:

Learn from current graduate students about what it’s like to be in graduate school. How is it different academically from undergraduate studies? How do you pay for grad school? What are some of the challenges to being in graduate school, and how do you manage or face those challenges, whether that is Imposter Syndrome and academic stresses or moving and trying to build new communities of support? What are the unique opportunities or experiences available in graduate studies that they’re grateful to have had? There will also be an opportunity for an open forum for you to ask whatever questions you might want to know from our panelists!

1C Finding Your Community

Workshop Facilitators:

Nate Panelo, Asst. Director of the UW Samuel E. Kelly Ethnic Community Center & Tia Pinzón, MESA Director at Everett College

Session Description:

University isn’t always the easiest place to navigate, regardless of the size of your school. How do you find and engage with existing community groups and organizations, both inside and outside your academic instituion? Join this session to learn about ways to find community.

1:15 - 2:15 pm PST

2A What is Graduate School?

Workshop Facilitator:

Ashley R. Townes, UW McNair Graduate Student Adviser, Aquatic & Fishery Sciences PhD Student

Session Description:

Thinking about grad school might inspire many questions: What is graduate school and why might I want to do it? What is the difference between a PhD, a Master’s degree, and a professional degree? How can grad school help me meet my career goals and aspirations? Is grad school always $$$ ? Do you have to want to be a professor to get a graduate degree? Come to this session to get introduced to the idea of grad school and see if it’s a pathway you want to explore!

2B Funding Graduate School

Workshop Facilitator:

Robin Chang, UW Office of Merit Scholarships, Fellowships & Awards

Session Description:

Grad school doesn’t have to mean enormous debt! Find out how to find that $$$ to pay for grad school and move you toward your career goals. Learn about various funding sources, from fellowships that fund you and your research projects to scholarships that support you in extending your studies/research/other work internationally (and more).

2C Imposter Syndrome & Sense of Belonging Faculty Panel

Panelists & Moderator:

Dr. LaVerne Gray, School of Information Sciences, Syracuse University; Dr. Antentor Hinton Jr., Dept. of Molecular Physiology & Biophysics, Vanderbilt University; Leah Justina Anyanwu, School of Education, Harvard University; Dr. Elsie Spencer, Teacher’s College, Columbia University; Dr. Haysetta Shuler, Dept. of Biological Sciences, Winston-Salem University; Dr. Tam’ra-Kay Francis (Moderator), Post-Doctoral Fellow, UW Chemistry, & Founder of PR2ISM

Session Description:

Imposter syndrome is real, but what it’s telling you about your worth isn’t! It can be hard to feel like you belong in academic and professional spaces, no matter your level of accomplishment. Join our panel discussion to hear about their experiences with imposter syndrome and finding their sense of belonging within systems and institutions built to exclude.

2:30 - 3:30 pm PST

3A Preparing for Grad School

Workshop Facilitator:

Monica Cortés Viharo, UW McNair Graduate Student Adviser & Drama PhD Candidate

Session Description:

Procrastination is the mortal enemy of a successful grad school app, so find out early what you can be doing to prepare for not only grad school applications, but to be successful in graduate school once you get there!

3B Application Essay Writing

Presenter:

Dr. Leah Spence, Writing Instructor, UW TRIO Student Support Services

Session Description:

Applying to grad school involves writing–lots of it. Come to this workshop to find out how to write strong essays for applying to grad school. How do you highlight your relevant
strengths and experiences? How do you use your essay to tell a compelling story, and not just provide a longer CV or resume? How do you tailor your essay to match the specific opportunity you’re applying to? Everyone has a story–learn how to tell yours!

3C Student Leadership Panel

Panelists & Moderator:

Najma Abdi, Students of Color for Public Health, UW Mutual Aid; Meron Girma, National Society of Black Healthcare Professionals; Sarah Melissa Ramirez, Baliadores de Bronce; Chardonnay Beaver, Words of Wisdom by Char; Cicero Delfin (Moderator), Assoc. Director of the UW Samuel E. Kelly Ethnic Community Center

Session Description:

Students are often underestimated because of their positionality within power structures, and yet many institutions and norms have fallen or changed in response to student-led activism. Join this panel discussion to hear from undergraduate leaders about their experiences in leadership, advocacy, and marshalling community power, and how that work aligns with their academic interests and purpose.

