Discover more about the student experience at QBI.

Alessandra Donato

"I carried out my undergraduate research project  at the National Research Council in Naples, Italy, where in 2012 I met my current supervisor Dr Massimo A. Hilliard who was giving a seminar. It did not take me long to realise that his lab at QBI would have represented a great setting for my doctoral research. Moreover, the rich neuroscience environment that characterizes the UQ scientific community facilitated my choice. Pursuing a PhD at QBI is not only giving me the opportunity to work in a renowned international research laboratory, which I appreciate as an invaluable experience for my future career as a scientist, but it is also letting me experience an exciting new life in Australia."

Stephanie Biergans

"In 2011 I visited QBI to finish the research for my Master thesis project on Epigenetics and long-term memory formation in honeybees. As the project worked out well and I liked QBI and Australia, I decided to come back to do my PhD here. I am doing a joint PhD between the University of Queensland and the University of Konstanz, Germany. This cooperation is a great opportunity to spend time abroad during my PhD but still stay connected with my home university. QBI offers great facilities and a lot of expertise in Neuroscience. As I am working with honeybees I of course especially profit from the unique bee house facility. Besides the outstanding facilities, it is very interesting to work in an institute as diverse as QBI. I really enjoy the variety of research topics, techniques and people from different backgrounds at QBI. I profit a lot from talking to people working in different areas of Neuroscience. This experience helps me to broaden the way I think about my own research and QBI offers a great environment for this."

Nicholas Hughes

"While studying mathematics in undergrad at UQ, I had some exposure to my supervisor, Professor Geoff Goodhill's work at QBI using mathematics to investigate how the brain develops. After finishing my undergrad degree, I decided to do my PhD in Geoff's research group, as using my mathematical and computational skills to try to understand the brain is extremely interesting and rewarding. As well as the computational neuroscience lab, QBI houses a large number of researchers whose work covers a wide variety of topics, and I find being exposed to their world-class research in many different areas of neuroscience to be not only interesting but stimulating for my own work."

Karly Turner

"I completed my dual Bachelor of Science/Arts degree at UQ followed by Honours in zoology with an interest in behaviour and physiology. I wasn't sure if this was the field I wanted to stay in and started work as a research assistant for Associate Professor Tom Burne at QBI. Once I started working at QBI I realised that I was passionate about behavioural neuroscience, and that QBI offered the best opportunity and support to give PhD students a head start in their career. We have access to world-class facilities, international researchers and a collaborative environment that fosters the highest quality research. My project aims to improve the translation of results from animal and human research in cognitive disorders. Since I have been at QBI I have been able to publish my results, travel to present at conferences, and I will be attending the largest neuroscience conference in the world held in San Diego. Working in an environment that is dynamic, challenging and exciting has helped me to develop the skills I need for my future career."

Toni Turnbull

"I chose QBI for my PhD because of its reputation in neuroscience research, a field that I have always been interested in. The facilities, the staff and the other students are all exceptional. Neuroscience is surprisingly diverse and QBI encompasses many aspects of it, with labs researching everything from neural development to neurodegenerative diseases. I have been fortunate to work under the guidance of Associate Professor Elizabeth Coulson for my PhD and have access to the knowledge of many other world class researchers. My PhD focuses on a family of growth factors, called neurotrophins, and their influence on the molecular mechanisms which underpin Alzheimer's disease pathology. We are currently testing a candidate therapeutic compound developed in our lab on animal models of Alzheimer's disease and hope to further our understanding of this devastating neurodegenerative disease."

Casey Linton

"I began my research at QBI after participating in the Australian Brain Bee Challenge, a high school neuroscience competition. As a state finalist, I was given the opportunity to complete a small research project in the lab of Associate Professor Massimo Hilliard. This experience was a turning point for me – it introduced me to the fascinating research undertaken at QBI and sparked an interest in studying nerve regeneration, which I have continued to pursue as a PhD student. QBI provides strong support for its students and many opportunities to interact with researchers in different fields. It is the perfect place to develop the knowledge and skills for a successful career in neuroscience."

Daniel Bademosi

"'As an international student, while studying for my Master's degree at UQ, I was opportune to be placed in different laboratories for my rotation projects and also visit the laboratories of course-work tutors. It was awesome all the way! The depth of knowledge of the Group Heads and their willingness to answer both tough & seemingly stupid questions and the cutting edge technology available in all the laboratories at QBI intrigued me and helped in making the decision to stay in QBI for my doctorate pursuit."

Lisa Wittenhagen

"Since I had the privilege to undertake a research internship in 2012/2013 in the laboratory of Professor Jason Mattingley at QBI as part of my Research Master I had a first hand opportunity to experience the excellent research culture at QBI. I discovered that the research facilities are world class and create an ideal environment to nurture the careers of young researchers, and not far into my internship I made the decision that I would love to come back to QBI to undertake my PhD. In my PhD I am using non-invasive neuroimaging techniques such as electroencephalography (EEG) to investigate how pre-attentive and goal directed factors interact to shape the contents of our visual awareness. I experience QBI as a research institute with exceptional standards and I appreciate the lively exchange with many research groups mediated by a number of academic and social events."

Michael Troup

"In my spare time when I was younger, I used to collect junk mail and cut out pictures of people’s heads and paste them into a collage pinned up on a cork board. I really think this started my fascination with neuroscience and made it an obvious career choice. While doing my undergraduate degree at UQ, I was exposed to lecturers working at QBI who influenced me to continue on in science and complete my Masters here. During my Masters I did research into the mechanisms of general anaesthesia and it really made me think: ‘What’s up with this stuff?’ I knew I had to pursue this question further so I’m continuing some of this work as a PhD student. The excellent facilities, staff and support at QBI make this possible. Hopefully, the training and development provided through QBI will help launch my career as a world-renowned scientist and future Nobel laureate. That will show my high school teachers who didn’t think I would amount to anything."