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GWIS National Meeting 2019
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national conference

98th annual national conference



Join us in Rapid City on June 20-22, 2019 to Celebrate and Communicate Science to Connect, Lead, and Empower!


All business meetings and conference activities will take place at:

          South Dakota School of Mines and Technology Surbeck Center

          501 E. St. Joseph St.

          Rapid City, SD 57701





Rapid City is in driving distance of a few larger cities including Denver and Sioux Falls. However, Rapid City Regional Airport (RAP) is the fastest and most convenient way to travel to and from Rapid City and the Black Hills. You can fly into Rapid City with Delta, United, American, and Allegiant Airlines. Rapid City Regional airport is the only rental car location in the area. The airport hosts many major car rental companies including Alamo, Avis, Budget, Enterprise, Hertz, and National. In addition, Uber, Lift, and taxis are available. If you would like transportation from the airport to SD Mines, please email at least 2 weeks prior to the conference.




A block of rooms has been reserved at Placer Hall located on the SD Mines campus. This new six-story building offers suite-style units, each with a living room and a bathroom. Built in an industrial-loft design, Placer features exposed ceilings, concrete floors, and exposed piping -- creating an urban oasis on campus. Air-conditioned suites equipped with 2 separate bedrooms, private bathroom, desk/chair, wardrobe, couch and coffee table. The building provides three community kitchens, large gaming lounge with pool table and three lounges.


We have secured a discounted rate of $62.55 (with current tax rate) for one room in the two-bedroom suite. Each person will receive a room with two beds that shares a bathroom with one other individual.


Please click here for room accommodations.




The South Dakota School of Mines has complimentary parking and encourages attendees to park in the main school parking lot in front of the Surbeck Center.




Many of your meals will be provided if you attend the business meetings. On campus dining services will be open including an Einstein Bros Bagels. Other options including dining in Downtown Rapid City, which is just a 10-minute walk away from SD Mines.



General program

Join us in Rapid City for the 2019 GWIS National Conference which will be held June 20-22 at the South Dakota School of Mines and Technology (SD Mines). The theme of this year’s conference is “Communicating Science to Connect, Lead, and Empower”!


On Thursday the GWIS National Council members will meet for the annual business meeting. All are welcome to join this meeting to learn more about GWIS leadership!


On Friday we will host the Grand Chapter meeting. Everyone is welcome, and Chapter Presidents and National Liaisons are especially encouraged to attend.


For individuals not attending the Grand Chapter meeting on Friday, we have all sorts of activities planned! We have the option of a full day trip to receive a tour of the Sanford Underground Research Facility (SURF) or participate in an afternoon Science Communication Workshop. SURF is located 4,850 feet below ground and is home to world-leading research in physics, biology, geology, and engineering.


Friday night we will gather for a field trip and networking social! The field trip includes a science drive through the Black Hills, a wine tasting and dinner at Prairie Berry Winery, a visit to Mt. Rushmore!


On Saturday, our “Communicating Science to Connect, Lead, and Empower” conference will begin at 11 am in the Surbeck Ballroom at SD Mines. We will begin with a welcome address, followed by lunch and an opening speaker. We will then have a panel and three speakers who will give tips and share their experiences on communicating. After the speakers, we will have an afternoon tea and networking opportunity with exhibitors from 3:30 - 5:30. During this time, we will also have a poster session from 3:30 - 4:30 pm, and a lightning talk session from 4:30 - 5:30 pm. We will conclude the evening with a dinner and a keynote speaker.





Opening Speaker: Tatewin Means

Tatewin Means is the Executive Director of the Thunder Valley Community Development Corporation. She received her Bachelor of Science degree from Stanford University in Environmental Engineering with a minor in Comparative Studies in Race and Ethnicity.  A longtime advocate for human rights, survivors, children, and families, Tatewin Means served as the Attorney General for the Oglala Sioux Tribe on the Pine Ridge Indian Reservation in South Dakota from 2012-2017.


Keynote Speaker: Cabot-Ann Christofferson

Cabot-Ann Christofferson is the Liaison for the MAJORANA Demonstrator to Sandford Underground Research Facility. She has a B.S. in Chemistry and an M.S. in Material Science and Engineering with an emphasis in Organic Synthesis on electrically conducting polymers. Cabot-Ann has worked in many different fields of chemistry from chemical weapons detection, rheology, chemical instrumentation, and environmental testing.


Showcase your scientific research, practice scientific communication skills, and network with scientists from across the country! On Saturday, June 22, the poster session will take place from 3:30-4:30pm and the "lightning talk" session will take place from 4:30-5:30pm. The poster and talk sessions are open to all, you do not need to be a GWIS member. The presentation competition is limited to undergraduates, graduate students, and postdoctoral researchers. Posters and talks will be judged by GWIS members who work in various STEM fields. Presentations should be geared toward individuals of diverse fields and levels of scientific knowledge. The top two posters and the top talk that accomplish this goal will receive an award. Abstracts should be limited to 250 words. Posters or presentations presented at other conferences (either previously or upcoming) are allowed and encouraged. Poster presentation size is 34 inches by 44 inches or smaller. We will affix the posters to the boards with clips. Talks are limited to 8 minutes, and you will not be allowed to go over this time limit. To present a poster or give a talk, you must register for the conference. 


Abstracts are due by April 22, 2019




Schedule of Events

*subject to change

Thursday, June 20, 2019

9:00 - 5:00 pm -- National Council Meeting



Friday, June 21, 2019

8:00 - 1:00 pm -- Grand Chapter Meeting


9:30 - 5:00 pm – Sanford Underground Research Facility Tour


1:00 - 4:00 pm – Science Communication Workshop


5:30 - 10:00 pm – Tour of Mount Rushmore and Networking Social at Prairie Berry Winery


Saturday, June 22, 2019

10:00 am -- Conference Registration Opens


11:00 am -- Welcome Address


11:30 am -- Lunch and Opening Speaker


1:00 pm -- Connect Speaker


1:30 pm -- Lead Speaker


2:00 pm -- Communicating for Success Panel


3:00 pm -- Empower Speaker


3:30 - 5:30 pm -- Afternoon Tea with Exhibitors


3:30 - 4:30 pm -- Poster Session


4:30 - 5:30 pm -- Lightning Talks


6:00 pm -- Banquet


7:00 pm -- Keynote Speaker


For more details click here.


Conference Packages

Package Activity GWIS Members Non-Members

Thursday National Council Meeting

9:00 - 5:00 pm

Includes breakfast, snacks, and lunch

$40 $50

Friday Grand Chapter Meeting

8:00 - 1:00 pm

Includes breakfast, snacks, and lunch

$40 $50

Friday SURF Field Trip

9:30 - 5:00 pm

Includes roundtrip transportation from SD Mines and lunch

$10 $10

Friday Science Communication Workshop

1:00 - 4:00 pm

Includes afternoon snack

$10 $10

Friday Networking Social

5:30 - 10:00 pm

Includes roundtrip transportation from SD Mines and dinner $50 $60

Saturday Conference and Banquet

11:00 - 9:00 pm

Includes lunch, afternoon tea, and dinner
$100 $120

Saturday Conference Only

11:00 - 5:30 pm

Includes lunch and afternoon tea
$75 $100

Saturday Banquet Only

5:30 - 9:00 pm

Includes dinner
$50 $60

We know it’s a lot of options, so if you have questions, don’t hesitate to ask! Just email and we will be happy to answer!




Join us in Rapid City on June 20-22, 2019 to Celebrate and Communicate Science to Connect, Lead, and Empower!




For more details click here.



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