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Sessions & Topics 2024

Here you can find information about the session types and topics for the MINDS Conference 2024.

For information about the conference schedule, click here.

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Sessions & Topics
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W Neurodiversity

Mental health is an intersectional issue & MINDS aims to cover a range of important related topics. These topics will be presented as one of four different session types, each one hour in duration, ranging from being predominantly informational (workshops and panels) to more interactive (roundtables and discussion groups). Read more about the session formats & topics below.

Workshop Sessions

Workshops are 60-minute sessions created by Dragonfly Mental Health. These sessions include a lecture component and an expert-facilitated discussion on topics to increase mental health literacy.

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The high interdependency between supervisor and supervised, combined with the pressure to succeed, makes power abuse commonplace in Academia. This is a seminar and facilitated discussion which includes definitions and examples and goes deeper. It offers insights and encourages discussion on why this is so common and what can be done by early career researchers to drive change in their own communities.
In this seminar, we cover the definition, prevalence, and consequences of power abuse in academia. In addition, provide an overview of what victims can do and emphasize specific actions to drive positive change within a group or institution.

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Misconceptions about neurodiversity are widespread, leading to a lack of understanding about what causes it, who is at risk, and how it manifests. Increasingly, this is being recognized as a significant challenge within academia and our seminar aims to address these misunderstandings as well as equip academics with the knowledge needed to foster an inclusive academic environment.
This is a seminar and facilitated discussion that includes information about the prevalence of neurodiversity in both general and academic populations, an overview of neurodiversity-related signs and symptoms often observed in academic settings, and potential solutions to support for neurodiverse individuals within academia.   

MINDS Exchange

Submit a MINDS Exchange abstract here by Friday, March 15th, 2024 at 23:59 EDT!

This exciting session is a unique platform where presenters from various institutions will share their valuable experiences and insights into implementing mental health initiatives at their respective institutions. The session aims to showcase a diverse range of approaches, providing a comprehensive view of effective mental health strategies, which can include (but not limited to) workshops, podcasts, regular coffee hours, conferences, departmental retreats, and more! Attendees can expect to gain practical knowledge, innovative ideas, and actionable insights that they can leverage in their own institutions. 

  1. We invite interested attendees to submit 1,500-character abstracts by Friday, March 15th at 23:59 EDT about their exciting initiatives during the registration process, outlining the details of their initiatives, how they were conducted, and any feedback received.

  2. The committee will organize presenters into themes before the session and notify presenters by Monday, April 8th.

  3. Accepted presenters will then be requested to prepare a single static PowerPoint slide visualizing their initiatives, which will be posted on our website before the event.

  4. Within the session, each theme will have a designated Zoom breakout room, where presenters will briefly discuss their initiatives using their non-animated single slides (up to 3 minutes), followed by an open Q&A session with attendees.

  5. Attendees will have the flexibility to rotate across breakout rooms as they desire.


The website will be updated with the MINDS Exchange topics closer to the conference date!

Panel Sessions

Panelists share their stories and experiences relating to mental health with the audience. These 90-minute sessions will begin with moderated panel questions followed by audience questions to the panelists.

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This panel discussion will focus on the crucial role mentorship plays in fostering academic growth and success. This engaging session will feature panelists who are at different levels of seniority and/or career states who will discuss not only the impact of mentorship on their personal and professional development, but also the benefits and pitfalls of mentoring in Academia. This will allow for a multi-level, integrative approach in addressing issues we come across within mentorship in Academia and help us brainstorm ways to cultivate a supportive and inclusive academic community for current and future academics. 

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No one journey in Academia is the same, and the narrative around everyone having to follow the same “recipe” for success is not attainable. The upcoming panel discussion on diversity in academia will delve into the vital topic of fostering inclusivity and representation in educational institutions. Panelists, each with a unique perspective, will engage in discussing the vast diversity found in Academia and how to overcome some of the associated barriers, as well as the intersectionality of them. The discussion will explore strategies for promoting equity, dismantling barriers, and creating a more inclusive academic environment that values and celebrates diversity. Attendees can anticipate gaining valuable insights into the challenges faced by underrepresented groups, as well as actionable steps to cultivate an academic landscape that embraces the diverse experiences and perspectives.

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