Doctoral candidate Theresa Smith (pictured on left) studies the role of exercise in protecting older adults from the cognitive decline associated with Alzheimer's disease.

February 9, 2017

Kinesiology doctoral student Theresa Smith was named the runner-up in the 2016 UMD Three-Minute Thesis Competition, which was hosted by the University of Maryland Graduate School. The competition requires doctoral students to explain their thesis in a three-minute speech, which entails summarizing research in a concise and easily understandable way. See Ms. Smith's video, below.

The deadline for the annual competition is approaching again, and to help students prepare, the Graduate School Writing Center is holding two 3MT  Workshops on February 28 and March 1. Interested post-candidacy doctoral students from all disciplines should register to attend the workshop .

Ms. Smith’s dissertation is entitled, “Walking Protects Brain Connections Destroyed in the Alzheimer’s Disease Progression.” Her dissertation advisor is Associate Professor J. Carson Smith of the Department of Kinesiology. 

Ms. Smith won $250 in research funds. The first prize winner of the internal competition, Gabrielle Betancourt-Martinez, a doctoral student in the Department of Astronomy, received $500 in research funds and will present at the Universitas 21 international 3MT Competition in October. The popular U21 3MT competition is designed to help students improve their communication skills, by requiring them to explain their research to a non-specialist audience.

Previously, Ms. Smith won the Elevator Speech Competition at Graduate Research Appreciation Day (GRAD), where she presented on how physical activity and exercise training affect brain networks, including explaining why physical activity appears to protect cognition in older adults. She found the process of condensing her research into a three-minute speech helpful for her development of her dissertation proposal outline, as well as challenging in terms of explaining her research to a lay audience.

At Public Health Research @ Maryland 2016, Ms. Smith’s research poster tied for first place in the doctoral student category.







Related Links

UMD Three-Minute Thesis Competition

Related People
Theresa Smith, J. Carson Smith