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USD Graduate School to Host Annual Three Minute Thesis Competition

Andrea Fencl headshot Andrea Fencl was the 2020 3MT Competition second-place winner. The title of her project was "Changing the Consent Scene: Connecting BDSM Consent Practices to Non-BDSM Dating on College Campuses."

VERMILLION, S.D – The University of South Dakota is set to host the fourth annual Three Minute Thesis (3MT) Competition. The preliminary round takes place Thursday, Feb. 11 from 3-5 p.m., followed by finals on Wednesday, Feb. 17 from 3-5 p.m., in the Muenster University Center B/C.

The 3MT is a communication competition where students present a compelling oration on their research thesis and its significance in under three minutes. The competition challenges students to consolidate and present their ideas and research discoveries to a non-specialist audience, and they are given a platform to expand their communication speaking and overall presentation skills.

“3MT is a great way to learn about other graduate students' research across disciplines,” said Andrea Fencl, M.A. candidate in communication studies and second-place winner of the 2020 3MT Competition. “When you're in grad school, you're pretty unaware of the research going on outside your cohort. I learned of so many amazing ideas and studies that are coming from USD students.”

The competition will be open to the public with limited seating, and it will also be livestreamed online through the USD Graduate School Facebook page.

To learn more about the competition, visit


USD is the largest provider of graduate education in the state of South Dakota, with 78 graduate and professional programs. The mission of the Graduate School is to provide high-quality graduate programs in the liberal arts and sciences, education, business, fine arts, law and medicine; to promote excellence in teaching and learning; and to support research and creative scholarship. In partnership with individual degree programs, we accomplish this mission by providing students with excellent academic preparation and extraordinary opportunities for research, creative scholarship, clinical experiences and internships.


Founded in 1862 and the first university in the Dakotas, the University of South Dakota is the only public liberal arts university in the state, with 202 undergraduate and 84 graduate programs in the College of Arts & Sciences, School of Education, Knudson School of Law, Sanford School of Medicine, School of Health Sciences, Beacom School of Business and College of Fine Arts. With an enrollment of nearly 10,000 students and more than 400 faculty, USD has a 16:1 student/faculty ratio, and it ranks among the best in academics and affordability. USD’s 18 athletic programs compete at the NCAA Division I level.


Hanna DeLange
USD News