The 2017 Graduate Research Showcase is a daylong opportunity for College of Engineering graduate students to gain valuable professional development experience, network with industry partners, present research, and learn about the research of others. 

Graduate Research Showcase
Friday, February 17, 2017
CH2M HILL Alumni Center
7:00 a.m. - 4:00 p.m.

Poster presentation information


7:00 a.m.   -   Check-in opens
7:30 a.m.   -   Continental breakfast
8:30 a.m.   -   Professional development workshop session 1 - choose one from below
10:00 a.m. -   Morning break
10:30 a.m. -   Professional development workshop session 2 - choose one from below
12:00 p.m. -   Box lunch
1:00 p.m.   -   Poster presentations
All day      -   Exhibitor Showcase


There is limited seating for workshops, and registration is on a first-come, first-serve basis. To ensure a spot, please register soon. 

Carl GuessThree Secrets to Effectively Pitching Your Research Project
with Carl Guess, Elevator Speech

We love speakers who get to the point, tell stories, and dump the jargon. Unfortunately, too many researchers do exactly the opposite when pitching projects to senior faculty. Why should you care? If people don't understand what you're trying to say, they'll stop listening. And that great idea? It's not going anywhere.

This workshop will cover the skills you need to be remembered when pitching, including three secrets to help make you crisp, clear, and memorable, long after you've stopped speaking.

Carl Guess has worked for more than two decades as a communications consultant. He puts a premium on helping people find just the right words. Why? Because audiences love presenters who get to the point and don't waste their time. Carl has coached CEOs, investment fund managers, doctors, lawyers, engineers, and even marine architects. He works with companies that sell everything from software to ski boots -- as well as those that fund startups, treat patients, and manage billions in retirement funds. Yet no matter the industry, his approach is always the same: help people find what really needs to be said and to say only that. Carl holds a Bachelor's Degree in English and a Minor in Computer Science from Lewis & Clark Collge -- and a Master of Science Degree from the School of Journalism at Columbia University.

Katherine KorneiCommunicating Science: Writing for Public Audiences
with Dr. Katherine Kornei, Oregon Museum of Science and Industry

In this 1.5-hour workshop, you will learn how science writers distill complex research results into clear, concise text. You will practice writing brief articles about your own research and receive tips for tailoring your writing for various audiences. Please bring a laptop with a text editing program. 

Katherine Kornei is a freelance science writer and educator living in Portland. Her writing has appeared in Wired, Popular Science, Discover, and Astronomy magazines, among others. Dr. Kornei holds a B.S. in astrophysics from Yale University and M.S. and Ph.D. degrees in astronomy from the University of California, Los Angeles. When Dr. Kornei is not writing, she works as a Program and Exhibit Developer at the Oregon Museum of Science and Industry.

Careers in engineering panel
with Jennifer Davidson, Kent Welter, Kathryn Higley, Josh Gray, Melissa Santala, and Jason Magalen; facilitated by Scott Paja

This panel discussion includes graduates who have taken their degrees in various directions, whether it be academia, government, private industry, or a national lab. Facilitated by Scott Paja, Director of Leadership & Professional Development, the panel will answer your questions about career possibilities. You will also have an opportunity to network with the panelists in small groups.

Jennifer Davidson (Ph.D. 2014, computer science) specialized in human computer interaction and is currently a senior user experience researcher for Mozilla. Her passion is for designing and running research studies so that everyone has a say in shaping technology. Throughout her student career, she had internships at Pacific Northwest National Laboratory, Hewlett-Packard, and Intel Corporation. After graduation she worked at Intel before moving to Mozilla. She also teaches at the University of Washington and Bellevue College.

Kent Welter (Ph.D. 2003, nuclear engineering) currently leads the safety engineering group at NuScale Power—a small-modular nuclear reactor startup based in Oregon. He is also chairman of the board of directors for the Willamette Innovators Network. His past work experience includes reactor systems engineering and project management for the U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission and a research stint at Argonne National Laboratory.

Kathryn Higley holds a Ph.D. in radiological health sciences and is head of the Oregon State School of Nuclear Science and Engineering. She has been a College of Engineering faculty member since 1994. In conjunction with her academic career she is chair of the International Commission on Radiological Protection’s Committee 5 (protection of the environment) and  a member of the National Council on Radiation Protection and Measurement (NCRP). Prior to academia she worked at Pacific Northwest National Laboratory and was a radioecologist for the Trojan Nuclear Power Plant. She consults on radiological issues worldwide.  

