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Stupka Symposium 2019

Raised toward our $2,000 Goal
25 Donors
Project has ended
Project ended on April 12, at 05:00 PM CDT
Project Owners

Stupka Symposium 2019

Are you still accepting donations? 

Absolutely! Any further funds we raise will be placed into a fund with the goal of future endowment.


What is the Stupka Symposium?

The Stupka Undergraduate Research Symposium came from the mind of Robert "Rob" J. Stupka III (picture to the right), an undergraduate student, in the fall of 2005. He and his fellow classmates worked to turn this idea into a reality; however, Rob would not see the symposium he worked so fervently to plan. On November 30, 2005, his life ended after a pedestrian-vehicle accident in front of the Molecular Biology Building. Rob envisioned the symposium to be an opportunity for undergraduate students to showcase their research and experience the need for communication in science. Rob's contagious enthusiasm drove his classmates to hold the first symposium in the spring of 2006; the enthusiasm has never gone away. Undergraduates, inspired by Rob's vision and story, have continued to lead and plan 13 consecutive, annual symposia.


Each year, the undergraduates who plan the symposium do their best to leave their legacy on this tradition and fulfill Rob's vision. At the symposium, around 40 undergraduate students are given the opportunity to present a poster showcasing their research, and several students are chosen to present their research in a keynote presentation. Additionally, the planning committee chooses two scientists from across the country and one alumni to verbally present their research. The symposium has evolved to give undergraduate students the most opportunities to interact with each other and the invited speakers to discuss science- this happens through a day filled with open-house poster sessions and a candid breakfast and lunch. With each symposium, we see a rise in attendance; last year, we had nearly 200 students, faculty, and other scientists join us.


Why should I donate?

You are reading this because we need your help. One of our greatest (both in priority and cost) expenses is associated with our outside speakers. We pay for their travel, hotel, and food costs - this comes to about $3000-$4000. The speakers give all attendees, especially undergraduate students, the unique opportunity to learn about other topics in biochemistry that they normally wouldn't hear about in class or in their own labs, a chance to engage with the speakers over lunch and poster sessions, and the opportunity to experience the environment of a professional conference. The 2019 Symposium will feature speakers Dr. Craig Pikaard, Distinguished Professor and Carlos O. Miller Professor at the University of Indiana, and Dr. Joan Steitz, the Sterling Professor of Molecular Biophysics and Biochemistry at Yale University. Additionally, Dr. Matt Mead, a post-doctoral researcher at Vanderbilt University in the lab of Dr. Antonis Rokas, will be attending as our alumni speaker. Additionally, any extra money raised through this FundISU is placed into a fund with the goal of future endowment. Thank you for your support of the symposium! 


If you would like to know more about us, please visit our website: If you have any questions, feel free to contact anyone under the "Project Owners" section on this page - our email addresses are available if you click on our pictures.


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