Graduate Students Needed for DC Trip

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Graduate Students Needed for DC Trip

Office of Research, Innovation and Impact
January 8, 2020

In April 2020, the University of Arizona will open its new Center for Outreach and Collaboration in Washington, DC. This facility will co-locate our federal relations team, The National Institute for Civil Discourse, subject matter experts from Research, Innovation and Impact, and the new Semester in Washington Presidential Fellowship Program. Additionally, we plan to build out space for alumni, donors, admissions, and outside stakeholder groups to host events throughout the year. This facility will be the University’s front door in Washington and we hope it will let us highlight UA’s treasures, and collaborate with internal and external partners to advance our mission.

As part of the grand opening, RII will be hosting a Corporate Engagement Luncheon on Friday 24 April 2020. We will be inviting senior executives from Fortune 500 companies as well as their Washington teams, and anticipate between 50 and 80 attendees (plus UA staff). We will have a seated lunch at 10-person round tables. For the lunch portion, I would like to have a graduate student lead the discussion at each table on a topic that connects to their own research and to corporate America. Afterwards, those grad students will assemble on stage for a short panel discussion about topics that resonated at their individual tables, and a brief exploration of common themes.

Therefore, well in advance of next April, we need to identify 8 to 10 graduate students (or very mature undergraduates) who can

  • Take two days to travel to Washington DC at RII expense.
  • Demonstrate confidence and competence without appearing arrogant or “ivory tower”
  • Communicate their research focus clearly, without jargon, to non-specialists
  • Lead a 45-minute discussion on how that work impacts corporate America
  • Listen well, and accurately capture what they hear from their table
  • Quickly summarize that discussion on stage to an audience of 100 people
  • Present an example of UA’s intellectual strength, professionalism, and diversity

Note that these students should represent all of campus, not just STEM majors. Although this isn’t a hiring event, we’ll do our best to match industry sectors with the student host of each table. If nothing else, they should leave with some excellent contacts!

I expect to start a “funnel” with 40-50 students in January, then narrow down to a final list based on email responses and personal interviews in February. Please ask students who may be interested to fill in this brief form.

Please feel free to forward this email to anyone you think might have students to recommend.

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