News & Media

WiSys changes name of summer symposium to ‘SPARK’

MADISON—WiSys’ signature summer research and innovation symposium will have a new name when it convenes next in Madison on July 27-28, 2020.

The annual event, which features the research and entrepreneurial work of UW System faculty, staff and students, will be known as the WiSys SPARK Symposium.

“Since the first WiSys symposium more than a decade ago, our event and our organization has changed significantly,” said WiSys President Arjun Sanga. “The new name captures the spirit of what WiSys is trying to accomplish, namely sparking ideas, collaboration and entrepreneurship.”

The gathering had been known as the Wisconsin Science & Technology Symposium, or WSTS. It began as a venue for faculty to share their research results. Today, the symposium has a greater focus on student engagement, entrepreneurial innovation and research across all disciplines—not just science and technology.

“WiSys’ reach has grown in recent years and we want to ensure that students, entrepreneurs, and researchers from all disciplines, including the social sciences and humanities, understand this event is for them,” said Sanga. “They’re all invited to help us spark ideas and collaborations.”

SPARK will continue to feature dynamic speakers, highlighted networking opportunities, and student-focused activities, including a poster competition and innovation showcase.

This year’s event will also serve as a birthday party for WiSys because the organization will mark its 20th anniversary in 2020.

WiSys is a nonprofit organization that works with faculty, staff, students and alumni of the UW System to facilitate cutting-edge research programs, develop and commercialize discoveries and foster a spirit of innovative and entrepreneurial thinking across the state.