Graduate School of Biomedical Sciences

Student Profile: Kelli Restivo

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Kelli Restivo

Mentor: Andreas Tolias, Ph.D. Undergraduate major: Bachelor of Science in Mathematical Biology 
Undergraduate school: University of Houston 
Research Interests: Computational neuroscience 

What Advice Do You Have for Prospective Students? 
Choose lab rotations wisely, and consider exploring research you're not already familiar with. You may end up liking it. 

Why Did You Select the QCB program at BCM? 
I want to become an expert in computational biology, and this program aligns with my goals. BCM is located in the largest medical center in the world, so resources are abundant. They also offer a competitive stipend and lots of student support. 

What is Your Research Interest? 
Computational neuroscience, specifically using machine learning to study the visual cortex. 

Why Did You Select Your Mentor? 
My mentor is a leading expert in computational and systems neuroscience. His lab is large and well-funded, so there is a strong support system and opportunities to take on new projects. He is also positive and approachable, which are key criteria for me. 

What Aspects of Training Has Been Most Influential in Preparing For Your Intended Career? 
The research itself has helped me develop the transferable skills I would need to enter the industry after I graduate. I've become a better programmer and problem solver, and working in a group has helped me become a good team player. 

Did Baylor's Location in the Texas Medical Center Enhance Your Experience? 
Yes! I have several collaborators at institutions in the TMC. 

What Are Your Career Plans? 
I plan to work in industry, most likely for a biotech or data science company.