8th Annual oSTEM Conference - Request for Proposals

Out in Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics is now accepting program proposals for the 8th Annual oSTEM Conference.

We welcome proposals from all members of the LGBTQA+ and/or STEM community - especially proposals which explore intersections of identities and highlight marginalized perspectives. We encourage our students, sponsors, professionals, and all interested in furthering our mission to submit a proposal for our upcoming Conference this November in Houston.

Benefits of Presenting

  • 50% discounted registration for up to two (2) presenters per program
  • Direct interaction with stellar LGBTQA+ STEM students and professionals
  • Opportunity to influence future LGBTQA+ STEM leaders
  • Visibility for your organization or cause

Submission Milestone

  • April 12: RFP Released
  • June 15 June 29:  Deadline for Submissions
  • Aug 11:  Acceptance Notifications

Program Topics

oSTEM is dedicated to providing programming that is directed at both LGBTQA+ students and professionals in a variety of STEM fields. Programs that highlight the following have been requested by conference attendees:

  • Sharing Technical Experiences and Expertise
    • data science, applied mathematics, industry and academic research, environmental sciences
  • Chapter Development and Student Leadership
    • Engaging sponsors, campus programming, chapter development,
  • Intersectional Identities
    • issues impacting LGBTQA+ people who also identify as racial/ethnic minorities, gender minorities (including trans and non-binary communities), people with disabilities, etc.
  • Career and Professional Development
    • career pivots, branding yourself, academic careers, business skills
  • LGBTQA Health and Wellness
    • HIV/AIDS, queer health topics, LGBTQA+ and healthy mental living
  • Professional and Advisor Enrichment
    • Employee Resource Group best practices, roles and responsibilities of advisors, LGBTQA+ mentorship
  • Other Various Topics
    • Advocacy, faith & reason, and additional topics that address the needs of the community

Presentation Format

When designing your proposal, please keep the following in mind:

  • ~60 minutes sessions (inclusive of Q&A)
  • Interactive activity/presentation or panel discussion
  • Program assessment will not be provided by oSTEM

Successful Program Characteristics

Successful programs will:

  • Actively engage with the audience in some way
  • Honor oSTEM's values and commitment to diversity and inclusion
  • Support inclusion of gender and/or racial/ethnic minorities within the LGBTQA+ and/or STEM communities
  • Empower underrepresented communities to thrive despite hardships
  • Provide valuable takeaways to attendees
  • Present unique topics or present topics in a unique perspective
  • Provide in-depth submissions that show intention and organization of content

Successful programs will NOT:

  • Directly highlight a company or organization for recruiting purposes
  • Propagate or encourage stereotypical representations of gender, sexuality, and/or racial/ethnic communities

Program Evaluation Criteria

All programs will be reviewed based on the follow characterisitcs. Provided are also suggestions on how to achieve favorable marks in these categories:

Programs will be evaluated on their ability to...

  • Actively engage with the audience to encourage attendance
  • Honor oSTEM's values and commitment to diversity and inclusion
  • Present unique topics or present topics in a unique perspective
  • Provide valuable takeaways to attendees
  • Provide in-depth submissions that show intention and organization of content

Some methods to achieve this are...

  • Create a dialogue between presenter and audience around the content
  • Use appropriate pronouns, terminology, and avoid political statements
  • Bring your creativity! Current event topics, content that has not been provided in past conferences, and unique proposals always have a way of standing out
  • Offer knowledge, experience, or growth to those who attend by providing handouts, in-person experiences, or network connections
  • Provide a detailed, articulate description within the word count


Proposal Components

Prior to submitting your proposal, please ensure you have provided the following information:

  • Session title (10 word max)
  • Summary of the session for program book (150 word max)
  • What is the value of this workshop to the LGBTQA STEM community? (300 word max)
  • How will the proposed program engage the audience? Be specific. (300 word max)
  • Specific workshop objectives OR specific panel topics (300 word max)
  • Is this session intended for a specific community only? If so, specify.
  • Describe any audio/visual (A/V) equipment needed. 
  • Presenter names/titles/emails/demographic info
  • Presenter bios

For an editable version of the submission form to gather your thoughts and collaborate with other presenters, download a Word version here. An online submission will still be required..

Please note: Document and email submissions will NOT be accepted.

Additional Information

Please email our Conference Programming Committee at conference-programming@ostem.org with any questions, including concerns about the accessibility of this document.