I want to know how collections of atoms, mere star dust, came to be intelligent. To achieve this, my work seeks to characterize what type of system the brain is—what are its components, how do they interact to compute information, and how did the brain evolve to this state? Specifically, I study the brain as a complex biological network by analyzing functional and structural brain images with graph theory. In particular, I test the theory that the brain is a modular information processing system, and that critical "connector nodes" are necessary for this functional architecture.
I studied Philosophy and Psychology at Columbia University, where I graduated Valedictorian. I also received Summa Cum Laude and honors in both majors, working with Ed E. Smith and Daphna Shohamy on Cognitive Neuroscience, and Katja Vogt and Achille Varzi on Plato, Chomsky, and Philosophy of Science. I am currently a fourth year PhD student. I am a National Science Foundation Graduate Student Fellow.