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Neurobiology Ph.D. Candidate Named to “40 under 40” List

By Hailey Stiehl
Duke Graduate School Communications Intern

Meredith Schmehl
Meredith Schmehl, a Ph.D. candidate in neurobiology, has been named to the Triangle Business Journal’s “40 under 40” Leadership Award list for her leadership and advocacy for science communication and policy.

According to the Triangle Business Journal, the “40 under 40” Award is presented to the brightest, most promising young professionals to recognize their contributions to both their community and their organizations. All recipients must have had substantial community involvement, leadership roles of great importance within their organizations, and major career achievements in 2019.

Schmehl’s involvement in the community extends beyond her studies and her research into how the brain links senses of sight and hearing. She holds leadership positions within a number of nonprofits that seek to both make science accessible to non-scientists and help train early-career scientists who want to work in policy.

“I was nominated mainly for my leadership and advocacy in science communication and policy,” Schmehl said. “As an undergraduate at Carnegie Mellon, I founded a student group and led outreach events for children in schools, at museums, and on campus through a workshop that I designed. Since starting graduate school at Duke, I have expanded my involvement to include writing for adult audiences, producing a podcast about scientists and their careers, and advocating for the use of science in public policy.”

Upon completion of her Ph.D., Schmehl plans to work as a science communicator and science policy advocate, helping to “share scientific findings with the general public and fostering a greater understanding of the importance of science in society.”