In Depth Profiles


Graduates Jonathan Jui (left) and Shariq Mobin (right) are pictured with PhD Program Director Michael Silver (center).

Q&A with the Graduates

We have a tradition of asking our graduating students to answer several questions about their PhD studies and future plans. The resulting Q&A articles are filled with reflections and words of advice.

Studying neural circuits of the retina in the dark, photographing people in the light, Berkeley Neuroscience PhD student Malak El-Quessny describes the passions that drive her both in and out of the lab.

Neuroscientist Portrait Project

The Neuroscientist Portrait Project takes a look at the lives of neuroscientists inside vs. outside of the lab with an emphasis on highlighting the stories of those who are traditionally underrepresented in the sciences. Created by Christine Liu (entering class of 2014) and sponsored by Berkeley Neuroscience.


Below is the complete list of all current Berkeley Neuroscience PhD Program students with some basic info about their research interests and background. To view past students, go to the Alumni page.

Entering Class of 2019

Adrian Alejandro, 2019

Giovanni Anthony, 2019

Karina Bistrong, 2019

Julian Dishart, 2019

Yanabah Jaques, 2019

Leana King, 2019

Emily Meschke, 2019

Nathan Munet, 2019

Lucia Rodriguez, 2019

Brooke Staveland, 2019

Kaeli Vandemark, 2019

Jacob Ziontz, 2019

Entering Class of 2018

Erin Aisenberg, 2018
Bateup Lab

Marisa Becerra, 2018
Jagust Lab

Julia Bleier, 2018
Isacoff Lab

Katie Cording, 2018
Bateup Lab

Matt Davis, 2018
Saijo Lab

Mark Gorenstein, 2018
Piantadosi Lab

Azure Grant, 2018
Kriegsfeld/Wilbrecht Lab

Madeline Klinger, 2018
Wilbrecht/Landry Lab

Sonali Mali, 2018
Bautista Lab

Brett Nelson, 2018
Bouchard Lab

Entering Class of 2017

Dariya Bakshinskaya, 2017
Isacoff Lab

Hayley Bounds, 2017
National Science Foundation Graduate Fellow
Adesnik Lab

Celia Ford, 2017
National Science Foundation Graduate Fellow
Wallis Lab

Lily Gong, 2017
Theunissen Lab

Molly LaPoint, 2017
Jagust Lab

Sylvia Madhow, 2017
Bouchard Lab

Ryan Schultz, 2017
Isacoff Lab

Christiane Voufo, 2017
Feller Lab

Ellen Zippi, 2017
National Science Foundation Graduate Fellow
Carmena Lab

Entering Class of 2016

Zuzanna Balewski, 2016
Wallis Lab

Bill Croughan, 2016
Foster Lab

Vael Gates, 2016
Griffiths Lab

Holly Gildea, 2016
National Science Foundation Graduate Fellow
Dillin Lab

Carson McNeil, 2016
Gallant Lab

Jacob Miller, 2016
D’Esposito Lab

Tobias Schmid, 2016
National Science Foundation Graduate Fellow
Yartsev Lab

Christine Tseng, 2016
Gallant Lab

Kevin Yu, 2016
National Science Foundation Graduate Fellow
Theunissen Lab

Entering Class of 2015

Jenna Adams, 2015
Jagust Lab
“Associations between tau spread and functional connectivity in cognitively normal older adults”

Krisha Aghi, 2015
Isacoff Lab
“Synaptic homeostasis and heterogeneity in vivo at the Drosophila larval neuromuscular junction”

Joseph Aman, 2015
National Science Foundation Graduate Fellow
Feldman Lab
“Rapid homeostatic plasticity in somatosensory cortex”

Ruairidh Battleday, 2015
Griffiths/Olshausen Labs
“Probabilistic models of cognition”

Althea Cavanaugh, entered 2017
National Science Foundation Graduate Fellow

Foster Lab

“Dynamics of Spatial Coding Along the Dorsoventral Axis of the Hippocampus”

Adam Eichenbaum, 2015
Berkeley Fellow
National Defense Science and Engineering Graduate Fellow
D’Esposito Lab
“Mechanisms of human learning and plasticity”

Malak El-Quessny, 2015
Chancellor’s Fellow
Feller Lab
“How visual experience shapes the interplay of dendritic form and circuit function in the developing retina”

Irene Grossrubatscher, 2015
Isacoff Lab
“Setting thresholds for behavior: How does internal state modulate prey capture?”

Arjun Mukerji, 2015
Silver Lab
“Parallel Visual Processing Streams in Thalamus and Cortex”

Sara Popham, 2015
Gallant Lab
“Investigating multimodal semantic representations in the human brain”

Maimon Rose, 2015
Yartsev Lab
“Tracking the development of neural dynamics in a vocal learning mammal”

Daniel Toker, 2015
National Science Foundation Graduate Fellow
D’Esposito Lab
“Sensory information transmission in oscillatory networks”

Amanda Tose, 2015
National Science Foundation Graduate Fellow
Lammel Lab
“Role of dorsal raphe input to the lateral hypothalamus in behavior with in vivo calcium imaging”

Entering Class of 2014

Jocelyn Breton, 2014
Fields/Lammel Labs
“The role of mesocortical projections in anxiety and alcohol consumption”

Franklin Caval-Holme, 2014
National Research Service Award Fellow
Feller Lab
“Dissecting a microcircuit that regulates the earliest light responses in the retina”

Ignas Cerniauskas, 2014
Boehringer Ingelheim Fonds Fellow
Lammel Lab
“Dissecting habenular circuits underlying depression-related behavior”

Colin Hoy, 2014
National Science Foundation Graduate Fellow
Knight Lab
“The role of surprise in error signals”

Christine Liu, 2014
National Science Foundation Graduate Fellow
Lammel Lab
“Elucidating the neural circuitry underlying nicotine-related behaviors”

Ben Shababo, 2014
Hertz Foundation Fellow
Adesnik Lab
“High-throughput, cellular resolution mapping of neural circuits”

Emilio Soto-Soto, 2014
National Science Foundation Graduate Fellow
Kriegsfeld Lab
“The Impact of Early Life Circadian Disruption on Neural Development and Cognitive Flexibility”

Greg Telian, 2014
Chancellor’s Fellow
Howard Hughes Medical Institute Gilliam Fellow
Adesnik Lab
“Sensorimotor cortical representations in vM1 and vS1 during active sensation”

Entering Class of 2013

Charles Garfinkle, 2013
Sommer Lab
“Identifiability in Sparse Dictionary Learning with Applications to Neuroscience”

Sean Mackesey, 2013
Sommer Lab
“The role of hippocampal field potentials in memory / Neuroinformatics infrastructure for electrophysiology”

Kata Slama, 2013
Knight Lab
“Neural mechanisms of top-down and bottom-up audio-visual attention in humans”

Entering Class Of 2012

Melissa Newton, 2012
Kayser Lab
“Neural representations of sensory evidence accumulation during abstract decisions”

Eric Weiss, 2012
Olshausen Lab
“3D visual perception in humans and the computational role of eye movements”