Max Planck Florida Institute to Launch International Brain Research Training Program
Tuesday, March 10, 2015
Universities and Max Planck Institutions in the U.S. and Germany will globalize brain research education by offering the International Max Planck Research School in Brain and Behavior
The Max Planck Florida Institute for Neuroscience (MPFI), in collaboration with local research university Florida Atlantic University (FAU), University of Bonn (Bonn, Germany), and the Center for Advanced European Studies and Research (Bonn, Germany), is globalizing education in brain research with an all-new International Max Planck Research School (IMPRS) for Brain & Behavior. This program, with North American headquarters in South Florida, will offer its students a world class, competitive doctoral program while giving them the unique opportunity to learn, train and work in other countries.
“With this new doctoral program, neuroscience research in South Florida will be elevated to a global platform, one that provides the ideal environment for developing the next generation of scientific leaders,” said David Fitzpatrick, CEO and Scientific Director at MPFI. “Having the opportunity to learn from an international team of investigators at the cutting edge of brain research is a fantastic catalyst for high impact discoveries.”
Over the next few months, the four international partners will collaborate to develop curriculum centered on understanding the functional organization of neural circuits, and in particular, how the activity of neural circuits mediates behaviors. Using state of the art technologies, many pioneered by Max Planck scientists, doctoral students and researchers will explore multiple aspects of brain function including the neural basis of sensory processing, motor control, and learning and memory. The program will prepare exceptional students for an exciting career in brain research while at the same time providing the knowledge base that is critical for advances in treating neurological and psychiatric disorders.
With nearly 1,000 biotech, pharmaceutical and medical device companies and more than 44,000 healthcare establishments already located in Florida, the strategic placement of IMPRS for Brain and Behavior is ideal to promote the continued growth of Florida’s life sciences industry.
Florida Atlantic University already has strong ties to MPFI through an existing Integrative Biology and Neuroscience Ph.D. Program. FAU President Dr. John W. Kelly and Dr. Fitzpatrick’s strong commitment to collaboration ensures the program will have the academic and scientific support it needs for success.
“Our intention is to turn our Jupiter campus into the science center everyone can be extremely proud of, attracting the very brightest people from around the world so that it becomes a magnet for the best academic talent and students who would have the benefit of having access to both entities,” said FAU’s Dr. Kelly.
International Max Planck Research Schools, the larger body that houses IMPRS for Brain and Behavior, has been educating doctoral candidates since 2000. Currently, there are 80 International Max Planck Institutes that are associated with 63 International Max Planck Research Schools in fields ranging from chemistry, physics and technology to biology and social sciences. Thanks to IMPRS, graduate students have access to mentoring by world class scientists and the resources to take on projects that require special equipment.
The Center of Advanced European Studies and Research, University of Bonn and the Bonn International Graduate School of Medical Neuroscience study how neuronal networks underlie behavior. Along with FAU, all four institutions will now join together with Max Planck Florida Institute for Neuroscience to give students the opportunity to share resources, facilities, faculties and students in the interest of high-quality research. The International Max Planck Research School for Brain and Behavior will accept applications for the Fall 2016 semester later this year.
About the International Max Planck Research School for Brain and Behavior:
IMPRS for Brain and Behavior involves two partnerships on each side of the Atlantic: the Center for Advanced European Studies and Research (CAESAR) and the University of Bonn (Uni Bonn) in Germany and the Max Planck Florida Institute for Neuroscience (MPFI) and Florida Atlantic University (FAU) in the United States. The program aims to recruit outstanding doctoral students and immerse them in a stimulating environment that provides novel technologies to elucidate the function of brain circuits from molecules to animal behavior. IMPRS for Brain and Behavior faculty will guide students to develop the critical and creative mindset required for a successful scientific career. The comprehensive and diverse expertise of the faculty in the exploration of brain-circuit function using advanced imaging and optogenetic techniques combined with comprehensive training in fundamental neurobiology will provide students with an exceptional level of knowledge to pursue a successful independent research career.