Mihaela says that the best quality that defines her personality the most is curiosity. Curiosity has pushed her to explore the human mind and the intricate inner workings in the brain. She has a B.Sc. in Psychology from the University of Birmingham and an M.Sc. in Human-Computer Interaction from University College London.
Whilst studying at the University of Birmingham, Mihaela conducted research on reward learning by looking into the links between the basal ganglia and the cerebellum and more specifically on the way the cerebellum influences the activity of the basal ganglia under transcranial direct current stimulation (tDCS) as compared to no stimulation at all.
The pursuit for innovation and research has led her to further continue her studies. During her master’s studies, Mihaela took part in an international competition, the Health-Tech Challenge. Her project involved creating a virtual application and using electrophysiological (EEG) and behavioral methods for exploring mind-wandering tendencies.
Working on this project has driven her passion for understanding the mechanisms of symptoms development in mental illness. Upon being one of the finalists of the competition, Mihaela decided to take this project for the master’s dissertation.
After completing her master’s degree, Mihaela undertook a slight turn and completed a 9-month internship with Digital Diabetes Media. Her role was a Virtual Reality Intern and as part of the placement she created a virtual reality meditation application that used 360 nature videos as the visual stimulation.
Mihaela recalls always being motivated to go further than the curriculum and explore various areas of the topics she researched. This is one of the main reasons she decided to start writing scientific articles. She finds it extremely intellectually stimulating to read on the latest research of not only topics that she is familiar with, but also new areas of science. And writing is just a pleasurable and rewarding activity for her.
Mihaela’s research aspirations lie in the area of neural circuitry and mental illness and more specifically in researching trait markers for psychiatric disorders as a way to design better diagnosing and pre-intervention procedures. Alongside her research activities Mihaela likes to call herself an artist. She enjoys painting and drawing characters for different stories.