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6-week course

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Neuroscience of Emotions for Middle School students

This Pod will meet once per week for 6 weeks, starting on July 7, 2024 at 5:30pm EDT/2:30pm PDT, with the last session being Sunday August 11, 2024.

By enrolling you confirm this time works for you.

Date and time

Sunday, 5:30pm EDT/2:30pm PDT

Group size

3-6 students


We will wrap up our course with final presentations where students will present in teams their emotion of choice and its neurobiological underpinnings. Students will explore how specific neurotransmitter systems, brain areas, and genetics play a role in shaping that emotion and how dysregulation of that emotion can impact mental health.



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PhD in Neuroscience

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Neuroscience of Emotions for Middle School students

We all experience emotions on a daily basis, have you ever wondered how they come about? In this pod, we’ll explore the key aspects of how the brain generates and shapes emotions and how this is related to key concepts in mental health. In the process, we will cover the fundamentals of neuroscience and move on to the neurotransmitter systems, neural circuits, and genetics involved in generating and shaping emotions. We will then move on to discuss conditions where emotional regulation is disrupted, including mental health conditions anxiety and depression, and how they are currently treated.



PhD in Neuroscience

I am a PhD-trained Biomedical Researcher and AI specialist who currently works at the intersection of research, business, and the legal profession. I began my journey at Rutgers, The State University in New Brunswick, New Jersey studying Cell Biology and Neuroscience. Here, I gained experience in several areas of biomedical research that focused on the development of new medicines and technologies to treat conditions such as Alzheimer's disease, inflammation, and cancer. I was a co-inventor on a patent application that was aimed to make drug discovery more efficient. Additionally, I recently completed a public education internship at the Society for Neuroscience where I was involved in an array of science outreach, writing, and advocacy activities. Following my BA, I served as a research scientist at Stanford University where I studied the cells that are targetted in multiple sclerosis. I then completed my PhD in Neuroscience at UNC-Chapel Hill. My thesis combined engineering, neuroscience, and machine learning. This interdisciplinary approach aimed to develop technologies to evaluate pain in animals to better inform the development of new, non-addictive pain medications. I now work on technologies such as CRISPR, gene editing, and other cutting-edge biomedical techniques as they pertain to new commercial applications. Outside of research and mentoring, I am very passionate about travel and food. I recently completed a trip to South America where I did a multi-day trek in Patagonia.

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Neuroscience of Emotions for Middle School students

Week by week curriculum

Week 1

Introduction to Neuroscience: We will cover the foundations of neuroscience needed for our subsequent lectures. We will discuss the different components of the nervous system, their building blocks, and how they integrate to carry out the varied functions of the nervous system.

Week 2

Neurotransmitter systems involved in emotional processing: We will cover the various neurotransmitter systems involved in emotional processing.

Week 3

Neural circuits involved in emotions: We will cover specific brain circuits involved in generating and processing emotions. By examining the circuits, we will gain a deeper appreciation for how these circuits function under normal and pathological conditions.

Week 4

Genetics of emotions: We will cover genetic factors implicated in individual differences in emotion processing, gaining a deeper appreciation for nature vs. nurture in emotional regulation. In this section, we will cover mutations/variations in specific genes that are associated with differences in emotion generation and processing.

Week 5

Clinical cases and treatment for emotional/affective disorders: Now that we have an understanding of how emotions are generated and processed by the brain, we will now turn our attention to specific clinical conditions where emotions are dysregulated and how we currently approach the treatment of mental health conditions.

Week 6

Final presentations: In teams, students will present their emotion of choice and how it presents in health and disease along with the neurotransmitter, circuits/brain areas, and genetic underpinnings of the emotion.