WE16: Opportunities for Involvement!

We are only TWO months (plus a few days) away from the WE16 national conference in Philadelphia, PA! Participating in a conference session is a great way to justify attending the conference and network with fellow SWE grads. Here are TWO ways to become involved in WE16 as a grad student! These opportunities include:

  1. Rapid Fire sessions – call for applications
  2. GradSWE member survey/option to participate in a panel at the GradSWE Meet & Greet

Rapid Fire Sessions: Year after year, Rapid Fire presentation prove to be a very beneficial way for SWE grads to practice presenting their research in front of their peers and a panel of judges. The call for applications is officially open and due on Monday, September 26th at 11:59 pm EST. Please fill out the application here. Master’s and PhD students are highly encouraged to apply.

GradSWE Member Survey: Does your university have a GradSWE committee? If so, we would love to have your input! Each GradSWE committee arranges their funding and committee structures in a slightly different way. We are planning to devote time to discussing this at WE16. Ultimately, these efforts will create a reference of “best practices” as GradSWE committees become more prevalent across the country. We greatly appreciate your input! Please fill our the survey here.

For questions about either of these opportunities, Please email Rachel at grad-programs-coordinator@swe.org with any questions.


Region F Call for Speakers

Hello All,

The Region F conference is right around the corner and the graduate group is in desperate need of speakers. There are several sessions geared towards graduate students including a rapid-fire presentation and a panel on mentor relationships in graduate school. These are great opportunities to get involved the regional conference and build your network. Additionally, many colleges will offer financial assistance to speakers at conferences. If you are interested in learning more about these presentation opportunities, visit https://regionf.wordpress.com/2015/12/06/region-f-conference-rapid-fire-technical-talk/  contact Genevieve Kane at genevieve.kane24@gmail.com

Enjoy Regional Conferences everyone!

Rapid Fire Submission Deadline Extended!

The Rapid Fire submission deadline has been extended until Wednesday, September 30 @ 11:59 PM CST! If you wanted to submit an abstract but didn’t have the time to write one in the past few weeks, no problem! You still have a few more days! Click here for a link to the original blog posting containing the application link.

Don’t think your research fits into the NAE Grand Challenges? Don’t have enough research background or data to reach the 500 max word limit? No worries, submit your abstract anyway! All abstracts are welcome!

There are two Graduate Rapid Fire Sessions: Rapid Fire Session I on Friday, October 23rd, and Rapid Fire Session II on Saturday, October 24th. Both are from 10:00 AM – 11:15 AM.

Please email all questions to Rachel Unruh, Graduate Programming Coordinator – Elect (grad-programs-coordinator-elect@swe.org).

Happy writing!

WE15 Rapid Fire Sessions – Call for Applications!

Applications have opened for the WE15 Rapid Fire Sessions in Nashville, TN! Rapid Fire allows SWE members to present their research to a panel of judges and audience of peers from a wide array of STEM disciplines. Emphasizing concision and clarity, these sessions contain a series of five-minute presentations followed by a brief Q&A session for each presenter. Presenters are given feedback immediately following the session.

This is a great way to receive feedback on your presenting skills. The audience is smaller, and presentation times are shorter than for traditional conference platform presentations. Rapid Fire also serves as a great way to justify your attendance at WE15 to your advisor and others!

In addition to presenting your own research in an efficient and concise manner, we ask that you consider how your research fits into the world in a broader sense, specifically in the context of the fourteen NAE Grand Challenges for Engineering (http://www.engineeringchallenges.org/cms/challenges.aspx).  With technological advances becoming more frequent and humanity becoming more interconnected than ever before, it is imperative that we reflect on how our technological discoveries affect humanity at large, not only in our own local daily environments. Toward this aim, the NAE has identified the below grand challenges facing engineers of the 21st century:

  1. Make Solar Energy Economical
  2. Provide Energy from Fusion
  3. Develop Carbon Sequestration Methods
  4. Manage the Nitrogen Cycle
  5. Provide Access to Clean Water
  6. Restore and Improve Urban Infrastructure
  7. Advance Health Informatics
  8. Engineer Better Medicines
  9. Reverse-Engineer the Brain
  10. Prevent Nuclear Terror
  11. Secure Cyberspace
  12. Enhance Virtual Reality
  13. Advance Personalized Learning
  14. Engineer the Tools of Scientific Discovery

We invite you to reflect on how these challenges fit into your own research and write your abstract in this context. If you are interested in participating in a Rapid Fire Session, please fill out the application here. The application will be closed at 11:59 PM EST on Monday, September 21. Applicants will be notified of their status by Monday, September 28, 2015. All graduate students are STRONGLY encouraged to apply!

