Students encouraged to give research talks, compete with pitches towards zero hunger

Zero Hunger is Sustainable Development Goal #2, part of the U.N. SDGs which encourage global cooperation to address these complex challenges
Saturday, March 27, 2021

Students encouraged to give research talks, compete with pitches towards zero hunger

The University of Nebraska-Lincoln is proud to join the Deaton Institute for University Leadership in International Development at the University of Missouri, alongside national and international partners, to participate in the inaugural "Within Reach" conference, with the theme of Zero Hunger, hosted virtually on April 12-15, 2021. Nebraska continues to use the U.N. Sustainable Development Goals as a lens through which we can analyze and mobilize our work towards grand global challenges. This opportunity provides an exciting way to articulate how the campus community is addressing SDG number two: Zero Hunger

With renowned World Food Prize Laureates, international food security powerhouses, and many scientists, business executives, engineers and others, this conference will inspire, empower, and challenge students and educators to take action against hunger in a world plagued by the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, virtual education, and economic hardship.

There are numerous student opportunities we encourage interested individuals to participate in: 

Pitch Competition
The Within Reach: Zero Hunger pitch competition seeks to illuminate the creativity and drive of university students by providing a platform for students to share their boldest ideas for ending hunger. Pitches should describe community program, social enterprise, or new nonprofit concepts that break the mold, clearly moving the needle toward eliminating hunger. Students may submit as individuals, as a group, or as representatives of an existing organization. However, students must exhibit that they are the project or program leader, and students must not have already implemented the idea. To compete in the pitch competition, students must first submit a written proposal due by April 4. Up to 12 written proposals will be selected as finalists and be extended an invitation to present a 5-minute pitch in the live competition on April 12 at 6-7PM Central Time. All written proposals will receive generous feedback from judges and conference attendees. Students must register for the conference to participate in the pitch competition.

Research Flash Talks
The Within Reach: Zero Hunger research flash talk session is an opportunity for high school, college, and university students to share their research and its application to solving real-world issues surrounding food insecurity. Selected student presenters may deliver a 3-minute pre-recorded talk highlighting their research focused on some aspect of hunger relief. Abstracts (up to 250 words) briefly detailing background, methods, results, and applications to food insecurity will be reviewed on a rolling basis until April 4. Within Reach: Zero Hunger will take place virtually on April 12-15 and presenters should plan to upload their talks to the conference platform by April 7. Research flash talks will be available to view for the duration of the conference. Presenters have the option of joining a private roundtable of experts in their research area and other student presenters to discuss their research. Although the central theme of our conference is zero hunger, we may consider abstracts focused on related topics such as poverty alleviation, public health, and agricultural innovations.

Even if students are not interested in participating in these specific ways, we invite anyone to participate in the conference more broadly. UNL faculty, staff and students are able to join for free using code "2021WR-UNIVNEBRASKALINCOLN."

Keynote speakers for the conference include:
-Vimlendra Sharan, Director of FAO North America
-Catherine Bertini, former Executive Director of World Food Program
-Roger Thurow, acclaimed journalist and author
-Rob Bertram, USAID Chief Scientist
-Dan Glickman, former USDA Secretary
-Ertharin Cousin, former US Ambassador to the UN Missions of Food and Agriculture

Students, you can also get professional written feedback on your resume, plus numerous networking and breakout opportunities with entry- and mid-level professionals.

For more information contact Brianne Wolf at