Photo collage of the Capitol Building rotunda and graduate students conducting poster presentations.

Capitol Graduate Research Summit

The Capitol Graduate Research Summit (CGRS) provides an opportunity for selected graduate students to expose state government, education officials, and the public to the quality of graduate research performed in the state of Kansas.

CGRS Website


March 21, 2023

State Capitol Building, Topeka, KS


December 18, 2023 - February 2, 2024 at 11:59 PM CST

The Office of Graduate Studies invites graduate students from all disciplines to apply to participate in the 21st Annual Capitol Graduate Research Summit. The event is an opportunity to show the State of Kansas the impactful research being conducted by graduate students at universities across the state.

Up to eight KU Lawrence campus students will be selected to join their peers from Kansas State University, The University of Kansas Medical Center, Pittsburg State University, Emporia State University, Fort Hays State University, and Wichita State University  in Topeka at the Capitol Building. The participating students will present their research in poster board format to legislators and other members of state government. 

The top presenters for each institution will be recognized at the Award Ceremony following the poster presentations. In addition, the top presenter for KU Lawrence will receive a $500 monetary award.

Required Professional Development

Students selected to represent KU in the Capitol Graduate Research Summit will be required to participate in the following two professional development events.

This workshop will focus on preparing CGRS representatives to present their research to a lay audience and particularly, to legislators.

The workshop will cover the importance of effective data visualization, how to choose the right chart for the data type, the best practices for designing charts and tables, including the use of color and chart elements.

To Do

We ask that CGRS representatives bring to the workshop a visualization that they intend to include on their poster for CGRS or the data they would like to visualize for their poster. Participants will work to improve an existing graph or visual and receive tools for creating and improving data visuals as part of this workshop. 

KU Lawrence CGRS representatives will have the opportunity to present a draft version of their poster in a similar exhibition format to the CGRS event. KU Research and Communications staff, faculty, and KU community members will serve as mock CGRS judges and CGRS event attendees in order for KU Lawrence CGRS representatives to be able to practice discussing their research with a non-specialist audience. Staff and faculty will also provide feedback on posters to support CGRS representatives in building the final versions of their poster for the CGRS event. 


To apply, please complete the online application by clicking on the button below. The application form requires a research abstract of no more than 250 words and an explanation for a general, non-academic audience of how your research impacts and benefits the state of Kansas, with a particular focus on economic and community development (also no more than 250 words).

Selection Criteria

Applications will be reviewed by a committee comprised of staff from the Office of Graduate Studies, Office of Research and the Office of Public Affairs. The review committee will focus on the following criteria to select the KU Lawrence CGRS representatives:

  • Clarity of research abstract
  • Alignment with interests of the state of Kansas
  • Evidence of impact and benefit to the state of Kansas

Frequently Asked Questions

If you need help writing the abstract, consider visiting the KU Writing Center. Additional advice may be found on the following websites:

UNC Writing Center on Abstracts
Wisconsin-Madison Writing Center on Abstracts

KU Lawrence CGRS presenters will receive a document providing guidance and basic tips to consider in preparing their posters. In addition, here are some resources that you can look at to prepare your poster:

The Capitol Graduate Research Summit is an opportunity for a select group of graduate students to share their research with State leaders. In the past, because of their research presentations, some participants have been invited to assist policymakers and state departments on issues of concern in Kansas. You will also have the opportunity to visit with your peers from other Kansas research universities. And, you might even win an award!

Complete the online application using the button below before midnight (11:59 PM CST) on Sunday, January 29, 2023. It is that easy!


Application Period: Dec. 18, 2023 - Feb. 2, 2024 at 11:59PM CST