January 2012 Letter from the Director

Dear Colleagues, Friends, and Visitors,

I officially started my post as Director on August 16, 2011, and already new growth has begun in the Institute.

Our new website achieves two of our major aims: to enhance interactions within the NYU neuroscience community and to promote sharing of resources to advance science. I hope you will take the time to explore the site and learn about the ground breaking neuroscience initiatives happening now. Members of our community will find our events calendar and resource pages particularly helpful.  Students and postdocs interested in conducting research at NYU can find the information they need on our Training Programs. The site will also highlight new findings and accomplishments of our community.

Apart from the virtual connections promoted by our new website, we want to cultivate relationships and collaborations across NYU and beyond. To that end, we have planned an extensive calendar of events for the year to convene our scientists and clinicians regularly. Neuroscientists from the medical center, the Washington Square campus, and the Nathan Kline Institute developed these programs together, in particular the weekly Colloquium series and our Annual Neuroscience Retreat that form the foundation for our interactions.

We have also established a working group to consider novel strategies to increase cohesion and synergy among NYU neuroscientists, irrespective of campus or affiliation, while preserving the individuality that makes our various neuroscience programs so unique. This group includes myself, Tony Movshon, and David McLaughlin, among other junior and senior faculty.

In terms of new recruits, 11 new graduate students joined the Neuroscience & Physiology program this September. Stewart Bloomfield, director of the graduate program, in collaboration with a Graduate Program Committee and our Program Manager, Annette (Nina) Gray, is preparing for our 2012 graduate applications and is restructuring the curriculum to provide a more responsive and rigorous program for our outstanding students.

Gyorgy Buzsaki, our first faculty hire, will join us in March, and a new round of faculty recruitment is now beginning. In addition, our Executive Director, Stacie Bloom, has assembled the core of an outstanding team to manage and administer the Institute’s programs and initiatives, from developing this website and organizing joint community seminars and events, to supporting the School of Medicine Neuroscience & Physiology graduate program and preparing the Institute’s facilities.

In March, the Institute, including the Buzsaki and Tsien labs, will move into its first home in the Alexandria Life Sciences Center, a brand new, state-of-the-art building located one block south of the NYULMC “super block”. Our ultimate home, slated for completion in 2016, will be in the New Science Building that will contain 350,000 square feet dedicated to education and research.

With the world-class scientists already here at the university and the top-notch team at the Neuroscience Institute that is working to recruit new talent, NYU is poised to move to the forefront of neuroscience research. Please stay tuned to our website as we keep you updated of all the exciting changes at the Neuroscience Institute.


Director, NYU Neuroscience Institute