Ellen Zippi

Neuroscience Ph.D. Candidate
Helen Wills Neuroscience Institute 
University of California, Berkeley


About Me

My Interests

Hi, I'm Ellen! I am passionate about translating fundamental scientific knowledge into new and transformative technology. My goal is to work on cutting-edge research projects at the intersection of health and machine learning that will ultimately translate to the real world. I'm currently working on my Ph.D. in Neuroscience. My research projects use brain-machine interfaces, which translate neural signals from the brain into control signals for devices like robotic arms, computer cursors, or deep-brain stimulators, with the goal of advancing our understanding of how the brain learns and improving neurotherapies.



My Story

I am a fourth-year Ph.D. student in Dr. Jose Carmena’s lab

at the Helen Wills Neuroscience Institute at the University of California, Berkeley.

My path to research began at Center for Learning and Memory at the University of Texas at Austin, where I worked in Dr. Alison Preston’s lab as an undergraduate research assistant. I completed an honors thesis on the representation of semantic knowledge of people and places and graduated as a Dean’s Honored Graduate. I also worked as a summer research assistant at the Max Planck Institute for Ornithology in Seewiesen, Germany as a DAAD RISE Fellow where I worked with Dr. Manfred Gahr’s group studying innate vocalizations in zebra finches. 

These research opportunities gave me an appreciation for quantitative methods and big data. Interested in applications of machine learning to solve real word problems, I joined the Helen Wills Neuroscience Graduate Program at the University of California, Berkeley where I currently study brain-machine interfaces in Dr. Jose Carmena’s lab as a National Science Foundation Graduate Research Fellow. Check out my research projects page to learn more

about the work I have been doing!