Friday, September 19, 2014

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Jefferson Fellows Symposium Stirs Interdisciplinary Dialogue, Helps Recruit New Ph.D. Candidates

The Jefferson Scholars Foundation at the University of Virginia will host the 12th annual Jefferson Fellows Symposium on Friday, from 1 to 3 p.m., at the Jefferson Fellows Center at 112 Clarke Court.

Free and open to the public, the symposium will feature presentations from 11 graduate students at U.Va., who are currently working toward Ph.D., M.B.A. or J.D. degrees. All 11 hold highly selective Jefferson Fellowships and represent the departments of Art History, Biology, English, Environmental Sciences, Physics and Religious Studies in the Graduate School of Arts & Sciences; the department of Systems and Information Engineering in the School of Engineering and Applied Science; and the Darden School of Business and School of Law.

Presentation topics range from an in-depth review of the primary drivers of national debt to the local policy choices responsible for reshaping the future of Charlottesville’s West Main Street.  Other topics include the development of a pilot program in Cambodia that offers engineering education to orphans, the varying pressures of natural selection between male and female lizards and the excavation of an ancient Sicilian town known as Morgantina.  

“We are so pleased with the broad interdisciplinary scope of this year’s event,” said Bill Wilson, director of the Jefferson Fellows Program. “To have 11 different discussions taking place under one roof on a wide range of issues that affect us at the local, national and global levels is quite remarkable and a reflection of the dynamic nature of the Jefferson Fellows Program.”

While at U.Va., Jefferson Fellows are charged with enhancing the quality of the undergraduate and graduate learning experience. The Jefferson Fellows Symposium is an outcome of this goal and additionally serves as a recruiting tool for new students.

Among the audience members will be approximately 60 Ph.D. nominees from six different countries, including the U.S., China, Russia and the United Kingdom, all of whom are competing for the Jefferson Scholars Foundation’s merit graduate fellowships. 

For information about the 12th Annual Jefferson Fellows Symposium, call 434-243-9029.

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