Welcome to PiFORUM!

Piscopia Initiative – Female and Other Researchers United in Mathematics
7th-11th of September 2020 – completely online

From the 7th to the 11th of September we will be hosting a virtual conference for women and non-binary undergraduate and Masters students as part of our initiative to tackle the participation crisis in mathematical research. We focus on Scotland and the rest of the UK and particularly encourage women/non-binary undergraduate or Master students to apply. We are looking forward to receiving your applications!

Apply now for PiFORUM!
Deadline: 12th of August

Did you enjoy (some of) your maths courses? Thinking about a PhD, but are not that sure? What is it like as a woman in mathematics research?
If these are some of the questions on your mind, don’t worry, we’ve got you covered 🙂 Apply to the PiFORUM to find out what a PhD entails and kick start your application with our bootcamp, featuring a CV clinic and individual mock interviews! The conference will be held entirely online (see schedule below) and is free of charge, plus every participant will receive a free goody bag in advance, containing supplementary materials for the workshops and a few lovely things to get you through the week!

Want to meet other women and non-binary students who love maths and get some insight on PhD life?
Use this link to apply to PiFORUM by the 12th of August: https://forms.gle/XEo7aqQpAdjsXBoq8
Successful participants will be informed by the 13th of August.
If you have any questions, check out our Q&A below or contact us directly using the details on the front page.

The Piscopia Fund
If there are circumstances that could potentially prohibit you from taking part in the conference (for example, but not limited to, caring responsibilities), we have initiated the Piscopia Fund to support you. When applying, please briefly describe what we can help with and we will work with you to make your participation possible! Stating this will not affect how we process your application in any way.

Conference Schedule (all times in BST – UK time)

Monday, 07/09 : Intro – What different options are out there? (6.45pm-8.45pm)
Tuesday, 08/09: Application Process & Interview Prep – Let’s get you interview-ready! (6.45pm-8.45pm)
Wednesday, 09/09: CV Clinic & Personal Statement – Hands-on workshop to improve your CV and work on your personal statement (6.45pm-8.45pm)
Thursday, 10/09: Facets of Maths – Taster sessions held by leading female researchers (6.45pm-8.45pm)
Friday, 11/09: Individual Mock Interviews – optional (30min scheduled individually throughout the day)

Q&A

Who should apply to PiFORUM?
We are aiming to encourage participation from women and non-binary students in STEM research. So if you identify as one of these and are thinking about a PhD in maths or a related subject, we are looking forward to receiving your application. We are giving priority to students studying/looking to study in Scotland and the rest of the UK, but we encouraging applications from anywhere and anyone! Note that the content will be focused on the UK PhD system.

I am not sure if I want to do a PhD. Should I nevertheless apply?
Yes, 100%! PiFORUM is designed to inform you about the PhD option and help you along the way!

How much does it cost to take part?
Thanks to our sponsors, it is completely free to attend PiFORUM – you will even receive a free goody bag delivered to your home! This will contain supplementary materials for the workshops and a few lovely things to get you through the week.

I am not sure if I can attend all sessions. What should I do?
As much as we would love to have you participate in every session, we know that you might already have other plans or responsibilities. Check out the Piscopia Fund to see if we can assist you in your participation. To be a full participant (receive the goody bag and a certificate of participation at the end), you have to attend at least three of the four sessions (Mon-Thu), but we highly encourage to join all of them.

Will the PiFORUM get me a PhD position?
We are certainly not a fast track to a PhD position, as we only offer advice and guidance. It is up to you to then apply (just like everyone else) to a PhD opening, if you decide to do so. While we provide information for PhD applications, you then subsequently apply for PhD positions, using the content from PiFORUM at your own discretion.

Who is organising PiFORUM?
The conference is hosted by the Piscopia Initiative, a recently founded initiative set out to encourage women and non-binary students to apply to PhDs to lastingly increase diversity, especially at Scottish and other UK universities. The initiative is run by three students from the University of Edinburgh in their spare time. We are passionate about opening up participation in mathematical research to more and more people, and this conference is one step in the right direction.

What is the Piscopia Fund?
If there are circumstances that could potentially prohibit you from taking part in the conference (for example, but not limited to, caring responsibilities), we have initiated the Piscopia Fund to support you. When applying, please briefly describe what we can help with and we will work with you to make your participation possible! Stating this will not affect how we process your application in any way.

I have a disability that could affect my participation. What should I do?
Please apply! If there are any steps we can take to make your participation easier, please let us know in the comment section of the application. Alternatively you can contact us via email. Stating this will not affect how we process your application in any way.

I have a question that was not answered here. Who shall I contact?
Just drop any of the three co-founders listed on the front page an email and we will be happy to get back to you!