2015 Meeting – Student Mentor Session

2015 Meeting – Student Mentor Session

Wednesday, February 25, 3-5PM


The mentor session is a great opportunity for students to learn from and connect with professionals in a casual setting.

The first half of the session will include a 45 minute workshop-style lecture ” Ten Steps to Better Poster Design” on professional poster design guidelines and techniques led by Kathryn Ronnenberg. Kathryn is the copyright editor for Northwestern Naturalist, and a Research Information Specialist with the US Forest Service’s Aquatic Ecology and Management team in Corvallis, Oregon, where she specializes in graphic design and technical editing.

Posters are inherently visual media. A well-designed poster should grab the viewer’s attention and keep it, with compelling graphics, concise, understandable text, easy-to-read fonts, and an intuitive direction of information flow. Unfortunately, these paragons of poster design are few and far between at most conference poster sessions. All too often, a poster amounts to a slightly compressed, graphic-poor, version of a research paper, converted into awkward bullet points. So how can we create more effective, attractive posters? Begin with a focus on the your intended audience. Gather or create visuals of as many pieces of your information as possible, and make sure your color choices are accessible to all readers. Then tune and trim your text to cover your key points and fit your audience, and choose fonts and type sizes that are easy to read from a poster session distance. Attract attention with color and design, but don’t distract attention with too much pattern or too many heavy boxes. Take and give proper credit, and review your product carefully. Then prepare to meet your public with a handout and a rehearsal of your talking points. This workshop will lead you through some of the details of how to polish your posters into a better product.

Following the workshop, participants will have the opportunity to ask questions, network, learn about future job markets and develop contacts with individuals working in a variety of areas including biology, research, natural resource management and related fields.

Mentor Requirements

Mentors should be professionals interested in engaging students about how to prepare for a career in these fields. Mentors are only committing for a one-hour session with students but are encouraged to connect with students throughout the conference and help students network with other SNVB members and meeting attendees.

Sign Up

If you have more questions or would like to sign up as either a student participant or mentor, contact Erim Gomez, SNVB trustee: erimgomez@gmail.com.