"T Cell Movement/Traffic"
Each year, the MD Anderson Summer Experience concludes with a final event featuring more than 250 high school, undergraduate, graduate, and doctoral interns. Students will hone their science communication skills by presenting their research in the form of a scientific poster and competing in an Elevator Speech competition.
Two events will take place during week 10 of the 2023 summer program:
1) The Elevator Speech competition on Wednesday, August 9, 2023, at 11 a.m. on Zoom. Selected finalists will compete for a cash prize in the categories of Best Speech and People's Choice.
2) Poster Exhibition (two sessions for in-person summer interns only) on Thursday, August 10, 2023, at 9 a.m. - 2 p.m. in CPB 8, Rooms 1-8.
Poster & Elevator Speech (ES) Resources
Elevator Speech Competition
- Date: Wednesday, August 9, 2023
- Location: Zoom (link shared to all SE students)
- 11-11:30 a.m.: Elevator speech competition
- 11:30 - 11:45 a.m.: Intermission: Elevator speech judging (Best Speech Award) and Audience voting (People's Choice Award)
- 11:45 a.m. - Noon: Announcement of elevator speech winners & closing remarks
- 11-11:30 a.m.: Elevator speech competition
Summer Experience Poster Exhibition
- Date: Thursday, August 10, 2023
- Location: MD Anderson, Dan L. Duncan Building (Cancer Prevention Building-CPB), 1155 Pressler St., Houston, TX 77030, CPB 8th Floor, Rooms 1-8
- Participating programs (two sessions):
- Session 1: 9:00 a.m. – 11:00 a.m.
- 1ST Year Medical Students
- Driving Innovation in Science through Opportunities for Veterinary Engagement in Research (DISCOVER)
- Diagnostic Imaging - Summer Training and Experiences Partnership (DI-STEP)
- ITERT Undergraduate Summer Research Training Program
- Summer Undergraduate Research Program (SURP)
- University Outreach Summer Program
- University Outreach – High School Program
- Unaffiliated Summer Students
- Session 2: 12:00 p.m. - 2:00 p.m.
- CPRTP Summer Research Experience
- King Foundation
- Partnership for Careers in Cancer Science and Medicine (PCCSM)
- Summer Imaging Research Program (SIRP)
- Summer Program in Cancer Research (SPCR)
|Mon., June 26||8 a.m. CDT||ES Competition Registration Opens||bit.ly/ESCompetitionRegistration|
|Weds., July 12||2-3:30 p.m. CDT||ES Workshop Part A: Basics & Structure with Dr. Brittany Parker Kerrigan||A Zoom calendar invitation will be emailed to all SE students.|
|Wed., July 19||2-3:30 p.m. CDT||ES Workshop Part B: Styling & Presentation with Dr. Brittany Parker Kerrigan||A Zoom calendar invitation will be emailed to all SE students.|
|Wed., July 26||11:59 p.m. CDT||ES Competition Registration Closes||bit.ly/ESCompetitionRegistration|
|Sun., July 30||11:59 p.m. CDT||ES Audition Video Deadline||All ES competition registrants will receive a link to upload the audition video.|
|Thurs., Aug. 3||5 p.m. CDT||Abstract submission deadline (for publication in OpenWorks)||https://mdanderson.libwizard.com/f/summerexperienceabstracts_2023|
|Mon., Aug 7||5 p.m. CDT||Poster submission deadline (for publication in OpenWorks)||https://openworks.mdanderson.org/cgi/ir_submit.cgi?context=sumexp23
|Mon., Aug. 7||5 p.m. CDT||Selected ES Competition Finalists Notified||All ES finalists will be invited to a private Zoom rehearsal.|
|Tues., Aug. 8||3-4 p.m. CDT||ES Finalist Rehearsal||Zoom. Calendar invitation sent via email|
|Wed., Aug. 9||11 a.m. - Noon CDT||Summer Experience Elevator Speech Competition & Awards||Zoom. Calendar invitation sent via email to all SE students and programs.|
|Thurs., Aug. 10||9 a.m. - 2 p.m. CDT||Summer Experience Poster Session (for students appointed as in-person/on-campus only). The recording of the Elevator Speech competition will be broadcasted.||CPB 8 Rooms 1-8|
Publishing in OpenWorks
The following abstract and poster submission instructions are only for digital publishing, not the poster session or any contest.
- The abstracts and posters for all MD Anderson Summer Experience interns, regardless of appointment location, will be published in MD Anderson OpenWorks https://openworks.mdanderson.org/summerexperience/, an online repository for scholarship, including posters and abstracts.
