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Neuroscience & Behavior Program

The Neuroscience and Behavior Program at UMass Amherst is an interdepartmental graduate degree-granting academic unit that brings together faculty members from various departments to provide cutting-edge research training.


  • Sandra Petersen to receive Presidential Award for STEM mentoring

    NSB faculty member Sandra Petersen is set to receive the Presidential Award for Excellence in Science, Mathematics and Engineering.  She will receive her award at a White House ceremony later this year.  According to a press release, the White House presents the awards "to individuals and organizations to recognize the crucial role that mentoring plays in the academic and personal development of students studying scince and engineering--particularly those who belong to groups underrepresented in these fields."   Dr. Petersen is one of only 14 individuals and one organization to receive this award this year.  In addition to being honored at the White House, Dr. Petersen will also receive a $10,000 award from the National Science Foundation.  Congratulations to Dr. Petersen!

  • Adaeze Egwuatu awarded a Millenium Scholars Fellowship

    Adaeze Egwuatu, 1st year NSB student working in Jennifer McDermott's lab, was awarded a Millenium Scholars Fellowship through the Society for Research on Child Development (SRCD) for a recent conference meeting in Philadelphia.  The Frances Degen Horowitz Millennium Scholars Program "offers the selected scholars mentorship from advanced graduate students and early career scholars in the field who provide them guidance and support in their pursuit of educational and professional goals."  Congratulations to Adaeze!

  • Lauri Kurdziel receives the Outstanding Dissertation Award from the SRCD

    NSB alum Lauri Kurdziel has received the Outstanding Dissertation Award from the Society for Research on Child Development (SRCD).   Lauri is currently working as a postdoctoral researcher in NSB faculty member Rebecca Spencer's lab.  Congratulations to Lauri!

  • Janna Mantua recipient of Sleep Research Society Abstract Merit Based Award

    NSB student Janna Mantua (Spencer lab) is a recipient of a Sleep Research Society Abstract Merit Based Award.  This award is based on the scientific merit of the abstract that she submitted for presentation at SLEEP 2015, the 29th Annual Meeting of the Associated Professional Sleep Societies that will be held June 6-10, 2015 in Seattle, WA.   Janna received a Meritorius Award of $500.  Congratulations to Janna!

  • Amanda Cremone received travel award from CRF

    NSB student Amanda Cremone (Spencer lab) received a travel award from the University of Massachusetts Center for Research on Families (CRF).  CRF provided funding to Amanda to present Influence of a Mid-Day Nap on Response Inhibition in Preschool-Aged Children at the Society for Research in Child Development’s conference in Philadelphia.

  • Park paper published in Cerebral Cortex

    NSB faculty member Joonkoo Park's paper titled "Rapid and Direct Encoding of Numerosity in the Visual Stream" was recently published in Cerebral Cortex.

  • Ajay Kumar is runner up in Innovation Challenge

    Current Neuroscience & Behavior Program student Ajay Kumar (Bittman lab) was a runner up in UMass' Innovation Challenge MinutePitch competition.  Ajay (as a member of Team GeneRisk) proposed a software and web database combination that allows clinicians to deposit raw genetic data to obtain a risk score for Autism Spectrum or related disorders.  Congratulations to Ajay!

Colloquia and Events

Each colloquium starts at 4:00pm, preceded by refreshments from 3:30-4:00pm.

  • 2015


    Morrill Science Center II, Room 222

    Brian Trainor

    Associate Professor of Psychology, University of California Davis

    Luke Remage-Healey

  • 2015

    Cognitive and socioemotional development after postnatal anesthetic exposure

    Morrill Science Center II, Room 222

    Mark Baxter

    Professor, Neuroscience, Mt. Sinai School of Medicine

    Agnès Lacreuse and Melinda Novak

  • 2015

    Brain circuit mechanisms for human self-control failure

    Morrill Science Center II, Room 222

    Joshua Buckholtz

    Assistant Professor of Psychology, Harvard University

    Jerrold Meyer & David Moorman

  • 2015

    The roles of glial cells in modulating neural networks and diverse behaviors

    Morrill Science Center II, Room 222

    Philip Haydon

    Professor and Chair, Neuroscience, Tufts University

    Gerald Downes

  • 2015


    Morrill Science Center II, Room 222

    Peggy Mason

    Professor, Department of Neurobiology, The University of Chicago

    Joseph Bergan

  • 2015


    Morrill Science Center II, Room 222

    Morgan Barense

    Assistant Professor, Department of Psychology, University of Toronto

    Rosie Cowell