3:45 - 4:30 pm PST

4A Meditation & Stretching

Workshop Facilitator:

Courtney Saben, Program Manager, UW First Year Programs & Trained Vinyasa & Power Yoga Instructor

Session Description:

Meditation & stretching play an important role in keeping our minds and body healthy! Join us as we encourage movement and flow throughout our bodies and reflect on all that you have learned in today’s symposium! Come win prizes!!

4B Student Games

Game Hosts:

Jimmy Merino-Cruz, Adviser with UW TRIO Student Support Services & Andres Huante, Director of UW College Assistance Migrant Program

Session Description:

Play trivia with your fellow GEG Symposium attendees and get to know each other!

Prizes! Prizes! Prizes!

4C Staff Networking

Program staff – Commiserate and connect with your fellow colleagues!

Day 2 – Friday, April 23, 2021

10 - 11:15 am PST

Day 2 Welcome & Keynote Address

Welcome: Kristian Wiles, Interim Assistant VP of Student Success, University of Washington

Keynote Address: Dr. Tam’ra-Kay Francis, Postdoctoral Fellow, UW Chemistry & Director of Pedagogy and Research on Race, Identity, Social Justice and Meaning (PR2ISM)

Join us on the second day of the GEG Symposium for a brief welcome by Kristian Wiles, Interim Assistant VP of Student Success at the UW. He will be followed by our second keynote speaker, Dr. Tam’ra-Kay Francis, PhD, as she shares with us her experiences advocating for educational access and equity within STEM. See her keynote speaker biography for more information!

11:30 am - 12:30 pm PST

5A The Nature of Research & Failure

Workshop Facilitators:

Dr. Janice DeCosmo, Assoc. Dean of UW Undergraduate Academic Affairs & Assoc. Vice Provost of UW Undergraduate Research & Annabel Cholico, Asst. Director of UW Mary Gates Endowment for Students

Session Description:

This workshop will feature a panel of faculty and student researchers to explore how researchers learn through failure and that whether it is about designing a new experimental method, writing a research proposal, or testing a hypothesis, research doesn’t always go as planned! The phrase “failing forward” which is used in resiliency programs is a great way of thinking about how we make progress in research. Students new to research, however, are still getting used to this idea, and just beginning to be comfortable with how to turn failure into the development of new ideas, approaches, and research questions. Panelists will share how they have learned through failure, and how they found ways to use failure as a way to make progress in research.

5B Mental Health in Graduate School

Workshop Facilitator:

Dr. Andrea Salazar-Nuñez, Education & Training Manager, UW Office of Minority Affairs & Diversity

Session Description:

Mental health is critical, especially when you’re a graduate student. Find out in this workshop how to take care of your mental health during life’s stressful times, both inside and out of academic spaces, so that you can establish a strong work-life balance.

5C Personal Leadership

Workshop Facilitator:

Mellanie Rhae Tanada, Asst. Director of Career Services, UW Evans School of Public Policy

Session Description:

There’s a lot of things to care about and want to change in this world, but sometimes it can be intimidating to lead the charge. Join this workshop to find out the answer to these questions: How can you challenge self-doubt within yourself and find the confidence to pursue or create leadership opportunities as an undergrad and beyond? How can you connect your leadership work and values with your academic, research, or professional interests and goals?

1:15 - 2:15 pm PST

6A Positive Mentoring Relationships

Workshop Facilitators:

Nate Panelo, Asst. Director of the UW Samuel E. Kelly Ethnic Community Center & Tia Pinzón, MESA Director at Everett College

Session Description:

As the saying goes, “It takes a village to raise a child,” and as a student, you want to fill your village up with as many mentors as possible! Learn how you can build positive mentoring relationships with your teachers, your bosses, and really anyone you meet who you think you can learn from. How do you ask someone to be your mentor, what can you expect from a mentor, and what might they expect from you as a mentee? Find out in this workshop!

