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LEXINGTON, Ky. (Oct. 24, 2022) — The University of Kentucky Office of Undergraduate Research (OUR) is proud to announce the fourth annual 5-Minute Fast Track Research Competition finalists. These undergraduates competed in the competition’s preliminary round and were selected as Top 10 finalists to present their research during the final round 5-7:30 p.m. Wednesday, Oct. 26, in The Cornerstone’s eSports Theater.

Finalists will present their research in five minutes in front of a panel of judges and a live audience using only a single static slide. This challenges students to develop their academic, presentation and research communication skills while also allowing them to showcase their research in a captivating way.

The goal of this competition is to improve undergraduate students’ abilities to communicate their research effectively to a general non-specialist audience while creating a compelling story about their scholarly work.

Students compete for cash prizes: $750 for first place, $500 for second place and $250 for third place.

2022 Top 10 Finalists

  • Artin Asadipooya — junior, Lewis Honors neuroscience major; Mentor: Pavel Ortinski, Ph.D., Neuroscience, College of Medicine

  • Patrick Bidros — senior, Lewis Honors biology major; Mentor: Yasir Al Siraj, Ph.D., Pharmacology and Nutritional Sciences, College of Medicine

  • Kayli Bolton — junior, Lewis Honors biology major; Mentor: Matthew Gentry, Ph.D., Molecular and Cellular Biochemistry, College of Medicine

  • Isha Chauhan — junior, Lewis Honors biology major; Mentor: Gregory Graf, Ph.D., Physiology, College of Medicine

  • McKenna Clinch — junior, chemical engineering major; Mentor: Bryan Beckingham, Ph.D., Chemical Engineering, Samuel Gin College of Engineering (Auburn University)

  • Tanner Durst — senior, Lewis Honors biology major; Mentor: Sarah D’Orazio, Ph.D., Microbiology, Immunology and Molecular Genetics, College of Medicine

  • Chase Eastham — junior, Lewis Honors agricultural and medical biotechnology major; Mentor: Peter Nagy, Ph.D., Plant Pathology, College of Agriculture, Food, and Environment

  • Emily Keaton — senior, Lewis Honors sociology, neuroscience, philosophy, and English major; Mentor: Jerrod Penn, Ph.D., Agricultural Economics, College of Agriculture (Louisiana State University)

  • Lexi Nolletti — senior, Lewis Honors neuroscience major; Mentor: David Rodgers, Ph.D., Molecular and Cellular Biochemistry, College of Medicine

  • Caroline Youdes — junior, Lewis Honors biology major; Mentor: Zhenheng Guo, Ph.D., Pharmacology and Nutritional Sciences, College of Medicine

The 2022 5-Minute Fast Track Research Competition is sponsored by the UK Office of Undergraduate Research. The event is open to the public.

For more information on the competition, visit

The University of Kentucky is increasingly the first choice for students, faculty and staff to pursue their passions and their professional goals. In the last two years, Forbes has named UK among the best employers for diversity, and INSIGHT into Diversity recognized us as a Diversity Champion four years running. UK is ranked among the top 30 campuses in the nation for LGBTQ* inclusion and safety. UK has been judged a “Great College to Work for" three years in a row, and UK is among only 22 universities in the country on Forbes' list of "America's Best Employers."  We are ranked among the top 10 percent of public institutions for research expenditures — a tangible symbol of our breadth and depth as a university focused on discovery that changes lives and communities. And our patients know and appreciate the fact that UK HealthCare has been named the state’s top hospital for five straight years. Accolades and honors are great. But they are more important for what they represent: the idea that creating a community of belonging and commitment to excellence is how we honor our mission to be not simply the University of Kentucky, but the University for Kentucky.


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