I am originally from Kansas City, Missouri (USA) and went to undergrad at The College of Wooster (very small uni in Ohio). I majored in Cognitive and Behavioral Neuroscience and worked in several neuroscience labs. I did a small research project on body image and affective responses measured via EEGs. I also researched sex differences in the effect of acute, restraint stress on working memory in Sprague Dawley rats (for a small project).

For my undergrad thesis, I researched cognition in Type 1 Diabetes versus non-diabetics in terms of  inhibition, task switching, and psychomotor efficiency. I decided on this research topic because I’ve been a Type 1 Diabetic for 15 years and I wanted to know how this disease impacts (or could impact) my cognition. Interestingly, I found that Type 1 Diabetics had significantly slower psychomotor speed across all tasks even though their task switching and inhibition skills were normal. I think it would be interesting to follow up on this research…maybe an idea for my Master’s thesis?

How did I end up at VuW?

I studied on exchange here trimester 2 of 2016 and had a wonderful experience. I decided after graduating undergrad last May, to come back to VuW for postgrad studies. I am doing part 1 of the CBNS Master’s program and would love to find a job in NZ after finishing my degree.

For our first year of the CBNS program, we complete two research projects in a different lab each trimester. 

Trimester 1: I was a part of the Human Learning Lab with Anne and Maree. My research project was on experiential delay discounting and time perception. I did not know anything about this topic prior to last trimester, but I learned a lot of valuable skills about human behaviour analysis. I am currently preparing my 2-min talk for the poster session about our research projects on Friday.

Trimester 2: I will be working on Ultrasonic Vocalizations mainly using DeepSqueak. I am not familiar with USVs or DeepSqueak but Bart and Jiun have provided me with articles to get started on understanding the material. My goal is to read the articles this week.

I look forward to working in this lab and learning about USVs in rats