6B Professionals Panel

Panelists & Moderator:

Brian Lumpkins, Google; Dr. Michelle C. Sabo, UW Medicine; Dr. Sebastian Jose Teran Hidalgo, Vroom; Dr. Patricia Zagallo (Moderator), STEM Instructor, UW TRIO-Student Support Services

Session Description:

Interested in grad school, but no interest in teaching? No problem! Many other careers are available to those with a graduate degree besides being a professor. Learn from our panelists how they apply their education to work outside academia.

6C Building Community as a Means of Resistance

Workshop Facilitator:

Dylan Tran, Senior Director of Education Programs, Peace Community Center

Workshop Description:

When stories of socioeconomic poverty, violence, and abuse are spotlighted, our society often blames individuals for their choices rather than systems that breed these disparate conditions and forced choices. In order to imagine a more just future, we need to reflect on our own stories and understand our respective roles in the ecosystem of social change. We must be radical in our love and care for one another, as well as our work to identify and dismantle systems of oppression. Lilla Watson tells us “If you have come here to help me you are wasting your time, but if you have come because your liberation is bound up with mine, then let us work together.” Join this workshop for a community centered discussion on what freedom
looks like for us, how we get there, and how we bring humanity back to where it has been stolen.

2:30 - 3:30 pm PST

7A CV / Resume Writing

Workshop Facilitator:

CJ Sanchez, Career Coach, UW Career & Internship Center

Session Description:

How do you highlight your relevant strengths and experiences in a resume and/or CV? Come to this writing workshop to find out how to write, structure, and format your resume and/or CV, and get feedback on your resume and/or CV draft.

7B Leadership in Grad School

Workshop Facilitators

Aaron Yared, President of the UW Graduate & Professional Student Senate (GPSS)

Giuliana Conti, Music Education PhD Student & Former GPSS President

Session Description:

How can leadership and advocacy continue into graduate school? Find out in this session how you can extend your activism and how it might look different than leadership you do as an undergrad.

7C Self-Advocacy & Speaking Up for Yourself

Workshop Facilitator:

Andrea Vargas, Program Adviser & Manager, UW Health Informatics & Health Information Management

Session Description:

It can be hard to advocate and speak up for yourself as a student, particularly within situations or spaces where there are power imbalances. Come to this workshop and learn how to do the following: draw attention to your needs with confidence; counter the multitude of social conditioning that might be trying to tell us otherwise; and navigate past complex bureaucracies, procedures, and gatekeepers to get your needs met.

3:45 - 4:30 pm PST

8A Networking: Males of Color in Grad School

Speakers

Dr. Felipe Martinez, Executive Director, CIRCLE; Tory Brundage, PhD Student in Higher Education; Christian K. Love, PhD Candidate in Higher Education; Kendrick O. Wilson, EdD Candidate

8B Networking: Women in STEM

Speakers

Yuliana Flores, UW Human-Centered Design & Engineering PhD Student; Guadalupe Tovar, UW Astronomy & Astrobiology PhD Student

8C Networking: Fireside Chat With STEM Grad Students

Speakers

Dr. Bryan Dosono, Information Science & Technology, Syracuse University; Gabino Abarca, UCLA Public Health PhD Student

8D Networking: Fireside Chat With Social Science Grad Students

Speakers

Mariela Galvan, MEd Student, Seattle University; Daisy Jaime, History PhD Student

Day 3 – Saturday, April 24, 2021

10 - 11:15 am PST

Day 3 Welcome & Keynote Address

Welcome & Keynote Address: Ibette Valle, MS

Join us in closing out the last day of the GEG Symposium with our third and final keynote speaker, Ibette Valle, PhD Student in Social Psychology at the University of California, Santa Cruz. Ibette will be speaking on her work and research to promote educational access and success for low-income, first-generation students of color as well as her experiences within the University of Washington TRIO and CAMP programs and her relationship with our symposium’s namesake, Dr. Gallardo. See her keynote speaker biography for more information!

11:30 - 12:30 pm / 1 - 2 pm / 2:30 - 3:30 pm PST

Day 3 Oral Presentations

Check our Oral Presenter Abstracts & Schedule page for the full breakdown of Oral Presentation Sessions.

3:45 - 4:30 pm PST

Closing Session

Join us as we close out our first Gabriel E. Gallardo Research, Student Leadership & Advocacy Symposium!