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Grad Slam Finalist Profile: Neuroscience Ph.D. Student Lindsay Cameron

Lindsay Cameron in the lab
Monday, April 13, 2020 (All day)

Meet Lindsay Cameron,
Neuroscience Graduate Student and Grad Slam Finalist

Lindsay Cameron

Program, Degree & Year of Study
Neuroscience Ph.D. program, 4th year

Research Interests
Depression (and other neuropsychiatric disorders), how drugs work and how drugs affect connectivity between brain regions

Previous Degree(s) & College(s)
BSc. McGill University

Title of Grad Slam Presentation
Rethinking Psychedelics

Describe your presentation style in three words. 
Engaging, energetic and articulate!

What did you do to prepare for Grad Slam? 
Practice, practice, practice! Both alone and in front of friends and labmates.

What initially attracted you to your field of study? 
Psychedelics are some of the most powerful drugs we know of, and yet we know very little about them. Given the urgent need for antidepressants and related therapeutics across the country, psychedelics are a promising option.

What do you like to do in your free time? 
Go backpacking! I love to explore, so when I'm not in lab, you can usually find me in the woods or summiting mountains :)

Do you have any mentors who helped you develop your interest and strength in research communication? If so, how did they help you?
I have two mentors I would like to recognize. My thesis PI, David Olson, has spent a lot of time and effort in refining our presentation skills. Secondly, my friend Stela Petkova presented at Grad Slam last year and also made it to the top 10! She made it look fun and it's the reason I tried it out myself. She's since entered coach-mode and has been helping me refine and update my style. Huge thanks to Stela!very has become!

You’ve been involved in organizing NeuroFest, an annual Brain Awareness Week event that includes public lectures, interactive booths, and a research poster contest, attract hundreds of individuals and families each year. How did you get involved in this effort and why it is important to you?
I got involved originally before I even got into grad school (I was working as a tech) because I just wanted to volunteer and learn more about the brain. It was a great experience to both learn, but also to teach to the general public.  There's scientific lectures, but there's also poster presentations and activity tables, it's very interactive. Everyone is there, from kids and families to elderly folks, and I love that everyone has a chance to learn and get involved. Now it's become rooted in my annual schedule, and now each year I look forward to meeting some of the same people, meeting new faces, still learning new things and teaching what I do know. 

Where do you see yourself in 10 years? 
With my own lab, investigating these types of questions!

About This Year's Final Round

Due to the shelter-in-place order and the ongoing Coronavirus situation, UC Davis Graduate Studies chose to cancel the 2020 UC Davis Grad Slam final round event on April 7. 

Though the event’s cancellation draws this year’s competition to a close, Graduate Studies is eager to continue rewarding and recognizing the efforts of this year’s finalists. Graduate Studies, along with Grad Slam sponsors Public Scholarship and Engagement and Global Affairs, will be awarding each of the ten finalists a prize amount of $625. 

Graduate Studies will also be highlighting each of the finalists in web profiles and working with campus partners to identify alternative ways in which their contributions to society might be publicly recognized and celebrated over the course of the next year. 

For more information about UC Davis Grad Slam, visit the Grad Slam website or contact Kathryn Raley, Program and Event Manager for Graduate Studies, at

UC Davis Grad Slam Sponsors

Graduate Studies would like to thank this year's UC Davis Grad Slam sponsors for their generosity and support.

The Office of Research serves as the primary campus resource for matters related to research and technology commercialization. OR provides services and resources to simulate research, facilitate collaborations,  optimize infrastructure, ensure compliance and  translate innovations into commercial applications for societal benefit. Learn more by visiting the UC Davis Office of Research website.

Public Scholarship and Engagement (PSE) is fostering a culture of engagement at UC Davis that increases the university’s impact through mutually-beneficial relationships that have local, regional, statewide, and global reach. We envision UC Davis research, teaching and learning that serves society and makes a positive difference in the world. Learn more by visiting the Public Scholarship and Engagement website.

Global Affairs brings the world to UC Davis, welcoming more than 10,000 international students, scholars and leaders, and hosting programs that inspire global curiosity, understanding and engagement. Compelled by the valuable outcomes of thinking globally, we make transformative opportunities a reality by supporting the thousands of students and faculty learning and researching globally—and by facilitating collaborations that tackle the world’s most pressing challenges through more than 150 global partnerships.

Putting our vision of a UC Davis community that engages, thrives, and leads in this interconnected world into action, Global Affairs is in pursuit of an ambitious goal: Global Education for All.

About Graduate Studies

Graduate Studies at UC Davis includes over 100 dynamic degree programs and a diverse and interactive student body from around the world. Known for our state-of-the-art research facilities, productive laboratories and progressive spirit – UC Davis offers collaborative and interdisciplinary curricula through graduate groups and designated emphasis options, bringing students and faculty of different academic disciplines together to address real-world challenges.
UC Davis graduate students and postdoctoral scholars become leaders in their fields: researchers, teachers, politicians, mentors and entrepreneurs. They go on to guide, define and impact change within our global community.

For information on Graduate Studies’ current strategic initiatives, visit the Graduate Studies strategic plan page.