Mineral & Metallurgical Processing (MPD) Division Student Poster Contest


Started in 2010 by the Mineral & Metallurgical Processing (MPD) Division as a way to encourage and foster the next generation of mineral-processing and metallurgy professionals and support their academic achievements, the MPD Student Poster Contest has proved to be highly successful, welcoming graduate and undergraduate participants from a diversity of universities. Each year, students submit their abstracts online and then display their posters at the MPD Luncheon held during the SME Annual Conference & Expo. They explain their research in person to a panel of judges selected from industry, academia and the MPD division leadership, who review the quality of abstracts, posters and presentations to determine the winners.

Students have the opportunity to show off their work and a chance to put cash in their pockets to further their education. In addition, each poster submission receives a complimentary ticket to the MPD Luncheon.

Beyond the monetary incentive is the invaluable chance to network. Held just before the MPD Luncheon for all SME members to attend, the poster presentations provide a platform for professionals to talk with the students about their work. Business cards are often exchanged, providing students with a professional contact that might be able to provide some insight into their research as well as a point of contact with a company or organization that could be helpful when looking for a full-time position.

MPD Student Poster Contest

SME's Mineral & Metallurgical Processing Division (MPD) invites all interested students to participate in its Student Poster Contest in conjunction with the SME Annual Conference & Expo.  This is an excellent opportunity for students to present their research in a fun environment and to network with industry professionals.

Contest Details:

  • There will be two levels of judging: graduate students and undergraduate students.

  • Each level will have two phases of judging: abstracts and poster presentations.

  • Prizes for graduate students: $1,000 for 1st; $500 for 2nd; $200 for 3rd-7th

  • Prizes for undergraduate students: $1,000 for 1st; $500 for 2nd; $250 for 3rd

  • Nonplacing participants will receive $125 each.

  • All participants will receive a complimentary ticket to the MPD Luncheon held on Wednesday.

  • Luncheon tickets will be for the author only.

Contest Format:

  • Participants will submit a 1-page abstract by Jan. 31.

  • Poster presentations will be the morning of the MPD Luncheon on Wednesday.

  • Each student will have 5 minutes to explain their research to a group of judges.

  • Judging will focus on the quality of abstracts, posters and presentation.

  • Winners will be announced during the MPD Luncheon.

To Qualify and Enter:

  • To qualify, you must be currently enrolled in an undergraduate or graduate program at an accredited university and must be registered and have made plans to attend the SME Annual Conference & Expo.

  • To enter, submit your 1-page abstract to SMEMPDPosters@gmail.com by Jan. 31.

  • All entries must be from individual students (i.e., co-authors may only be research advisors).


  • 1-page abstract submitted by Jan. 31.

  • The MPD Poster Session is scheduled for the morning of the MPD Luncheon on Wednesday.

  • We recommend posters are prepared and approved by research sponsors by Feb. 14.

  • Failure to follow the guidelines and due dates listed here may result in ineligibility.

Formatting requirements:


  • 1 page (including text and graphics); 8.5” x 11” paper size; 1” margins.

  • Format per the separately provided template.

  • You must submit as a PDF file; the file name should have the following format “(your last name)(your first name)_MPD contest (year of contest).pdf”

  • Send your PDF file to SMEMPDPosters@gmail.com


  • A poster size of 44” x 35” is suggested, but not required.

  • Many helpful guides to poster design are available and can be found online.

  • You must hang your poster in the session area at least 15 minutes prior to the beginning of the session (location and time to be announced).

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