Kent State’s Brain Health Research Institute Celebrates ‘Collaboratories’ Grand Opening

Kent State alumnus and MIT endowed professor gives keynote on modern neuroscience

Kent State University’s Brain Health Research Institute celebrated the grand opening of its new lab spaces on Friday, Nov. 5, with an afternoon of activities that included a keynote presentation, space dedication, tours and student research demonstrations. The new space, featuring interdisciplinary research facilities, is located on the lower level of the Integrated Sciences Building on the Kent Campus.

Earl Miller, Ph.D., a Kent State University alumnus, opened the Brain Health Research Institute’s grand opening celebration with a keynote presentation.
Kent State’s Brain Health Research Institute is a nationally recognized collaborative effort that taps passionate faculty and staff from across the university – not just in science-based departments, but in social sciences, the arts and humanities – to bring together their unique strengths as they solve brain-related challenges and more. Research topics span the range of neuroscience and include how hearing and listening change across childhood, reprogramming the brain with exercise, recovery from chronic spinal cord injury, new treatments for common forms of infertility, and the effects of poetry on brain health. In addition to Kent State, the Brain Health Research Institute includes brain researchers at Northeast Ohio Medical University (NEOMED), Cleveland Clinic and Akron Children’s Hospital, who support collaborations that span the different institutions. The Brain Health Research Institute is also a member of the Cleveland Brain Health Initiative based at Case Western Reserve University, helping extend the reach of neuroscience across Northeast Ohio. 

“The Brain Health Research Institute represents a collaborative effort of neuroscientists to span multiple disciplines, with the aim of using knowledge of brain health as a window leading to new treatments for brain and nervous system disease,” said Michael Lehman, Ph.D., inaugural director of Kent State’s Brain Health Research Institute. “Our new labs and facilities, designed with the idea that research space should be a facilitator for collaboration and innovation, will elevate that work even further and add to the distinctiveness of neuroscience at Kent State and our partner institutions.”

The Brain Health Research Institute not only builds on a long-standing tradition of neuroscience research at Kent State, but it also represents a new and different way of promoting interdisciplinary research about the brain and training for the next generation of scientists. The institute is an innovative training ground for undergraduate students, graduate students and postdoctoral fellows in an environment that combines hands-on access, experience and mentorship with knowledge, resources and opportunities. 

Earl Miller, Ph.D., opened the celebration with a keynote presentation, “One Journey From 20th to 21st Century Neuroscience.” Miller graduated from Kent State in 1985 and later earned a Master of Arts and a doctorate in psychology and neuroscience from Princeton University. He is a leading cognitive neuroscientist whose research focuses on neural mechanisms of cognitive, or executive, control. Miller is the Picower Professor of Neuroscience with the Picower Institute for Learning and Memory and the Department of Brain and Cognitive Sciences at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT). He is also the chief scientist and co-founder of SplitSage. 

Following the keynote presentation, guests gathered in the Integrated Sciences Building lobby for a space dedication followed by tours of the Brain Health Research Institute’s new collaboratories and labs. “Collaboratories” are a different kind of research facility that foster interdisciplinary research using a nontraditional approach that creates shared core facilities. With state-of-the-art equipment and flexible lab space, the institute’s collaboratories enable researchers from diverse disciplines to bring their collective talents to bear on important unresolved questions about the brain and brain diseases. For more information about Kent State’s Brain Health Research Institute, visit

Kent State’s Brain Health Research Institute is one of the university’s Forever Brighter comprehensive fundraising campaign priorities, falling under the Expanding University Initiatives focus. Fundraising efforts for the institute are in support of research collaboratories, endowed positions, undergraduate student fellows program and community outreach. 

The Forever Brighter comprehensive campaign launched in October 2021 and is the most ambitious fundraising campaign in the history of Kent State with a goal of raising $350 million to support student success, university initiatives and capital improvements. To date, more than $309 million has been raised for these important programs and initiatives. For more information about Kent State’s Forever Brighter fundraising campaign, visit

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Photo Caption:
Earl Miller, Ph.D., a Kent State University alumnus, opened the Brain Health Research Institute’s grand opening celebration with a keynote presentation.

Media Contacts:
Julie Miller,, 330-672-1461
Emily Vincent,, 330-672-8595

POSTED: Monday, November 15, 2021 04:21 PM
UPDATED: Monday, March 04, 2024 05:08 AM
Julie Miller