2020-2021 Luce Scholar

Maya Foster is an aspiring neuro-engineering researcher and global public health entrepreneur. She will graduate in May 2020 from Johns Hopkins University with a bachelor’s degree in Neuroscience. Maya has worked on projects exploring psychiatric disorders at the Johns Hopkins School of Medicine and the University of California San Francisco, including studying the pathology responsible for psychosis, a symptom of schizophrenia, and neural signatures characteristic of vitamin B6-dependent epilepsy. A data science internship in Israel impressed her with the scalability of technology and its potential to impact lives. Combined with her computer science training since freshman year, this experience shifted her interest in neuroscience toward a more computational-centric track. Maya volunteered with Making Neuroscience Fun, teaching neuroscience topics in Baltimore City classrooms and eventually serving as the outreach practicum’s co-chair. Maya is an advocate for diversity on her campus and has striven to bring awareness to issues women of color face. She created the first annual women of color conference and the first annual culture festival that united over 300 students, faculty, and staff on campus.

Since 2017, Maya has been a part of Aquatas, LLC, a student-run social enterprise passionate about addressing the global water shortage by providing an affordable water purification system. Intrigued by the process of designing a viable product that would improve lives in underserved communities, she was inspired to do the same in the neurological health space. Ultimately, Maya wants to dedicate her career to developing technological tools that improve our understanding and treatment of incurable neurological disorders such as Alzheimer’s Disease. She also aspires to make currently available treatment options for such disorders more accessible on a global scale. In her spare time, she enjoys reading, dancing, and playing her cello.