Josh Gray (B.S. 1995, computer engineering) has spent his career helping turn innovative ideas into valuable products. He is a multi-time founder, and currently advises and invests in early stage companies while also serving as chief architect at Portland-area software company Cedexis. As an entrepreneur, he has taken ideas from concept through company and team to million dollar revenue streams multiple times. He has raised over $50 million in venture financing over the years--including $10+ million each from angel groups, institutional investment and name-brand venture capital firms. Rounding out his experience he's also spent a few years between startups at companies like Microsoft and Mentor Graphics.

Melissa Santala (Ph.D. 2009, materials science & engineering) has been an assistant professor at Oregon State since 2015. Before coming to OSU she spent six years doing research at Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory, first as a post-doctoral researcher and then as a staff scientist. While passionate about her current work in material science, Dr. Santala comes to this field as a second career, having spent six years as a painting conservator (M.A., art conservation, 1996).

Jason Magalen (M.Oc.E 2006, ocean engineering) is a coastal and ocean engineer with HDR, Inc. in Portland, Oregon. He has over 10 years’ experience in coastal, dredge, marine, and environmental engineering; and hydrographic and marine geophysical surveying. The majority of his career has focused on hydrodynamic, sediment and water quality data collection, analysis and numerical modeling; hydrographic/geophysical and topographic surveying; and evaluation and design of coastal structures. He has worked for both the private engineering and consulting sector as well as the public (with the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers in Portland). 


To attend the Research Showcase and/or present your research project, register here. Registration closes January 20. There are 300 poster presentation spots available, and a limited number of workshop seats available. Entry to both will be on a first-come, first-serve basis. 

Poster presentation information

One student presenter per project may register to present. Please obtain your advisor's approval prior to registering. Your advisor will be contacted upon receipt of your registration to verify approval. You will be emailed approximately one week after you register with your registration approval or denial.

Poster template downloads 

Please download and use the applicable poster template based on your school from My CoE under "Graduate Research Showcase Poster Templates - Feb. 17, 2017" which can be found under "Tools." Posters created without using the template will not be accepted.

Poster guidelines

Poster templates are part of the College of Engineering's branded suite of marketing materials. This collection of integrated tools helps communicate a consistent and professional message and visual signature to our stakeholders about the college and its impact.

The poster templates are designed to give students a consistently formatted starting point for their posters to streamline the design process. Students can adjust the layout of the text and images to fit their needs. The two columns in the middle panel may be merged. To ensure an integrated visual identity at this public event, compliance with the required elements of the poster templates is expected. The following criteria for the poster templates must be met:

  • The top header, including the names of the college and school, and the orange Oregon State University tag on the bottom right are to be left intact and unobstructed (no stretching, compression, displacement, altering in any way).
  • The font, font size, and font color can not be changed.
    • Title: Trebuchet MS (Headings), 80 bold
    • First-level subhead: Trebuchet MS (Body), 54 regular
    • Second-level subhead (if needed): Trebuchet MS (Body), 36 bold, all caps
    • Body text: Trebuchet (Body), 30 regular

Poster submission guidelines

All conference posters must be submitted to Student Multimedia Services (SMS) located in the Valley Library. Submit posters online by February 7, 2017. You will not be charged for the printing of this poster. The College of Engineering will pick up the posters from SMS and will have it on display when you arrive at the Research Showcase. If you need to print additional copies for other uses, you must submit, pay for (as applicable), and pick up separately. 

Common questions when submitting posters to SMS

  • Do I list a course number? Use the conference title: Engineering Research Showcase 2017
  • What are the finished poster dimensions? 46" x 35.5" 
  • What are the file dimensions? My file's dimensions exactly match the final printed size
  • Will the poster be laminated? No, it will not be laminated
  • What is the ink type? Standard
  • What is the paper type? Standard
  • How will the poster be mounted? No mounting is required. The poster will be tacked to a bulletin board.


Awards will be granted to the top research projects in each school. Awards will be determined by a judging committee made up of faculty members. The award categories and criteria will be forthcoming. The award-winning presentations will be invited to attend and present at the 2017 Oregon Stater Awards reception in Portland on Feburary 23, 2017. 


As the Graduate Research Showcase sponsor, ESCO will be tabling throughout the day for you to network with.