In-Person Undergraduate Scholars Forum to Take Place for First Time Since Before COVID-19


Fulton, MO ‒ April 19, 2022: Westminster College’s 15th annual Undergraduate Scholars Forum will take place in person for the first time since 2019 at 9 a.m. on Thursday, April 21, 2022, in Coulter Science Center. The public is cordially invited to attend the event, which runs in concurrent sessions throughout the day.

The Undergraduate Scholars Forum begins with a keynote address by Rebecca Stubbs, PhD, Class of 2008, who will be livestreamed from the University of Zurich in Switzerland. The livestream can be accessed on Westminster’s YouTube page and social media accounts.

Stubbs’ presentation is a 15-year celebration of the event: Her family helped found the Forum.

She will discuss current research in the field of evolutionary biology and how her career developed since earning a degree in Environmental Science with a minor in Chemistry from Westminster.

“As an undergraduate at Westminster, I knew that I enjoyed science classes and was interested in being a scientist, but I was not sure how to turn that into a career,” Stubbs explains. “By exploring different options during my time at Westminster, and then also through graduate programs, I was able to discover my passions for plant biology, genetics, and bioinformatics.”

She currently is a post-doctoral fellow in the Department of Systematic and Evolutionary Botany at the University of Zurich.

Stubbs earned her PhD in Biology in 2018 from the University of Florida in Gainesville after earning a master’s degree in Biology with a concentration in Ecology and Systematic Biology from San Francisco State University in 2012.

The Undergraduate Scholars Forum promotes undergraduate research and other scholarly work ― integral components of a Westminster College education. Classes are paused for the day while more than 100 students from 16 academic programs present original research through multimedia projects, papers, and posters.

Dr. Mary Majerus, Forum co-director and director of the Center for Teaching and Learning, says the Undergraduate Scholars Forum is one of Westminster’s signature events, allowing students to learn from one another across disciplines.

“It is a true pleasure to welcome back Rebecca Stubbs this year as keynote speaker,” Majerus adds. “I believe the students will relate well to her story and be inspired by what is possible in their own futures.”

Along with Beth (Howard) MacLellan, Class of 2000, the Undergraduate Scholars Forum is generously funded by an endowment established by the Stubbs family, which includes a number of Westminster graduates: David Stubbs, Class of 1968; Thad Stubbs, Class of 1999; Courtney (Stubbs) Swan, Class of 2001; and Zach Stubbs, Class of 2007; as well as Rebecca Stubbs, Class of 2008.

ABOUT WESTMINSTER COLLEGE: Founded in 1851 and home of Winston Churchill’s “Iron Curtain” speech, Westminster College in Fulton, MO, is ranked prestigiously by U.S. News & World Report as the only National Liberal Arts College in Missouri. The institution is in the top 16 percent for graduate earnings and boasts a 98 percent placement rate. Westminster also is a Forbes Best Value College. Westminster focuses on educating and inspiring students to become the world leaders of tomorrow. To find out more about Westminster, please visit the College’s website.

FOR MORE INFORMATION: Contact Sarah Backer at 573-220-9038 or


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Sarah Rummel Backer

Sarah Rummel Backer is the Director of Media Relations and Senior Writer at Westminster College in Fulton, Missouri. A proud Westminster graduate, Sarah has more than 20 years of experience in marketing and strategic communications in the areas of higher education, medicine, agriculture, and the private business sector.