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Showcase: Thesis contest, faculty address celebrate WSU

EmilyJohnsonPULLMAN, Wash. – Emily Johnson, a Ph.D. candidate from the College of Pharmacy, won Washington State University’s first universitywide Three Minute Thesis competition Thursday.

The event, part of WSU’s annual Showcase celebration of faculty, staff and student excellence, was sponsored by the Office of the Provost. Another Showcase event, the Distinguished Faculty Address by the School of Music’s Gerald Berthiaume, also was Thursday.

Music professor Gerald B. Berthiaume talks about composers and technique during his 2015 Distinguished Faculty Address, “From the Practice Room to the Stage: Do Your Research,” on Thursday. (Photo by Dean Hare, WSU Photo Services)

Johnson studies pharmaceutical sciences – specifically how anti-cancer drugs affect sugar metabolism and heart health. She hopes her research will lead to a new way of combating heart disease in diabetics.

3MT was developed by the University of Queensland (Australia) and is a competition for doctoral candidates. Contestants have three minutes to deliver their thesis to an audience, including a panel of judges.

Each of the five contestants won an event at their respective colleges in order to qualify for the universitywide event.

Johnson will receive $3,000 toward attendance at a research conference of her choice.

Second place was Robert Zinna, an entomology Ph.D. candidate from the College of Agricultural, Human and Natural Resource Sciences, who receives $1,500. Third place was Kent Godfrey, an interdisciplinary studies Ph.D. in the College of Education, who received $500.

More about the event can be found at



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