- Open Works publishing assigns each abstract and poster a unique url DOI (Data Object Identifier) that can be used on CVs, Resumes, professional websites (e.g., LinkedIn), and other digital media platforms, making it easy to share your summer work with others.
- Deadline: Enter abstract details in the electronic form at https://mdanderson.libwizard.com/f/summerexperienceabstracts_2023 by Wednesday, August 9, 2023, 5 p.m. CDT. No file upload required.
- Abstracts for MD Anderson Summer Experience students are featured in the OpenWorks digital collection. This online 'book of abstracts' is a way to showcase the amazing cancer research conducted by SE interns and can be cited indefinitely and include a link to the abstract on their CV/Resume, social media, or other digital spaces.
- All authors must be listed. Each author must include institution affiliation.
- Word limit: 400 words or less
- Keyword limit: Less than 5
- Required sub-headings:
- Deadline: Upload the poster to https://openworks.mdanderson.org/cgi/ir_submit.cgi?context=sumexp23 by Wednesday, August 9, 2023, 5 p.m. CDT.
- To create your poster:
- Must be saved and uploaded as an Adobe .pdf file.
- Must be 36 inches x 36 inches. Use this template. Please do not use a poster template provided by your department, mentor or elsewhere.
- Must include MD Anderson logo (see title banner in #1 above).
- Poster font must be Arial or Times New Roman.
- Must be uploaded as an Adobe .pdf file.
- Background color must be white.
- There are no other requirements for the body of the poster.
- See Poster and Elevator Speech resources at the top of this web page for a link to previously published Summer Experience posters.
- Any summer student appointed to one of the MD Anderson Summer Experience participating programs is eligible to register and audition for the Elevator Speech (ES) competition.
- Previous winners are ineligible to compete.
- We regret summer interns not in participating MD Anderson Summer Experience programs are ineligible to compete.
Elevator Speech competition:
- Selected finalists will compete live at 11 a.m. CDT on Wednesday, August 9, 2023 on Zoom.
- The focus of the elevator speech is on communicating the significance of your work, rather than on reporting specific conclusive results.
- Instructional workshops for creating elevator speeches will be offered (see Schedule: Timeline & Order of Events).
- Cash prizes will be awarded for Best Speech and People's Choice.
- Commit to compete. Register between 8 a.m. CDT, Mon., June 26 and 11:59 p.m. CDT, Weds., July 26. All registrants will receive an invitation to upload their 90-second audition video to a Google drive folder.
- Attend the free optional workshops. Learn to create effective elevator speeches. Prepare questions in advance after reading workshop materials from our Google Drive folder. Workshop attendance is optional and not required to enter the competition. See Deadlines and Order of Events.
- Create your 90-second audition video using your tablet, laptop, camcorder, computer or smartphone. This is only a preliminary Elevator Speech. Acceptable video file formats are: 3g2, 3gp, avi, m2v, m4v, mov, mp4, mpeg, mpg and wmv. In this video, tell us about yourself and your summer research project. Be as creative and innovative as you wish. Video filename format: LastName,FirstName_ES.xxx. Example: Doe,Jane_ES.mp4
- Upload your audition video to our Google Drive folder by 11:59 p.m. CDT, Sun., July 30.
- Find out if you're a finalist. Finalists will be notified via email by 5 p.m. CDT, Mon., Aug. 7.
- Rehearse your speech, 3-4 p.m. CDT, Tues., Aug. 8 with other finalists. Be prepared to give and receive constructive feedback.
- Speak to compete live on Zoom at 11 a.m. CDT on Wed., Aug. 9 for cash prizes: Best Speech and People's Choice.
For the competition, two (2) sets of unique judge panels: Preliminary Judges (of audition videos) and Competition Judges (of selected finalists during the live event), will evaluate speeches in the areas of content, delivery, and overall impact and appeal.
- Contains brief introduction and context, research question, purpose, methods and results, significance, possible next steps.
- Avoids excessive jargon and technical detail; focuses on value and significance of work
- Content is explained well enough that any educated lay person could get the gist of it.
- Expresses enthusiasm
- Uses appropriate gestures, props, etc.
- Speaks loudly and clearly
- Well-polished but not mechanical; does not read (occasional glance at notes is okay)
- Does not exceed time limit (90 seconds)
3. Overall Impact and Appeal
- Human appeal
Elevator Speech Questions
What’s an Elevator Speech?
It’s a 90-second talk about what you do, why you do it, and why it’s important.
Why does anyone need an Elevator Speech?
Everyone needs an Elevator Speech! It is the most important communication tool you have for making a strong impression on leaders in your institution, on other scientists, people who might hire you, people who might fund your work, people who might publish your work, people you meet at conferences, your parents’ friends, your parents…
I don’t have any results to present yet, so I can’t do an Elevator Speech, right?
