Brennan Ferguson, a Ph.D. candidate in the environmental engineering and earth sciences program, took top honors in the Doctoral Candidate category of the 2020-2021 Three-Minute Thesis (3MT) competition. Ferguson will represent Clemson at the Southern Council of Graduate Schools’ 3MT competition at the group’s virtual conference on February 24-26, 2021.

Brennan Ferguson portrait
Brennan Ferguson

Twenty-eight graduate students representing every college summarized and explained the relevance of their research in three minutes or less and were judged on clarity, presentation, and more. The Ph.D. candidate runner-up was Moazzam Nazir of the Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering. In the Ph.D. student/master’s student category* Amber Stone, M.S. student in animal and veterinary science, took first place, and Emma Chiappetta, M.Ed. student from the teaching and learning program was named runner-up.

Sponsored at Clemson by Graduate Student Government (GSG), the Graduate School, the Vice President for Research, and the colleges, the competition encourages students to develop and hone communication skills they need as professionals but often don’t focus on as part of their usual studies. Founded at the University of Queensland, 3MT has become a national hallmark of graduate schools across the United States.

The ’20-’21 competition was broadcast live online via Twitch, which allowed for easy access to Clemson students, faculty, staff and community members and resulted in a record-setting crowd that watched the event.

*A Ph.D. (or doctoral) candidate is a graduate student who has completed all the requirements of a doctoral program except writing and defending a dissertation. Ph.D. students are still in the coursework phase of their programs, and in 3MT no distinction between candidate and student is made for master’s degree students.