© 2019 NatBrainLab

Research Assistant 
 

Background: Speech and Language Therapist

Contact: maeliosa.ni_almhain [a] kcl.ac.uk

Nationality: Irish

Maelíosa Ní Almhain

My interest in how the brain works began when I was still in school; at the age of 16 my project on the placebo effect (“It’s all in your head”) was accepted for the Irish Young Scientist & Technology Exhibition. For my undergraduate degree I studied Mechanical Engineering at University College Dublin with a view to becoming a biomedical engineer. My dissertation (“Development of a new UCD finite element head model for impact simulations”) looked at mechanical predictors of traumatic brain injury. 

 

During my time in University College Dublin my volunteer work with the UCD SVP society helped me to develop an interest in working with people rather than machines. After gaining some experience as a Speech and Language Therapy Assistant at the Mater University Hospital in Dublin, I applied for my Masters in Speech and Language Sciences at UCL. Following graduation I worked as a Speech and Language Therapist at Southend University Hospital, where I developed my interest in communication deficits after stroke. 

 

In September 2017 I joined the Natbrainlab to work on the NBLStroke project, under the supervision of Dr. Forkel and Prof. Catani. The project aims to identify neuroimaging predictors of recovery in stroke patients, looking in particular at the role of bilateral connections in recovery of language and visuospatial attention.

 

My experiences in a wide variety of organisations and communities has allowed me to get to know many different people from many different backgrounds. This has taught me to take into account multiple points of view and opinions when considering problems, as well as ensuring that I always have a couch to sleep on wherever I find myself. When I’m not at work I enjoy spending time swing dancing and trampolining. Only one of those hobbies has resulted in me once fracturing my face, but there's still time...