Brain Week Rhode Island
The Story Collider is delighted to visit Providence for the first time, with five true, personal stories about brains! This event is held in conjunction with Brain Week Rhode Island. Tickets are on sale now!
Rosa Lafer-Sousa received a B.A in Neuroscience from Wellesley College and is currently a PhD candidate in Brain and Cognitive Sciences at MIT. Her research aims to shed light on the neural architecture of the visual system and establish links between brain activity and perception, with a focus on Color as a model system. Using functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI), she and her colleagues Dr. Bevil Conway and Dr. Nancy Kanwisher have shed light on the functional organization of high-level visual cortex in human and non-human primates, providing evidence for fundamental organizing principles in the brain and homology across species. In parallel, she has been using behavioral psychophysics to uncover novel findings about #TheDress and color perception. She is a National Science Foundation Graduate Research Fellow, a Henry E. Singleton (1940) Fellow, a member of Sigma Xi Scientific Honor Society, and winner of Wellesley College’s Klein Prize in Neuroscience (2009).
Chris Bardt is a professor of architecture at the Rhode Island School of Design, and co founder (with Kyna Leski) of 3six0 Architecture an inventive, highly awarded Providence based design practice. In his teaching and work Chris explores the way material acts not only as a medium for thought but as a profound trigger of the imagination. He has just completed a book manuscript on the subject, titled “Matter and Mind”. Besides experimenting with materials, Chris works with the sun’s geometry, shadows and time using digital models and large scale installations. When not busy in the studio he can be found rowing on the Seekonk River with the first and oldest rowing organization in the country, The Narragansett Boat Club.
PeaceLove Co-founder Jeff Sparr is a man on an audacious mission – a mission to make mental illness cool. Not cool to have, but cool to support. A family man, mental health advocate, teacher and self-taught artist, Jeff is above all a survivor, battling Obsessive Compulsive Disorder (OCD) much of his life. Inspired by a simple, powerful image signifying “peace of mind and love for yourself,” Sparr set out to build the first symbol for mental health and bring expressive arts to millions of people to help them create peace of mind.
Kia Salehi is a recent graduate of Wellesley College, where she majored in neuroscience and mathematics. For two years after graduation she worked as the lab manager for a neuroscience lab at Brown University in Providence, RI. For the past six months she has been traveling and working on organic farms in New Zealand with her girlfriend. She recently returned to the US and is pausing in Providence to reunite with her cats and friends before moving to San Francisco to work in the tech industry.
Amanda Marie Duffy is a graduate student at Brown University pursuing her Ph.D. in Neuroscience. Her research is focused on understanding mechanisms that underlie ALS disease progression and therapeutic intervention with the use of molecular, cellular, and behavioral techniques. In 2015, Amanda was named a fellow in the Society for Neuroscience’s Neuroscience Scholars Program. In 2014, Amanda was elected as Graduate Student Representative where she managed recruitment and served as a member of the admissions committee. Prior to graduate school, Amanda worked as a research assistant at Massachusetts General Hospital in the Division of Neurotherapeutics. Amanda graduated from Brown University with a Sc.B. in Neuroscience in 2009.