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Inaugural GradSLAM! Event Set to Kick Off

February 5, 2015
The UC Merced Graduate Division will soon launch GradSLAM!, in which Ph.D. students will hone their public speaking skills before competing against their peers on campus in a research presentation competition. The winner will compete in the first-ever UC systemwide GradSLAM! competition.
GradSLAM! is designed to improve students’ abilities to explain their research or creative work to a general audience with poise and confidence. In the competition, students will have three minutes to present their work in front of non-specialist judges.
The winner of the UC Merced competition will receive $2,000 and the opportunity to compete at the UC systemwide GradSLAM! competition May 4 in Oakland. Two runners-up will receive $1,000 each. All participants will receive a gift from the Graduate Division, and the top 10 qualifiers will receive a $25 gift certificate to the Campus Store and an invitation to a luncheon with Graduate Dean Marjorie Zatz.
The competition is open to all current Ph.D. students in good academic standing. Qualifying rounds will be held at 4:30 p.m. March 3 in SSB 130. Finals will be held from 2 to 4 p.m. April 7 in the California Room.
Those who want to get a jump on the competition are invited to attend a public speaking workshop presented by Playhouse Merced. The workshop, designed to help students understand the dynamics of being an effective presenter, will be offered twice — from 4 to 6 p.m. Feb. 10 in the California Room and from 4 to 6 p.m. Feb. 11 in the Bobcat Lair (RSVP required). 
Each workshop will be followed by a wine and cheese social hour with the Playhouse Merced instructors, and the top 10 qualifiers will also receive personalized training from Playhouse Merced in preparation for the final competition. 
Visit the GradSLAM! website for more information, or click here to register.