Wrong! An Elevator Speech isn’t a formal presentation of research findings. It’s a tool that you can use any time that tells others what your work is about. There are simple techniques for tailoring your speech to describe different stages of your research.
English isn’t my first language, so I don’t think I can compete…
Wrong! Everyone is on an equal footing in learning this type of communication. And it’s not your language that counts, it’s your enthusiasm and how you describe your ideas that count.
How can I possibly explain to a non-specialist my complex research? No one outside my field can really get what I do.
That’s exactly the point of having a good Elevator Speech. Done properly, you can get your ideas and your project across to just about anyone in 90 seconds.
What is the difference between an Elevator Speech and Elevator Pitch?
These terms are synonymous and use interchangeably. An elevator pitch, elevator speech, lift speech or elevator statement is a short description of an idea, product, job, research, company, or other item that explains the concept in a way such that any listener can understand it in a short period of time.
What should be the topic of my Elevator Speech?
Your summer cancer research project. Please discuss presentation topics with your mentor.
I am unable to attend the ES workshops, will the workshops be recorded?
Yes. Videos from previous workshops are saved in our google drive folder.
I am unable to attend both ES workshops. Will someone send me workshop materials?
No. It is the student's responsibility to visit our Google drive folder at https://bit.ly/ElevatorSpeechMaterials to download handouts, presentation slides, and view recorded videos.
My SE program is having a final oral presentation event for our division. I was told that we will have to give an Elevator Speech for this event. Do I need to attend the ES workshop (I don't plan to enter the ES competition)?
The ES workshops are open to all (e.g., faculty, staff, interns, volunteers). Some participating Summer Experience programs may host oral presentation events for their students. Your program will determine the final presentation training and requirements. Consult your program manager for more information regarding your required final presentations.
Elevator Speech Competition Questions
Can I register for the competition if I don't attend a workshop?
Yes. Workshop attendance is optional, but recommended. Please view the recorded workshops in our google drive folder.
My program is not participating in the Summer Experience program listed on the website at www.MDAnderson.org/Summer. Can I register to enter the competition?
Only MD Anderson Summer Experience students are eligible to register and compete. Your summer program must be listed on this web page to be eligible to participate, this includes all undergraduate, graduate, first year medical, middle school, and high school programs (e.g., Kingwood, University Outreach) listed on the web page. If your program is not listed and you would like your program to be included in the MD Anderson Summer Experience, please have your Program Director contact SummerExperience@mdanderson.org.
What if my summer cancer research project is not finished?
Final results are not necessary. Report only your findings.
Can my parents attend the virtual ES competition?
Yes. Forward the Zoom link to all interested parties.
I registered for the ES competition, but I no longer wish to compete. What should I do?
Students who register for the competition are not obligated to upload an audition video. Registration signals our office that you are interested. If you decide not to enter the competition, do not upload an audition video. Notification is not necessary.
Should I let my mentor know I am entering the competition?
Yes. Communicate with your program, mentor, supervisor, and research team and keep them informed about your progress and whether you are selected as a finalists. Forward the calendar invitaiton to your department.
What attire is required for the ES competition?
Please dress professionally (as if you were going on a job interview). Some options are suit jackets, ties, blouses, button-up shirts, and dresses.
May I invite my family and friends to attend?
Yes. All SE students will receive an Outlook calendar invitation to the ES competition and may share the link with family and friends.
Why do I need to change the filename for my Elevator Speech audition video?
We need to know who the video belongs to. Simply rename the video filename using the format: LastName,FirstName_ES.xxx . Example: Doe,Jane_ES.mp4. Files without the appropriate file name format will be disqualified.
May I use props in the Elevator Speech audition video or during the live competition, if I am a finalist?
What are the prize amounts for the Elevator Speech competition?
The prize amounts are $400 for People's Choice and $600 for Best Speech. Cash awards will be sent via a payment request in the MD Anderson PeopleSoft system. Depending on the student's account, the payment may be sent via U.S. mail or direct deposit within 21 calendar days of the event or the next available Accounting pay cycle.
Who reviews and scores the audition videos?
Audition videos are reviewed and scored by a preliminary committee of Summer Experience alumni, MD Anderson postdoctoral fellows, GSBS (MD Anderson graduate school of biomedical sciences) fellows, and other staff members. The audition video judges differ from the competition judges.
Who determines the ES winners?
A panel of judges will select the 'Best Speech Award' and the audience will participate in an electronic poll to select the 'People's Choice Award'.
How should I practice my ES?
Record yourself; practice with family and friends. Ideally, your speech should be understood by anyone, regardless of education or research background.
Will I receive feedback on my ES audition video?
