A Biomedical Science PhD candidate is Griffith University's 2017 Three Minute Thesis (3MT) Champion.
Heidi Walkden won the judges over with her presentation encapsulating her research into how bacteria penetrates the brain's Central Nervous System by invading peripheral nerves.
A PhD candidate in Neuroscience and Microbiology, Heidi impressed the judging panel with her ability to distill a complex body of research and outcomes into a coherent and understandable three minute summation.
"I was really stunned at winning because there was so many great presentations and incredible research being articulated."
Working with both Menzies Health Institute of Queensland and Griffith Institute for Drug Discovery, Heidi completed her undergraduate with honours degree in Biomedical Science at QUT before moving to Griffith to begin her doctorate under the supervision of Associate Professor Jenny Ekberg.
Chairing the judging panel was Professor Sue Berners-Price, Dean, Griffith Graduate Research School. Alongside judges Ben Dobson (Media Manager, Griffith University) and Shannon Willoughby (CEO, Study Gold Coast), Professor Berners-Price had a difficult task to choose a winner.
“I am so proud of our PhD candidates, and all 13 of our finalists did a wonderful job.
“It came down to how clearly Ms Walkden articulated the impact of her research that won the night.”
Director of Griffith's Graduate Research School Dr Sharon Saunders praised all thirteen finalists saying the competition is now an integral part of the Graduate School's calendar
"The Three Minute Thesis is a great way for Griffith to showcase the remarkable research our Higher Degree Research (HDR) candidates are undertaking.
"The calibre of presentations was fantastic and to describe your research in just three minutes to a lay audience is a tremendous skill," Dr Saunders said.
Griffith Business School PhD candidate Api Movono was runner up with his presentation: "Tourism destinations as complex adaptive systems."
The People’s Choice award went to Health PhD candidate Maria Antonio for her presentation titled “International Trade in Health Services in the Philippines: Winner or Loser?”
Heidi will represent Griffith at the annual Asia-Pacific 3MT finals to be held at the University of Queensland at the end of September.
What is the 3 Minute Thesis competition?
Three Minute Thesis (3MT) celebrates the discoveries made by research students and encourages their skill in communicating the importance of research to the broader community.
3MT is an academic competition that challenges HDR candidates to describe their research within three minutes to a general audience. Developed by UQ it is now held at many universities across Australia, New Zealand and Asia.
The competition aims to inspire, motivate and empower higher-degree researchers in speaking about their work and helps participants acquire valuable presentation communication skills to help promote their research. Griffith 3MT offers finalists training masterclasses in presentation and communication skills.
All members of the Griffith community who are currently enrolled in a higher degree by research are able to participate in the Griffith rounds of the 3MT.