The annual Neuroscience Retreat is open to all in the Washington University Neuroscience Community regardless of graduate program, department, or campus.

The Retreat is organized by graduate students in different programs, and is intended to foster scientific and social interaction among students, post docs, and faculty.

2020 Annual Neuroscience Retreat

Thursday October 1 – Friday October 2, 2020

This year’s Retreat will be on line – stay tuned for details!

Keynote Speakers

Marisela Morales, PhD

National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA)/NIH


Michael Dickinson, PhD

Cal Tech

“A lesson from an ancient brain: Changing is hard, keeping straight is harder” 


The Annual Neuroscience Retreat takes place each fall and is open to students (all graduate programs), post docs and faculty engaged in Neuroscience research.

The retreat is organized by graduate students and coordinated by the Office of Neuroscience Research.

Administrative assistance is provided by the McDonnell Center for Systems Neuroscience, the McDonnell Center for Cellular and Molecular Neurobiology, and the Division of Biology and Biomedical Sciences.

The Retreat program typically includes short talks, keynote talks, “table topics”, a poster session and NeurOlympics.  The 2020 Retreat program is yet to be finalized – stay tuned!

The Neuroscience Retreat is a great opportunity for all to share research findings, socialize, identify labs for rotation and otherwise engage.

T-shirt pick-up- stay tuned for information!

Thanks to those who submitted designs, and to everyone who voted! 

Congratulations to Allison Soung for the winning Neuro Retreat t-shirt design!

The Retreat Committee will contact those who ordered t-shirts with instructions on pick-up options.  

  • $5/ea Short sleeved
  • $10/ea Long sleeved

Advanced payment is required:

  • Preferred: Venmo to Carmen Horn (@Carmen-Horn; add in Venmo notes section, “Retreat T-shirt”)
  • Pay at pick-up (cash or check)

Questions regarding orders should be directed to Carmen Horn.

Registration is closed!

Registration is required for all who would like to attend the Neuroscience Retreat (and abstract submission does not count as a registration).

Please register by Thursday September 10 if you plan to attend.

Call for Abstracts closed!

Students and Post Docs:  Submit an abstract to be considered for a short talk.  Abstracts are reviewed by committee with multiple selection criteria including scientific merit, approach, graduate program (with an aim to feature multiple programs) and diversity.  

Deadline: Wednesday August 12, 11:59pm CST

Faculty members: There will be an opportunity for faculty members to engage with grad students looking for rotations or post doc opportunities. Stay tuned for additional details.

Thach Award

Grad students and post docs who give short talks on their research conducted at WashU are eligible to compete for a Tom Thach Award. 

Meet the Professors

This year’s virtual Retreat will include a session for students to meet with professors, to help students as they identify labs for rotation or post doc opportunities.  Stay tuned for additional details.


Introduced to the Retreat in 2016, NeurOlympics is a competition of mind, strength, speed, and endurance.  NeurOlympics is a neuroscience/lab/WashU themed trivia event that brings together graduate students, post docs, and faculty members from different cohorts, fields, and departments. Teams typically have 4-6 members and a faculty captain, and will compete for ultimate bragging rights and lovely gold, silver, and bronze medal prizes.   For any questions about NeurOlympics, please contact Sabin Nettles.

Retreat Archives

To review speakers at previous Neuroscience Retreats including the 2019 retreat, visit the Retreat Archives

Neuroscience Retreat Committee

The Office of Neuroscience Research is grateful to the students, faculty, and administrators who serve on this committee.


Shashank Anand
Saul Bello Rojas
Karl Friedrichsen
Jenna Krizan
Sabin Nettles
Chas Pfeifer
Zelun Wang
Jiwon Yi


Deanna Barch
Rob Gereau
Tamara Hershey
David Holtzman
Anneliese Schaefer
Paul Taghert
David Van Essen
Chuck Zorumski


Carmen Horn
Kate Ruzicka
Sally Vogt
Laura Williams

Questions or concerns?

Please contact Carmen Horn or Laura Williams.

Save the date!

2021 Annual Neuroscience Retreat

Thursday September 30 – Friday October 1, 2021

Trout Lodge, Potosi, MO