Who will be invited to the Elevator Speech Competition?
All SE programs are invited to the ES competition. Individual programs should forward the announcement/invitation to the mentors and support staff of their students. If you plan to enter the competition, it is your responsibility to inform your program, department, mentor, and colleagues. You may also forward the Zoom link/calendar invitation to your family or friends. Please do not post MDA Zoom links on social media or any websites.
Can a student win both Best Speech & People's Choice awards?
Will I receive an email if I am not selected as a finalist?
Yes. A status email will be sent by 5 p.m. CDT, Monday, August 7, 2023 to all students who submitted an audition video by
I am an ES finalist, may I submit a recorded video for the live competition?
No. ES finalists will compete live on Zoom.
Abstract and Poster Questions
I'm confused. Why do I have to upload an abstract and poster? Is there a abstract and poster contest?
No. Uploading the abstract and posters will allow your work to be seen by all MD Anderson trainees, faculty, and staff. Once uploaded to OpenWorks, the abstract and poster will have a unique url that the intern can include on their resume, social media page, or other digital platforms.
Who organizes the OpenWorks website, publications, and the links?
The MD Anderson Research Medical Library.
I need more time to work on my abstract and poster, can the deadline be extended?
No. Please plan accordingly and submit the abstract and poster by the deadline listed on this web page.
My summer project is not complete. What should I do?
No products resulting from this MD Anderson Summer Experience (e.g., abstract, poster or Elevator Speech) requires conclusive or complete results. Report your findings and future research objectives.
|Year||Status||Name||Mentor||Department||College or University||Classification||Speech Title|
|2015||Best Speech Winner||LaNisha Patterson-Ward||Joya Chandra||Pediatrics||Texas Southern University||Graduate Student||Acute Myeloid Leukemia|
|2016||Best Speech Winner||Sarah Syed||Scott Evans||Pulmonary Medicine||The University of Texas at Austin||Undergraduate Junior||Dodging Infection: DUOX Enzymes in Inducible Epithelial Resistance|
|2016||People's Choice Winner||Klaramari 'Klara' Gellci||Nick Whiting||Cancer Systems Imaging||Wayne State University||Undergraduate Junior||Non-Invasive Colon Screening using Hyperpolarized Silicon Nanoparticles|
|2017||Best Speech Winner||Callie Simon||Mary Tripp||Behavioral Science||Auburn University||Undergraduate Junior||Skin Cancer Attitudes and Risk-Reduction Behaviors in Chronic Lymphocytic Leukemia Patients|
|People's Choice Winner||Keerthi Thallapureddy||Gabriel Sawakuchi||Radiation Physics||Nova Southeastern University||Undergraduate Senior||Targeting Cancer Cell DNA Repair with Proton Therapy
|2018||Best Speech Winner||Lauren Bagneris||Samuel Mok||Gynecologic Oncology||Louisiana State University||Undergraduate Junior||Detection is Protection: Ovarian Cancer|
|People's Choice Winner||Mara Nisnisan||Qian Lu||Health Disparities Research||University of Houston- Downtown||Post Bacc||Lack of HPV Vaccine Uptake in College Students|
|2019||(Double Winner) - Best Speech, People's Choice||Devin Brown||Pratip Bhattacharya||Cancer Systems Imaging||University of Houston||Undergraduate Junior||Silicon Making History|
|2021||People's Choice Winner||Navya Murugesan||Kunal Rai||Genomic Medicine||Tulane University||Undergraduate Sophomore||Say No to Mela'NO'ma|
|Best Speech Winner||Trinity Brigham||Pratip Bhattacharya||Cancer Systems Imaging||Prairie View A&M University||Undergraduate Junior||The Anatomy of A Cancer Cell|
|2022||People's Choice Winner||Abdulkader Almosa||Kelly Hunt||Breast Surgical Oncology||Texas Tech University||Undergraduate Freshman||Primary Breast Sarcoma: A Retrospective Single Institution Study of Clinicopathologic Features, Treatment and Prognosis|
|Best Speech Winner||Ella Aldridge||Katherine Hutcheson||Head and Neck Surgery||Augustana College||Undergraduate Senior||Feasibility of DIGEST in the Clinical Setting|
Nancy Strange (poster session and OpenWorks publishing questions)
Education and Training
Marites P. Melancon, Ph.D. (content questions)
Program Director, Summer Experience Program
Associate Professor, Interventional Radiology
Chandra Bartholomeusz, Ph.D. (content questions)
Associate Director, Summer Experience Program
Associate Professor, Breast Medical Oncology
Elevator Speech Competition
Kava L. Lewis, M.A. (ES competition questions)
Cancer Prevention Research Training Program