In early November, BSI sponsored five undergraduate students from CU Boulder to travel to Society for Neuroscience (SfN) 2018. The scientific conference, held in San Diego, California, brought together researchers from around the world to share their scientific insights and promote collaboration.
“The diversity in topics was astonishing,” said senior neuroscience and molecular, cellular and developmental biology (MCDB) major Sara Ahmad, who attended the conference for the first time. “Any possible question on the brain was addressed with great depth.”
The BSI students who attended SfN all presented posters detailing their research work. Students answered questions of researchers who stopped at their posters.
“Many people that I talked to were studying similar topics and had valuable input on future directions for my research,” said Kylia Ahuna, a senior majoring in neuroscience.
Sara agreed. “I got a lot of great feedback on the work that will be taken into consideration for the project’s future,” she said.
Senior Anouk Schrama, a triple major in biochemistry, neuroscience, and MCDB, appreciated the opportunity to present to other researchers from around the world. “It was an extremely valuable experience,” said Anouk. “It gave me an opportunity to see a side of the science research world that I was not exposed to [and] allowed me to gain confidence in my ability to understand and explain my project.”
In addition to presenting, undergraduates attended other sessions focused on research, networking, and possibilities in their futures.
“The grad school fair was great because I am currently applying,” said senior neuroscience and psychology major Eric Mitten. “I got some face time with the schools I am applying to.”
Students who aren’t in the process of applying to graduate schools still appreciated the chance to connect with the huge variety of researchers attending the conference.
“You have so many opportunities to scope out research that you may be interested in in graduate school and network with other students and P.I.s from different schools,” said Kylia.
Overall, student attendees enjoyed the conference. Sara summed it up: “It was my favorite experience with research.”
Students who are conducting research at CU and affiliated with BSI can apply for travel funds to attend scientific conferences once per year. Students must be presenting original research work at the conference to be eligible to apply for funding.
For more information about the travel funding, visit the travel grants page on the BSI website.