The generosity of external donors helps DIBS achieve its mission to promote interdisciplinary brain science and translate discoveries into solutions for health and society.
In 2018-2019, gifts allowed DIBS to support research, education and community outreach, including:
- An additional, sixth Research Incubator Award [Link to Incubator Award page/Julie Rhodes sidebar]. The gift of $100,000 came from the DIBS External Advisory Board and honored the memory of Julie Rhodes, the first DIBS Director of Communications and passionate advocate for the neurosciences.
- The annual Autism Awareness Day event, co-sponsored with the Duke Center for Autism and Brain Development. The year’s event featured the Honourable Mike Lake, member of the Canadian Parliament, and his son, Jaden, who is on the autism spectrum. Jaden joined his father for the moving presentation, “Expect More: An Autism Adventure.”
- Innovative graduate student research. The three-year Wrenn Graduate Fellowship in Alzheimer’s Disease Research is made possible through the generosity of the Wrenn Trust, named for Duke alumna Karen L. Wrenn, who died of Alzheimer’s Disease. The second fellowship was awarded in 2019 to Will Huffman, a graduate student in Biomedical Engineering in the Pratt School of Engineering. He plans to develop strategies to prevent cognitive decline following surgery, a condition for which Alzheimer’s patients are particularly at risk, and which can accelerate the progression of the disease.
DIBS continues to support Yixin Ma, the inaugural Wrenn Graduate Fellow in Alzheimer’s Disease Research. Ma, who received the award in 2017, has been studying innovative ultrahigh-resolution diffusion MRI methods to detect and characterize early microstructural brain changes associated with Alzheimer’s Disease.
- Graduate student travel, also through the Wrenn Trust, allowing several students to travel to the annual Society for Neuroscience meeting and other research symposia.
- Many other interactive activities for students, faculty, and the community. Many gifts to the DIBS General Fund have allowed us to continue to Connect Minds, Advance Neuroscience, and Improve Lives.