Joy Michael Manda
I am currently pursuing Master’s in Computer Science at Rutgers University. I have always been interested in the practical applications of machine learning and computer vision. During my undergrad, I worked on a research paper on explainable AI to better understand the mechanisms of why neural networks are so efficient. I have also worked on developing an application that tracks eye movement in response to a stimulus which could also be used as a test for color blindness. I am currently working as a research assistant in the Parker Lab to analyze and understand how the neurons in the mouse brain encode visual and non-visual information.
My goal is to understand how visually guided behaviors are mediated by neural circuits, and how these circuits change across development and in neurological disorders. Early in my career, my research focused on development and disease in the nervous system. I obtained my B.S. in cognitive neuroscience from Brown University, where I conducted an honors thesis on the development of electrical synapses in the thalamic reticular nucleus with Dr. Barry Connors, under the supervision of Dr. Scott Cruickshank. As a research assistant with Dr. Arnold Kriegstein at UCSF, I worked on a variety of projects on the development of human and mouse neocortex, including cortical synaptic development research under the supervision of Dr. Corey Harwell, as well as a stem cell therapy in a rat model of Parkinson’s disease. As a PhD student with Dr. Anatol Kreitzer, I studied the synaptic basis of motor impairments in the basal ganglia of a parkinsonian mouse model. As a postdoc with Dr. Cristopher Niell, my research focused on vision – specifically, how mice actually use their vision to guide natural behavior, and how neurons in the brain process visual information under such dynamic conditions.