For questions about the application, please email:

Richelle Thomas, Graduate Programming Coordinator (grad-programs-coordinator@swe.org)

Rachel Unruh, Graduate Programming Coordinator – Elect (grad-programs-coordinator-elect@swe.org)

Final Reminder: WE14 Rapid Fire Submissions Due Today!

Today is the final chance to submit an abstract to the WE14 Rapid Fire Sessions. 

Don’t miss this opportunity to present your research and gain great feedback on your presentation. This is a unique experience that is often not available at technical conferences.

Click Here to submit an abstract.

We are also looking for Rapid Fire judges at the conference. If interested, please email Elly Sinkala at esinkala@gmail.com.



3rd Annual Rapid Fire Sessions at WE14 LA!

Rapid Fire sessions are back again! The sessions will be held at the WE14 conference in Los Angeles, CA (October 23-25). Participating in the Rapid Fires is a great way to showcase your research to a diverse audience while honing your communication skills. The sessions consist of five minute presentations by graduate students with a focus on the National Academy of Engineering’s Grand Challenges for Engineering.


Read on for more info!

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Ways to get Involved in SWE as a Graduate Student

Congratulations to all the Spring 2013 Graduates!  As graduation marks a new chapter in many lives (motivating current grad students that it is possible to someday graduate), now seems to be a great time to have you think about what you want to include in your next chapter.  SWE has many activites to increase your leadership skills, develop your network in meaningful way, and to support other women in engineering.  There are many ways you can get more involved in SWE both as a graduate student and as recent graduate below I have listed a few ways to get more involved than just a general member.

There are several options currently recruiting and available for graduate students and recently graduated MS & PhDs to get more involved. There are varying levels of commitment and different ways to be involved.  I encourage you to connect into SWE.

Short Commitment Options:

  • Rapid Fire Research Presenter at WE13 more information is available in the Rapid Fire Callout Post. Abstracts DUE June 15, 2013.
  • Volunteer to judge the Freshman Scholarship Applications.  More information about how to volunteer to judgeThe judging is May 30 – June19, 2013. 
  • WE13 or WE14 Session Panelist – Need Graduate Student Panelist for “Graduate Student Involvement in SWE Sections” also can volunteer to be a panel session moderator if interested please contact Marcella Vaicik, Graduate Programming Coordinator WE13 at Marcella.Vaicik@swe.org.
  • Join the Graduate Student Community on Facebook by clicking here. Graduate students are welcome and encouraged to share opportunities for jobs, fellowships, and other items of interest to the Grad Student Community on Facebook.  We look forward to creating additional project leadership roles from within the Grad Student Community in the upcoming SWE fiscal year.  Those will be announced via the SWE Grad blog depending on project needs. 

Annual Commitment Options:

  • Join a Society Committee.  This is a great way to learn more about the inner workings of SWE.  Committees are also a wonderful way to meet and interact with other professional members and make an impact on SWE. Click here to learn more about the different Society level committees.Graduate SWE members have served on several different committees for example Collegiate Leadership Coach/Coaching Committee, Program Development Grants Committee, Women in Academia Committee, Collegiate Leadership Forum please read through the committee descriptions and sign up to be a committee member. To apply click here to be on a specific Society Level Committee, applications are DUE MAY 30, 2013:
  • WE14 Session Leader (can be session leader even if not able to attend conference) if interested contact Elly Sinkala at grad-programs-coordinator@swe.org. These roles start immediately after WE13 watch the SWE grad blog in October for the callout for these roles.
  • Take on a leadership role at your local collegiate section as Graduate Student Activities Liason contact your local section leadership to volunteer for this position.

 2 Year Commitment Options:

  • Society Level Graduate Programming Coordinator, successful applicants usually have served as session leaders at past WE conferences.  This role is a 2 year commitment with the first year serving as the Graduate Programming Coordinator Elect.  Applications will be available after WE13 watch the SWE grad blog this fall for this position.
  • Society Level Graduate Member Coordinator, successful applicants usually have held leadership roles in their local collegiate section, involvement in the Graduate Student Community as well as society level roles on committees.  This role is a 2 year commitment with the first year serving as the Graduate Member Coordinator Elect. Applications are available in early April with all society level leadership positions callout. 

Marcella Vaicik