Research and Innovation Week 2023

Date and Location

Oct. 17, 2023

9:00 am to 5:00 pm
Visual Arts Complex (VAC) Plaza

Rain Location: CU Art Museum, Education Room

Developed and hosted in Boulder since 2018, UROP's Sidewalk Symposium invites undergraduates to create and share their research and creative presentations with chalk on campus walkways—all in collaboration with a professional artist.

Call for Student Presenters

UROP welcomes undergraduates at any stage of their project timeline to participate in this year's Sidewalk Symposium by creating colorful visual presentations of their projects using nothing but chalk.  Applications to participate will be reviewed for compliance with university policy and suitability for the event.

Sign-Up Now

Get creative and consider including
  • questions your project seeks to answer or raise
  • thought-provoking or troubling facts, statistics, etc.
  • interesting or surprising outcomes, conclusions, etc.
  • diagrams of methods, relevant processes, etc.
  • illustrations of biological or chemical structures
  • drawings of mechanical components and designs
  • titles of creative or performance pieces
  • graphs, charts or tables of significant data
  • mathematical formulas, relevant theorems, etc.


  • CU Boulder undergraduates engaged in campus research and creative projects are encouraged to participate.
  • Participants must be working (or completed work) under the supervision of a CU Boulder faculty or staff mentor.
  • UROP funding is not required to participate.
  • Students may participate as a group and should submit the application form once (with all students named).

Time Commitment

Event staff will be on-hand from 9:00 am to 5:00 pm, and participants may choose to create and share their chalk art any time throughout the event.  UROP encourages participants to

  • Plan ahead by sketching your ideas on paper.
  • Start early and allow time to talk with visitors.
  • Consider breaking up your time to work around class schedules.
  • Recruit friends and mentors to help.
  • Keep your design simple if you have limited time.

Chalking Policy

Chalking is NOT allowed:
  • On vertical surfaces (e.g. walls)
  • Under overhangs (e.g. covered walkways)
  • On building exteriors (e.g.  walls, doors, etc.)
  • Within 10 feet of any building entrance or doorway
  • On benches or other surfaces intended for seating
  • Check the campus policy for details.

Participants are responsible for abiding by the campus chalking policy, which restricts chalking to concrete or asphalt exterior sidewalks that are exposed to natural elements. You may bring your own chalk, but UROP will provide plenty of materials for you.

Chalking must be done by using water-soluble stick-chalk that fades away with the natural elements within a few days. Use of other types of chalk, including but not limited to, spray chalk, chalk paint, chalk markers, and other forms of liquid or powered chalk is not permitted. 

Rain or Inclement Weather

In the event of rain or inclement weather, activities be relocated to the “rain location” noted here.  Participants will be provided with sheets of “felt roof underlayment,” which simulates the texture of pavement. 

Artist Collaborator

Students will be joined by expert chalk artist Kyle Banister, who willl provide on-site assistance throughout the event.  Kyle makes his living as a chalk art artist and currently serves on the Artists Committee for the Denver Chalk Art Festival.  His work for the Colorado Rockies, Denver Broncos and Denver Center for the Performing Arts has been featured in Denver for years.