Every year, CNF selects a promising medical student, with an interest in child neurology, to receive the Child Neurology Foundation Neurodevelopmental Disabilities Summer Scholarship. This year’s recipient is Emily Isenstein.
Emily recently completed her first year of medical school at the University of Rochester, where she is a student in the Medical Scientist Training Program. In her undergraduate years, Emily was a member of the Affect and Cognition Lab at Cornell University and graduated with a degree in Human Development, concentrating in Developmental Behavioral Neuroscience. After graduating, Emily worked as a Clinical Research Coordinator at the Seaver Autism Center at Mount Sinai where she was inspired by the collaborative intersection of research and medicine to pursue an MD/PhD dual degree. At the University of Rochester, Emily plans to intertwine her medical and graduate education to become a physician scientist with a focus on autism spectrum disorder and related neurodevelopmental disorders. Emily has worked with individuals with neurodevelopmental disabilities for over ten years as an Equine-Assisted Therapy Instructor, and has long been fascinated by the role that kinesthetic awareness plays in autism etiology and presentation. With support from the NDD scholarship, this summer Emily will conduct research on visual-proprioceptive integration in autism that will serve as the foundation of her PhD research. She hopes that by further understanding variability in proprioceptive functioning, the field will move closer towards developing personalized therapeutics and care. After completing her schooling, Emily plans to pursue a career that will allow her to both provide and improve care for children with neurodevelopmental disabilities.