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Feil Family Brain & Mind Research Institute

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Neuroscience & BMRI Retreat

Each year in early March, the BMRI and Neuroscience Graduate Program combine and spend a weekend away from the city and their resepctive labs. The Retreat serves two main purposes: to update each other on current events, science, and achievements, and to bring everyone together in an informal setting for a friendly bonding experience. Students and faculty both enjoy the Retreat and it is an event we look forward to all year. Pictures of this year's Retreat can be found below.

This year, the program explored retreat at a new location called "The Shawnee Inn" nestled by the Appalachian Mountains bordering New Jersey & Pennsylvannia. Students and faculty woke up early on a wintery-filled bus ride to the Poconos. Upon arrival, students and faculty gathered for breakfast before a series of talks from both students and faculty. The program began with a student talk by 5th Year student Rachel Moda of the Conor Liston lab. Following, we had faculty talks by Dr. Adam Orr Ph.D.,, Assistant Professor of the BMRI, Dr. Geoffrey Pitt M.D., Ph.D., Director of the Cardiovascular Institute at WCM, and Dr. Josh Levitz, Ph.D., Assistant Professor of Pharmacology. A few coffee breaks later and after lunch, our talks concluded with a presentation by Georgia Frost, 5th Year student of the Yueming Li lab. 

These presentations were held in the Worthington Ballroom and were enjoyed by all. After the talks and presentations, students and faculty checked into their respective rooms and enjoyed a few hours of bonding and relaxation as some ventured on a guided hike through the Appalachian Mountains, visited the ShawneeCraft brewery, or went skiing/snow tubing to nearby Shawnee Mountain. 


                                                               Featured Speaker, Adam Orr, PhD

                                                  Featured Speaker, Dr. Geoffrey Pitt, M.D. Ph.D., 

Following the days presentations and afternoon activities, faculty and students gathered again for dinner and a happy hour in which the BMRI Paper of the Year was announced by Director of the BMRI, Costantino Iadecola, MD and was awareded to BMRI & Graduate Faculty member Conor Liston, MD/Ph.D. The evening's sessions ended with the 1st Year Graduate Student tradition of the Faculty Roast which was enjoyed by all.

Guided Hike with Neuroscience Graduate students

Retreat Dinner with Faculty & Students

Day 2 began with breakfast for faculty and students. The faculty breakfast was led by Dr. Costantino Iadecola and spoke about relevant updates on the BMRI. Shortly before lunch, students and faculty gathered for a poster session by 10 of our current Neuroscience Graduate Students. Faculty judged for "Best Poster". 1st Place was awareded to 3rd Year Graduate Student Thomas Li of the Yueming Li Lab and 2nd Place was awarded to 2nd Year Graduate Student, Vanessa Gutzeit of the Josh Levitz Lab. Following posters, attendees relocated to the Worthington Ballroom to resume the day's activities which included student presentations, blitz talks and updates on the Neuroscience Graduate Program led by Neuroscience Program Director, Giovanni Manfredi MD., Ph.D. The student presentations give faculty and student peers insight into current research being done. The talks are informative and encourage relationships and collaborations. Keeping up with tradition, each student who did not give a formal presentation gave a 3-minute "Blitz" talk to summarize their research projects. Students are encouraged to get creative and often write poems, songs, and develop animated displays of their lab work... and they do a great job! Activities and talks ended at 3:00 PM, shortly after faculty and students were well rested and prepared for the drive back to New York City - it was a great retreat enjoyed by all. 

Graduate Student Poster Session

Day 2 Talks, Worthington Ballroom

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