I graduated from Drew University (Madison, NJ) with a BA and Honors in neuroscience in May 2008. A few months later, I came to UNC as a member of the first BBSP class and joined the Neurobiology Curriculum in 2009. I strongly support basic research and improving science communication with the general public, and I would like to act at the interface between scientists and non-scientists in the future. In my spare time, I enjoy painting, kayaking, trail running, and cooking.
I am a senior member of Dr. Mohanish Deshmukh's lab in the UNC Neuroscience Center. My research focuses on how a neuron can degenerate its axon without putting the rest of itself at risk. Such axon pruning is required to establish proper neuronal circuitry during development and may be aberrantly activated in various neurodegenerative settings. Using microfluidic technology to separate the axon and soma of sympathetic neurons, I have discovered several key points of overlap and distinction between the pathways that degenerate axons during pruning versus whole-cell death (apoptosis).
2013- UNC Graduate School Impact Award winner
2011 - 2013- BBSP FYG Peer Mentor and Social Coordinator
2012- Federation of European Neurosciences (FENS) Travel Award winner
2011- Media Highlight at SfN
2011- PMRD faculty-selected speaker
2011- NRSA recipient (NINDS)
2010-2012- Student Representation Committee for the curriculum
2009- Neuroscience Training Grant recipient
2008–2010 PMRD student planning committee; co-chair (2010)