Engage and Enable Blog

The aim of this blog is to show what’s happening at the Center for Neurotechnology among its faculty, student and staff members. To learn more about the center and its work, visit our Feature Stories page.


This summer I had the privilege of participating in the 10-week CSNE Research Experience for Undergraduates (REU) program as a UW Fellow. I joined 10 other “REUs” from around the country and eight Seattle-area high school students who were participating in the CSNE’s Young Scholars Program. Like me, they were all excited about getting involved in neural engineering research.

Over the course of my research experience project, I learned some C++ programming language, created customized 3D-printed parts, and met many interesting and enthusiastic people.

For middle and high school teachers, summers are a time to recharge after a long school year. It can be a rare chance to travel or spend quality time with friends and family.

But for the past four years, a small group of Seattle-area educators have elected to spend their summers on the UW Seattle campus, conducting engineering research in a CSNE-affiliated lab and developing a curriculum unit to bring the principles of neural engineering to their students.

Mt. RainierWhen Josh Hancock moved to Seattle eight years ago, he envisioned a life outdoors, full of climbing, skiing, and hiking.

Though he managed to live out that dream for seven years exploring the Pacific Northwest, his life changed dramatically on December 3, 2014, when an injury left him without motor control or sensory function below his waist.

Studying abroad isn’t just for undergraduates looking for a good time.

Engineers, neuroscientists and others can study abroad in India or Germany, all while conducting cutting-edge research in neural engineering through two summer exchange programs offered by the CSNE.

The first program provides opportunities for students at all CSNE core partner institutions (University of Washington, San Diego State University, Massachusetts Institute of Technology) and students at the BrainLinks-BrainTools Center of Excellence at the University of Freiburg (Germany). This exchange program, which was formed in 2014, sends students from the UW, MIT and SDSU to University of Freiburg labs during the summer. Students at the University of Freiburg can also travel to CSNE-affiliated labs in Seattle, Boston and San Diego to conduct research.

Happily sacrificing their weekend to science, fifteen students from four universities gathered in the CSNE in Seattle for the second annual Hackathon.