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Our graduate program alumni go on to have successful careers in a wide variety of areas. Read about the accomplishments of some of our students who have received our Distinguished Alumnus Award.

Distinguished Alumni

Steve Manuck

smiling man2013 Award Winner





Mriganka Sur

smiling man

2012 Award Winner

Mriganka Sur finished his Ph.D. with Jon Kaas of the psychology department in 1978, did postdoctoral research at S.U.N.Y. Stony Brook, and became an assistant professor of neuroanatomy at Yale in 1983. He became associate professor in the Department of Brain and Cognitive Sciences at MIT in 1992, where he continued as full professor (1993) and department chair (1997-2014). He is now Director of the Simons Foundation Initiative on Autism and the Brain, at MIT. He has received many awards including election to the National Academy of Sciences (India), the Royal Society (UK) and the American Academy of Arts and Sciences (USA). He has well over 200 research publications on brain development, organization, plasticity, and disorders.

Leah Krubitzer

smiling woman2010 Award Winner

Leah Krubitzer finished her Ph.D. with Jon Kaas in the department of psychology in 1989. After postdoctoral training at the Vision, Touch, and Hearing Research Centre, University of Queensland, Australia where she studied the brains of marsupials, monotremes, and bats, she became an assistant professor of psychology at the University of California, Davis, where she is currently professor, level VII. She has been recognized with several awards, including the prestigious MacArthur Award, as well as the Herrick Award, and the Cajal Club Cortical Scholar Award. She has published extensively on how brain organization varies across mammalian taxa, brain development, and brain evolution. She has been a popular speaker at scientific meetings and universities.

Bob Levenson

2009 Award Winner





Randolph Blake

man leaning head on hand2007 Award Winner





Chai-youn Kim

smiling woman2006 Award Winner

Chai-youn Kim, completed her Ph.D. in cognitive neuroscience following undergraduate degree work at Seoul National University in psychology and aesthetics. She is now associate professor of psychology at Korea University, where she studies and teaches visual perception with emphasis on perceptual grouping, dynamics of bistable perception and synesthesia. In 2009, she was designated by Psychological Science as one of the field’s “rising young stars”, and at Korea University she has won the university’s prestigious SUKTAP Excellence in Teaching Award multiple times.