Bethany Stieve

Entering Class - 2017


Undergraduate Institution and Major:

University of Wisconsin, B.S. in Neurobiology, 2015

Graduate Advisor:

Esther Krook-Magnuson, Ph.D., Department of Neuroscience

Graduate Research:

My research aims to expand our understanding of hippocampal circuitry, especially in the context of epilepsy. Specifically, I will study how hippocampal long-range inhibitory neurons may contribute to or alleviate epileptic activity in rodent epilepsy models.

Graduate Awards:

  • The Morris Smithberg Memorial Prize 2018

Graduate Program in Neuroscience Committees:

  • Curriculum and Exam committee 2018-2020
  • Biomedical Research Day/Research Recognition Day Committee 2018-2020

Professional Outreach:

  • Brain Awareness Week 2018


Patrick Rothwell, Ph.D., Department of Neuroscience
Esther Krook-Magnuson, Ph.D., Department of Neuroscience
Matthew Johnson, Ph.D., Department of Biomedical Engineering
Ben Hayden, Ph.D., Department of Neuroscience

Thesis Committee Members:

Yasushi Nakagawa, Ph.D., Department of Neuroscience (Chair)
Esther Krook-Magnuson, Ph.D., Department of Neuroscience
Sarah Heilbronner, Ph.D., Department of Neuroscience
Tay Netoff, Ph.D., Department of Biomedical Engineering

Undergraduate Awards:

Distinctive Scholastic Achievement in the College of Agriculture and Life Sciences, 2015

Undergraduate or Post-Bac Research:

In the Department of Ophthalmology I analyzed a neuroprotective drug through in vivo and in vitro photic injury, which is a model of oxidative retinal degeneration.  

More recently, in the Department of Neuroscience, I investigated the role of dopamine in motivation and reward processing. I analyzed the effects of a dopamine transporter antagonist, methylphenidate (Ritalin), through behavioral and fMRI studies.

What Got You Interested In Research?

My initial interest in neuroscience was sparked by a Ted Talk given by Vilayanur Ramachandran (3 Clues to Understanding your Brain). I was very inspired by the idea of learning as a career, and after joining my first research lab, my passion for scientific discovery continued to grow.

Why Did You Choose MN?

The Graduate Program in Neuroscience had everything I was looking for in a graduate program – world-class research with enthusiastic faculty and students, set in an exciting place to live. I was especially impressed by the vast array of research on addiction. The summer program at Itasca was a great bonus!

Student Mentor and the Best Advice They Gave:

Morgan Newhoff: She gave me tips on setting up lab rotations.

Favorite Itasca Memory.

My favorite Itasca memory was karaoke at Lobo's!