Don Julien Dissertation Defense Flyer

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UCLA-NSIDP Alumna, Mary Kay Lobo who received her PhD in Spring 2007 and was mentored by Prof. William Yang has received the prestigious National Institute of Mental Health 2017 Presidential Early Career Award for Scientists and Engineers (PECASE). Mary Kay Lobo is currently an Assistant Professor in Anatomy & Neurobiology at the University of Maryland, School of Medicine. For more information, read online at NIMH.


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NSIDP fourth-year students Cynthia He and David DiTullio were recently featured in the Society for Neuroscience’s online publication, NEURONLINE, for their work on the student-led Neuroscientific Methods seminar.  

First organized by NSIDP students Tessa Harrison and Chris Ching in 2013, this seminar has since been facilitated by second-year students each year under the mentorship of Dr. Anne Andrews. Facilitators develop the curriculum and methods to evaluate students and the efficacy of the seminar itself. Most NSIDP students attend the SfN conference to present their lab research, but numerous students have also presented on innovations in neuroscience education and outreach. Both Cynthia and David are interested in pursuing careers that involve teaching as a major component, so the NSIDP's commitment to supporting academic experiences outside the laboratory has helped them and others develop a well-rounded skill set. Read the full article at SfN: NEURONLINE.



Knowing Neurons initiative

NSIDP outreach and education initiative, Knowing Neurons, wins SfN Next Generation Award

The NSIDP congratulates Knowing Neurons for receiving the 2016 Society for Neuroscience Next Generation Award!  This award recognizes SfN chapter members who have made outstanding contributions to public communication, outreach, and education about neuroscience.  Knowing Neurons is a neuroscience education and outreach website that was created by graduate students at the University of California, Los Angeles and the University of Southern California.  The young scientists of Knowing Neurons, which include NSIDP graduate students Kate Fehlhaber, Joel Frohlich, and Jenn Tribble, explain complicated ideas about the brain clearly and accurately using powerful images, infographics, and animations to enhance written content.  With an extensive social media presence, Knowing Neurons has become an important science communication outlet and resource for both students and teachers.

Join us in celebrating their achievement at SfN! Meet the team at their dynamic poster to find out how you can get involved in this award-winning endeavor! 

For more information, please visit


Best Program for Neuroscience and Behavior

U.S. News & World Reports ranks UCLA's NSIDP as #7 in Best Global Universities for Neuroscience and Behavior.


Capital Hill Day

NSIDP Students Attend SfN’s Capitol Hill Day

This year, two NSIDP students, Andrew Thompson and Jennifer Tribble, joined fellow Society for Neuroscience members at SfN’s Capitol Hill Day. During Hill Day, they had the opportunity to speak to representatives and their staff to advocate for sustained funding to support biomedical research. Specifically, this year Andrew and Jennifer were requesting our representatives to support the increases in NIH and NSF funding, to at least $34.5 billion and $8 billion, respectively.

Not only was it thrilling to spend a day advocating on Capitol Hill, but it was also a valuable lesson in science communication. We practiced and critiqued our elevator pitches for a non-academic audience, and had a chance to discuss our research to non-experts. For anyone interested in science communication or science policy, we would highly recommend this experience!


Brain Awareness Week

UCLA Celebrates Brain Awareness Week

UCLA hosts an annual Brain Awareness Week in recognition of the global campaign to increase public awareness of neuroscience and the progress of brain research. The event is organized by a current NSIDP graduate student, who coordinates Project Brainstorm, an outreach group within the Brain Research Institute that makes weekly visits to low-income, low-opportunity K-12 schools all over Los Angeles to teach students about neuroscience. 

This year for Brain Awareness Week, 250 5th to 12th graders visited UCLA, where they enjoyed interactive activities hosted by UCLA neuroscience undergraduate and graduate students! Participants explored fundamental neuroscience concepts, such as the different lobes of the brain, synaptic transmission and brain injury, observed sheep brain dissections to learn about parts of the brain as well as brain evolution, and learned popular neuroscience topics, such as the phantom limb syndrome, reflexes versus reaction times, the stroop effect and more! Students also visited different UCLA neuroscience laboratories, interacted with current scientists, and learned about the research process and the principles of various areas of ongoing research.

Brain Awareness Week 2016 could not have been possible without the efforts of previous coordinators, graduate students from neuroscience and other departments, undergraduates from Project Brainstorm, and members from Psych in Action, Interaxon and Project Synapse. The event has received much positive feedback from both the evaluations students filled out at the end of each day as well as verbal comments. Schools have even begun inquiring about participating in next year’s Brain Awareness Week! 

For more information: 


UCLA is the home of an outstanding and vibrant neuroscience community, including laboratories in diverse departments in the David Geffen School of Medicine, the College and the Samueli School of Engineering. UCLA offers graduate training in Neuroscience through the Interdepartmental PhD Program for Neuroscience (NS-IDP). The program includes about 150 laboratories in diverse areas spanning the field from molecular analysis to genetics and behavior. Students in the program learn modern problem solving skills and use state of the art approaches to explore a deeper understanding of how the brain processes information. The program, which is part of the larger Bioscience Graduate Program at UCLA typically admits 10-15 students per year that have a genuine interest in the brain and in contributing to solving some of its mysteries.


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