What is SEDTalks!?

First launched in 2016, SEDTalks! is an educational and skills-building series for graduate students in McGill's Faculty of Engineering. 

SEDTalks! provides support to graduate students working in sustainability so that they may develop professional skills in public-speaking, communicating sustainability science and engineering to a wider audience, expanding their academic and industrial networks, and working with researchers to further advance sustainable engineering and design in one of these three areas:

  • Sustainable Industrial Processes & Manufacturing
  • Renewable Energy & Energy Efficiency
  • Sustainable Urban Infrastructure & Transportation


Selected graduate students, known as SEDTalks! "ChangeMakers", receive professional training and support to prepare a presentation of their work at a prestigious networking event organized by TISED at the end of the winter semester. Invited event guests include donors who support SEDTalks!, industry members, faculty members, and others. Changemakers also receive a small bursary for their participation in the program, as well as free networking cards and professional portraits.


Applications for the 2018 SEDTalks! are now closed. Stay tuned for info about our SEDTalks event!


Training & Skills-Building

ChangeMakers receive professional training to build networking and communication skills. Through coaching and filmed practice sessions, ChangeMakers receive feedbackon their performance and can see their progress over time. Some of the skills ChangeMakers will master include:

Communication Presentation Networking

Translate your research for non-specialists without “dumbing it down”

PowerPoint : the Do’s & Don’ts

Create effective business cards

Keep audiences engaged

Data visualization

Make academic and industry connections

Lead effective discussions & handle tough questions

Lightning talks Get professional portraits
Make an impact in sustainability  Video practice sessions Boost your CV


How to Apply to SEDTalks!


You are eligible to submit an entry for SEDTalks! if:

  • You are a graduate student in McGill's Faculty of Engineering and your research is sustainability related 
  • You have an up-to-date CV
  • You have, or can obtain after your submission, a Letter of Support (email acceptable) from your Supervisor or Advisor to participate
  • You have a brief description of your work, either in writing or in video form, that answers these questions:
    • Why is your research important to the science or practice of engineering and design?
    • Why is your research important to the public?
    • Why is your research important to the professional community (industry, government, researchers, etc.)?



Timeline & Important Dates

  • Applications: Application webforms must be submitted by November 15th, 2017.
  • Selection: TISED will let you know if you were selected by our judges at the end of January 2018. Selection will be based both on your application as well as a 3MT-style presentation in front of our selection committee.
  • Training: All applicants are invited to participate in group training sessions in December and January. The group training will prepare you for both SEDTalks! and the 3MT competition. Following the group training you will be asked to present a 3MT-style presentation to the selection committee. If you are selected, you will go on to develop your SEDTalks! presentation during February and March with TISED's support and personalised training and practice rounds. If you are selected for SEDTalks!, you will still have the option of continuing in the 3MT competition if you wish.
  • Presentation: A prestigious seminar and networking event showcasing your work will be held on March 28th, 2018.



To apply, you must fill out the application webform here

Have your CV and a written description of your submission ready. Please note that you cannot save your application for later.



Past SEDTalks!

In 2016, three graduate students were selected to become "SEDTalks! ChangeMakers". These ChangeMakers received coaching from researchers and trainers so they could give a presentation of their great work in sustainable engineering and design. As part of the program, TISED hosted a networking cocktail, giving our ChangeMakers a chance to further their research and connections with TISED's academic and industry partners.