Brief Bio

I grew up in Iowa City, IA, with two sisters and parents who were academic immigrants from Mendoza, Argentina (yes, that's Malbec country). When I finished high school in 1996, I left to study physics and mathematics at Harvard (A.B., 2000) and Duke (Ph.D., 2005). I originally wanted to be a string theorist! While working on my doctoral thesis, however, I became increasingly interested in neuroscience. After finishing my Ph.D., I was lucky enough to get hired as a postdoc in the lab of Kenneth D. Harris, who was then at Rutgers. There I spent three years, completely immersing myself in my new field. I then spent a year as a postdoc at the Courant Institute, NYU, before coming back to the midwest in 2009 as an Assistant Professor of Mathematics at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln. In 2014, I moved to Penn State as an Associate Professor, and was promoted to Professor in 2019. My research is focused on developing theoretical and mathematical approaches to study neural networks and neural codes. I especially like connections between neuroscience and applied algebra, topology, geometry, and combinatorics. This work has been supported by multiple grants from NSF and NIH, as well as the Sloan and Woodrow Wilson foundations.