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My name is Isabel Marrero and I am a senior from Rocky Mount, North Carolina. I am pursuing a double-major in Biology and Psychology and also a minor in Neuroscience. I am currently interning at a neuroscience startup company called NeuroPlus. The company uses neurofeedback technology in conjunction with computer games to help children with ADHD learn to focus.

I discovered my passion for neuroscience when I started working in Dr. Todd Thiele’s behavioral neuroscience laboratory. For the past three years I have studied addictive behavior in animal models. I’ve focused on binge-like ethanol consumption in mice and concentrated on the medial prefrontal cortex. Although I have thoroughly enjoyed conducting research, I wanted to explore neuroscience outside of the laboratory setting. More specifically I wanted to explore the world of neuroscience biotech companies.

I initially became interested in the field of neuroscience biotech companies when I took a course called Silicon Revolution. Through the course I traveled to Silicon Valley and was exposed to tech and biotech companies. I was immediately captivated by how these companies combined science with business. During the trip I didn’t specifically see any companies that related to neuroscience, but I knew that if I could combine my interest in neuroscience with my newly discovered interest in biotech companies then that was what I wanted to do.

The Gil Internship has provided me with the opportunity to intern at a neuroscience biotech company. Jan Davis an economics professor at UNC put me in touch with Jake Stauch the CEO of NeuroPlus and with the help of the Gil Internship staff I was able to begin interning. It’s very exciting to be able to explore the field of neuroscience biotechnology and it’s also very exiting to be the first Gil intern to work at a startup company!

At NeuroPlus I am currently using my neuroscience background to help inform and keep customers up to date with neuroscience research. I focus on research centered on ADHD and make blog posts including this information. I have only been interning for a few weeks but I have already learned so much. I look forward to what the rest of the semester holds.

I am very appreciative of the Karen M. Gil Internship program as well as NeuroPlus for providing me with this amazing learning opportunity. I am graduating in May and this internship will provide me with incredible insight and experience for my plans post-graduation and as I begin my career.

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