Engage and Enable Blog

The aim of this blog is to show what’s happening at the Center for Neurotechnology among its faculty, student and staff members. To learn more about the center and its work, visit our Feature Stories page.


Mt. RainierWhen Josh Hancock moved to Seattle eight years ago, he envisioned a life outdoors, full of climbing, skiing, and hiking.

Though he managed to live out that dream for seven years exploring the Pacific Northwest, his life changed dramatically on December 3, 2014, when an injury left him without motor control or sensory function below his waist.

Studying abroad isn’t just for undergraduates looking for a good time.

Engineers, neuroscientists and others can study abroad in India or Germany, all while conducting cutting-edge research in neural engineering through two summer exchange programs offered by the CSNE.

The first program provides opportunities for students at all CSNE core partner institutions (University of Washington, San Diego State University, Massachusetts Institute of Technology) and students at the BrainLinks-BrainTools Center of Excellence at the University of Freiburg (Germany). This exchange program, which was formed in 2014, sends students from the UW, MIT and SDSU to University of Freiburg labs during the summer. Students at the University of Freiburg can also travel to CSNE-affiliated labs in Seattle, Boston and San Diego to conduct research.

Happily sacrificing their weekend to science, fifteen students from four universities gathered in the CSNE in Seattle for the second annual Hackathon.

Twenty-three Eton School (Bellevue, WA) students visited the CSNE on Tuesday, December 15 for a two-hour crash course in neural engineering. The 6th, 7th, and 8th grade students participated in several activities, including a demonstration on how electromyography can be used to control devices, and an interactive session that used brain teasers designed to illustrate the strengths and limitations of our sensory perception.

The Center for Sensorimotor Neural Engineering (CSNE) is lucky to have Dr. Judy Illes, Professor of Neurology and Canada Research Chair in Neuroethics at the University of British Columbia and Director of the National Core for Neuroethics at UBC, as an adviser for the neuroethics thrust. This partnership between the CSNE’s neuroethics thrust and Dr. Illes’ Core is unique, pairing the conceptual neuroethics expertise of CSNE thrust leaders Dr. Sara Goering and Dr. Eran Klein with the empirical expertise of Dr. Illes at the Core. Through their joint efforts, the two neuroethics groups advance cutting edge neuroethics research while enriching academic and public understanding of the ethical dimensions of neuroscience and neural engineering.