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Cornell University


Monday, December 07 - Tuesday, December 08, 2015
Finding Your Scientific Voice

On two successive morning workshops you will learn to use theatrical and performance techniques to create amazing beginnings to your talks, whether you have one minute, three minutes, ten minutes or an hour.

Melanie Dreyer-Lude and Itai Cohen will again join forces to teach and critique you so every audience will be engaged and your research story will resonate. Expect lots of on-camera practice and peer review to make your talk exceptional.

Find your scientific voice on December 7 & 8 from 9-12noon each day. You must be able to attend both sessions. Limited slots available. By application only.

We are also seeking a TA (unpaid) to man the camera.

Homework for the BEST Workshop "Finding Your Research Voice"

1. Enroll in “Finding Your Scientific Voice” via Blackboard using your netid.
Course-id  : SciComm03BEST-VARVAYANIS-Winter2015
Course Name: Finding Your Scientific Voice
To enroll, go to

2. Record your 10 minute research talk draft and upload it to Vimeo or YouTube (or the Blackboard platform) and alert Itai Cohen ( and Melanie Dreyer-Lude ( once you do. It does not have to be professional, nor polished.

The instructors personalize the workshop for participant needs. We will review your talk, speak about what we see during the workshop, and offer concrete tips for improvement. Uploading your 10 minute video is not a requirement to participate but it will greatly increase the value of your participation.

Your 10 minute talk should cover something you would present at a conference, perhaps in a longer format. An hour-long talk is often comprised of three separate but linked 10 minute talks.  Choose the research idea that you are most passionate about as the subject for your talk.

3. Create a 1 minute (approximate) Elevator Pitch of your core research message. It should include who you are, what you do, what you’ve found, and why it is important.

This is a short persuasive speech about you and your work.  It should last no longer than an elevator ride (30 seconds to 2 minutes) and should be carefully crafted to maximize both information and interest during short encounters with important contacts. 

An elevator pitch is a 3-4 sentence summary of the main point of your talk.

         a) Identify the problem and why it is so important.

         b) Explain why this has not yet been solved.

         c) Explain how you will solve and why you are the person to do it.

We will use your Elevator Pitch to hone your core message and to work on your performance skills. 

You may write it down and email it to us ahead of time if you would like feedback prior to the workshop.

609 Clark Hall
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