Are you a student pursuing a degree in forensic science? Are you passionate about sharing your research with future generations? Can you “hashtag this” quicker than you can pipette? Would you like to win free registration for ISHI 32 at Disney's Coronado Springs Resort in Orlando, FL? If so, we invite you to apply to become an ISHI Student Ambassador.

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As a student, you know that it’s important to network with those in the field who can further your research or assist you in obtaining a job after you graduate. But networking can be intimidating! As an ISHI Student Ambassador, you’ll make connections before you even arrive in Orlando. We will introduce you and your research on our website and social channels, introducing you to other attendees and jumpstarting the networking process.

Is there an expert in the field that you’d love to meet? Let us introduce you!

You’ll also have access to all networking functions, including the Welcome Event and Wednesday Night Event.

Allison Sherier
University of North Texas Health Science Center

"This is a great conference to attend to find Ph.D. and post-doctoral positions. The number of people from private, public, and research labs is fantastic for networking. If I had to pick only one meeting to attend each year, ISHI would definitely be my choice. There is just so much information and the people are so friendly to new people in the industry."


As an ISHI Student Ambassador, you’ll attend the largest conference focused entirely on DNA forensics. Learn about the latest techniques and technologies over two and a half days in the general sessions. You’ll also be granted complimentary registration to the pre and post-conference workshops, which will provide you with information that you can take back to the lab with you.

Is the stress of looking for a job after you graduate wearing on you? Each year, ISHI hosts a large number of vendors in our exhibit hall. You’ll have access to the exhibition area to chat with potential employers and being an ambassador will look great on your resumé!

Mirna Ghemrawi
Florida International University

“I highly recommend this conference to other students because I have no doubt that it will be beyond what is expected. Throughout the whole conference, I was on the edge of my seat listening to real caseworks.

I was honored to meet experts from the federal, local and international crime labs as well as researchers from other institutions. As students and new scientists in the field, it is very important to explore and build connections. Who knows? Maybe you meet your future boss.”


You’re never too young to make a difference! As an ISHI Student Ambassador, you’ll have a chance to share your passion for forensic DNA with your peers and future generations. Present your scientific poster to an in-person audience, including mentors you’ll be able to take selfies with later.

We’ll also record a video interview of your poster presentation to be shared on our social channels later, leading to further connections.

Rachel Kieser University of North Texas Health Science Center (formerly)

"If you are able to attend ISHI…GO! ISHI is the top conference to attend as a student or young investigator seeking a profession within the forensic genetics community as well as finding lifetime friends and collaborators.

Additionally, the position of ISHI Ambassador offers students funding to attend the conference where they can experience networking and exposure to research."


Interested in applying? Here’s what you need to do.

Draft a written essay answering the following questions using between 500 to 750 words total.

  • Forensic science can be a demanding career. The work may be exacting and tedious without a lot of recognition for a job well done. How did you decide that forensic science was the career for you? What aspirations do you have for your career after graduation and what is your scientific area of focus?

  • If you are selected to attend this year’s ISHI in Orlando, what do you hope to gain from your participation? What impact might participation in ISHI have on your personal and career growth?

  • If you are awarded free conference registration, you will be asked to present a scientific poster. Briefly describe what your scientific poster will be about.

Prepare a video recording between 30 seconds and 2 minutes long.

The video should explain why you would like to participate in this year’s ISHI in Orlando, FL. It can elaborate on any aspects of the conference that especially appeal to you (i.e., meeting a certain speaker, attending a specific workshop, participation in networking events, etc.). Don’t be afraid to let your personality show through. The committee is looking for candidates who can communicate their excitement for forensic science to fellow students.

Four winners will be selected by a group of reviewers from the ISHI Committee. Selected students will receive waived registration for ISHI 32 and any additional workshops held at ISHI (*Travel and hotel accommodations are the responsibility of the student.)

Fabiana Taglia
Florida International University

“First, prepare to be surprised and to meet great researchers from all around the world. My only advice is that for everyone working in forensic DNA, ISHI must be the meeting to attend. If you have any doubt, go, and you will realize once the conference starts.”

The students awarded free registration will be asked to provide the ISHI committee with the following materials to be shared on social media by ISHI show management:

  • A headshot or photo of the student.

  • A day in the life series to be shared on our Instagram stories.

  • A 500-word blog post before the ISHI symposium about what the student’s plans are for the meeting in Orlando.

  • Photos to be shared on the student's social media channels of you preparing for the conference.

  • A scientific poster presentation at ISHI (abstract due July 12, 2021).

  • Social media posts each day of the ISHI conference.

  • Onsite interviews at the symposium with the ISHI media team including (but not limited to) sharing of the student's scientific poster, and what they hope to learn/have learned while in attendance.

  • A handful of photos taken at the event.

  • A 500-word blog post after ISHI about what the student learned at the meeting.


  • This contest is open to students currently enrolled in a forensic science (or a similarly named program) at the undergraduate or graduate levels.

  • Applicant must have a public Facebook and Instagram page to allow for sharing of content.

  • All videos and essays must be submitted by the submission deadline of April 11, 2021.

  • All submissions must be original and not previously published elsewhere.

  • By submitting an entry and video clip to the contest, each entrant gives ISHI all rights, including copyright, to the entry and express permission to edit and publish the entry in all media listed above without limitation and without any other notice.