Graduate Students Helping Organize 2021 ComSciCon-Atlanta

Annual workshop helps participants hone their science communication skills

Kritika Gupta

OXFORD, Miss. – Two University of Mississippi students are co-organizers of an upcoming workshop aimed at helping graduate students in the Southeast hone their skills in science communication.

Sumeet Kulkarni, a doctoral candidate in the Department of Physics and Astronomy, and Kritika Gupta, a doctoral student from the Department of Nutrition and Hospitality Management, are helping organize ComSciCon-Atlanta. The virtual meeting is set for March 18-19, 2021.

ComSciCon attendees meet and interact with professional communicators, network with graduate students in all fields of science and engineering from across the U.S. and Canada, and write and publish original works. The program details are being developed, and applications are due at midnight Nov. 29.

“The response and enthusiasm from applicants have been great,” Gupta said. “This year will be our fourth year organizing ComSciCon-Atlanta.”

ComSciCon-Atlanta 2020 was originally planned as a two-day, in-person workshop March 12-13, 2020 at the University of Georgia. Amidst the COVID-19 lockdown, it was transformed to a hybrid platform.

“The workshop helped us greatly in improving our writing skills – via write-a-thon – and also had training on video making and Adobe 101,” said Gupta, who is set to start her free BootCamp programs this winter, thus making science accessible to everyone. “The best part of this workshop series is highly rigorous, individualized feedback on our work.”

Kulkarni said that attending ComSciCon greatly influenced their science communication activities.

Sumeet Kulkarni

“As an organizer of the Oxford Science Cafe, I started a new science podcast called “Ssippin’ Science” to accompany it,” he said. “Previous ComSciCon events have also helped me publish in outlets such as Scientific American.

“Kritika is a Soapbox Science speaker and hosts a weekly, live talk show interviewing scientists around the globe.”

Other members of the six-person planning committee are from the University of Georgia, Vanderbilt University and Clemson University.

“This is an exciting thing,” said Annette Kluck, dean of the Ole Miss Graduate School and professor of leadership and counselor education. “Sumeet and Kritika are exemplary student scientists whose work both with this event and on their own respective projects are raising awareness of the university’s graduate instruction.”

Campus sponsors for ComSciCon-Atlanta include the Office of Research and Sponsored Programs, College of Liberal Arts, Division of Diversity and Community Engagement, Office of Student Affairs and the Graduate School.

For more information, visit To apply, visit