WID Symposium

May 20-21, 2021

The fourth Annual WID Symposium — and second virtual WID Symposium — features collaborative lightning talks and two poster sessions across two days. This event is integral to being a WIDite, so please make your attendance a top priority and encourage your colleagues to do the same.

Virtual Tools – This year’s symposium will use a variety of virtual meeting tools; you may wish to make yourself familiar with these tools ahead of the symposium:

  • Zoom – Plenary sessions and lightning talks will take place within Zoom’s virtual meeting software.
  • Congregate – Break room discussions, the closing activity, and the poster session will take place in Congregate’s online meeting space.
click here for virtual symposium tips
SYMposium Schedule:

WIDites are expected to attend the program in its entirety.

Thursday, May 20
10:00 am CDT Welcome & WID Updates
WID Director Jo Handelsman
Zoom: WID Symposium
10:30 Grand Challenge: Keep the Human Brain Healthy
Professor John Denu, Biomolecular Chemistry
Zoom: WID Symposium
10:45 Collaborative Lightning Talk Session 1
Zoom: WID Symposium

Assistant Professor Karen Schloss & Professor Robert Nowak
What’s this color? Quantifying human judgments of color category membership across color space

Professor Jon Eckhardt & Associate Professor Kevin Ponto
Research Beyond the Lab

Shilu Zhang (Roy Lab) & Stefan Pietrzak (Sridharan Lab)

Professor Jim Luedtke & Assistant Professor Daniel Pimentel-Alarcón
Tackling combinatorially challenging data science problems


11:30 Grand Challenge: Ensure Equity in the Impact of Data Science
Professor Robert Nowak, Electrical and Computer Engineering
Zoom: WID Symposium
11:45 Collaborative Lightning Talk Session 2
Zoom: WID Symposium

Nan Jiang (Yin Lab) & Data Science Hub Facilitator Sarah Stevens
Looking for Molecular Parasites of Coronavirus with Support from the Data Science Hub

Professor Jo Handelsman & Assistant Professor Claudia Solís-Lemus
Bayesian CAR LASSO network model applied to THOR, a model microbial community

Professor Wendy Crone & Professor Lih-Sheng Tom Turng
At the interface of engineered materials and biology

Associate Professor Krishanu Saha & Associate Professor Randolph Ashton

12:15 pm Lunch Break
1:00 Grand Challenge: Mitigate Soil Loss and Climate Change
Professor Michael Ferris, Computer Sciences
Zoom: WID Symposium
1:15 Collaborative Lightning Talk Session 3
Zoom: WID Symposium

Nisha Iyer (Ashton Group) & Junha Shin (Roy Lab)

Professor Stephen Wright & Professor Michael Ferris
Optimization Theory and Practice

Yuyuan Wang (Gong Lab) & Shuiming Qian (Zhong Lab)

Professor Jeff Linderoth & Professor David Baum

1:45 Grand Challenge: Bring Science to People and People to Science
Ginger Ann, Executive Director, Illuminating Discovery Hub
Zoom: WID Symposium
1:55 Day 1 Closing, Preview Poster Sessions
2:00 End of Day 1 Program
Friday, May 21
11:00 am CDT Welcome Back & Grand Challenge Discussion
WID Director Jo Handelsman
Zoom: WID Symposium
11:30 Poster Session 1: WID Overview
This session features overviews of WID’s research groups. These overviews are created with a general, non-scientist audience in mind in order to facilitate understanding, invite conversation, and spark connections among WIDites and the broader community.
Congregate: WID Overview Poster Session
See all posters
12:30 pm Poster Session 2: Research Posters
This session features traditional research posters from all areas of WID. The presentations may range from general and very accessible to domain-specific and technical, but presenters are encouraged to consider a broader audience and invite non-traditional collaborations and partnerships.
Congregate: WID Research Poster Session
See all posters
1:30 End of Event