Letter from the Director

The Neuroscience Graduate Program (NGP) at the University of Michigan is exceptional.   It is the nexus of the neuroscience community at the University of Michigan, as it is a university-wide interdisciplinary program which encompasses faculty from multiple colleges, schools and institutes.  Indeed, there are over 120 participating faculty which encompass the School of Medicine, College of Literature Science and Arts, College of Engineering, School of Dentistry, School of Kinesiology and School of Public Health and who hold appointments among 29 Departments or Institutes.  Diversity coupled with neuroscience faculty prominence results in tremendous graduate student training opportunity and flexibility.  Moreover, as the longest standing Neuroscience Ph.D. program in the United States the NGP at Michigan has built an exceptional graduate program.  Collaborative interactions among NGP faculty result in integration across individual neuroscience disciplines and foster student research experiences through multiple levels.   The program is composed of 60 to 70 graduate students and has more than 130 successful and accomplished alumni that work in academic research, industrial research and development, academic medicine and biotechnology. 

The pride and strength of the NGP occurs via its truly remarkable graduate students.   The graduate students while diverse (currently, 52% women, 30% under-represented minorities) uniformly excel academically and in research targeted at understanding of the mysteries of the nervous system.  For example, from 2001-2011 the NGP students published more than 230 papers with most of these in notable and high impact professional journals.  In addition, NGP students very successfully compete for intramural and extramural fellowships, including pre-doctoral NSF and NIH NRSA awards as well as awards from specific private foundations.   Many of the activities of the NGP which foster development of an active and cohesive neuroscience community on campus (e.g.., Annual Retreat, Spring Symposium, and Community Outreach) are driven by the neuroscience graduate students.  The vitality of the NGP is also dependent upon weekly student presented neuroscience research seminars and by student participation in neuroscience journal clubs.  The combination of an integrative and interdisciplinary curriculum, weekly seminars and symposia, journal clubs and an active neuroscience graduate student organization (NGSO) actively prepares students for success in various careers.

The NGP at the University of Michigan encompasses the complete spectrum of neuroscience training and research and incorporates the full range of multidisciplinary techniques in a collegial, integrative and supportive environment.  Our goal is to facilitate training of the future leaders in the field of neuroscience and develop students that compete successfully in the scientific marketplace.