2024 Scholars’ Symposium

The University of Maine at Fort Kent will host its twelfth annual Scholars’ Symposium on Wednesday, April 24th, on the UMFK campus. The theme of this year’s event is “One Health.” The symposium is open to the public.

“The UMFK Scholars’ Symposium (April 24, 8:30 am to 4 pm) is an annual celebration of student achievement and engagement where students have an opportunity to share their academic research through poster projects and presentations. At 11 am, invited keynote presenter Tristan Burgess (Center for Wildlife Studies) will speak to the One Health theme of the Symposium through his talk titled Spillover: How do we REALLY prevent pandemics?” said Dr. Kennedy “Ned” Rubert-Nason, UMFK assistant professor of chemistry and the Scholars’ Symposium chair.

Wednesday morning, the symposium will begin with a welcome from UMFK President Dr. Deb Hedeen at 8:30 a.m. in Fox Auditorium, followed by the undergraduate awards presented by Dr. Hedeen.

You will hear from UMFK faculty members, who will speak on “What is One Health and how can AI inform it?” Then, at 9 a.m., we will hear UMFK students’ research presentations.

Beginning at 11 a.m., keynote speaker Dr. Tristan Burgess will speak to the UMFK campus community at 11 a.m. in Fox.

Dr. Burgess is a co-founder, vice president for Science and Education, and assistant professor of Wildlife Health and Epidemiology at the Center for Wildlife Studies. He specializes in wildlife veterinary medicine and epidemiology, focusing on marine mammal health and emerging pandemic threats. He received his Bachelor of Veterinary Science from Massey University and a Ph.D. in Wildlife Epidemiology from UC Davis. Widely published, Dr. Burgess’ research interests concern the impacts of environmental health and disease on wildlife conservation efforts, the effects of disease on ecosystems, and the intersection of behavioral/foraging ecology and wildlife health. A question and answer session will follow his presentation.

The afternoon continues to highlight students’ research with poster sessions and presentations, and the students will answer questions about their methodologies and findings at the Sports Center from 1:00 pm to 4 p.m.

UMFK offers multiple degree paths, which lead to associate, bachelor, and master’s degrees. For a complete program listing and more information, please visit the UMFK website at umfk.edu.

If you’re interested in attending the symposium, please register at the UMFK Symposium webpage.

For more information on the Scholars’ Symposium, please contact Dr. Rubert-Nason at kennedy.rubertnason@maine.edu.