A high school junior from a rigorous prep school, Matt's interest in neuroscience was sparked through the personal experience of having sustained six concussions over the course of his life. In dealing with his recovery, Matt was curious to learn more about the effects of traumatic brain injury on the mind.
Gain an in-depth knowledge of the intricacies of the brain to prepare for future academic and possibly professional work in neuroscience
Connect his studies to his personal experience by framing his research around the concussion-related illness, CTE (chronic traumatic encephalopathy)
Develop his data analysis and academic writing skills
Matt's mentor match was a leading expert and advocate on concussion prevention and research, the co-founder and CEO of the Concussion Legacy Foundation, and co-founder of the Boston University CTE Center. He'd gained his PhD in behavioral neuroscience after retiring from professional wrestling, hoping to understand how his concussions had impacted his brain chemistry.
Matt wrote up weekly summaries of reviews to better understand research design, analysis and interpretation. These summaries ultimately served as the building blocks for a CTE literature review.
Matt and his mentor reviewed 3-6 articles per week from primary literature to understand various aspects of CTE research, including epidemiology, etiology, diagnostic testing, clinical symptoms, pathology and risk factors.
For his final project, Matt completed an academic review paper of CTE science, which covered the history of the disease, animal models in CTE testing, modern CTE pathology, diagnosis and treatment.
I appreciate how, through Hugo, you can learn from someone who is an expert in the area you love the most.
It was especially meaningful to learn about the current work in CTE that my mentor was doing.
My mentor was outstanding. He was very flexible, asked me what I wanted to learn, and was very friendly
Accomplishing a personal goal
Gaining appreciation for the value of his own contributions
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