Young alum takes study of addiction from Waco to Maastricht to Atlanta
Rachel Cliburn, BS ’12, discovered the joy of research while just a sophomore at Baylor, then got to experience life overseas through a study abroad program as a junior.
Those experiences paved the way for her current work as a Fulbright Scholar in The Netherlands researching how the brain affects and is affected by addiction. With her master’s degree completed from the University of Maastricht (the same place she studied abroad through Baylor), this fall Cliburn will continue her research as she begins work on a doctorate in neuroscience at Emory University in Atlanta.
“I don’t think it’s realistic to cure addiction because the problem isn’t just within the pathological pathways of the brain,” Cliburn told the Chicago Daily Herald, her hometown paper. “But we can enable people who’ve struggled to have a more normal and healthy and productive life. That’s the goal, I think, of this research.”
“Rachel Cliburn might be the single most impressive student I’ve had the pleasure of teaching in my nearly 25 years at Baylor,” says Dr. Charles Weaver, BS ’84, a psychology/neuroscience professor at Baylor since 1989. “She is the kind of student all of us dream of teaching, and I have little doubt that in the not-too-distant future, I will see her recognized not only one of Baylor’s most accomplished graduates, but as one of the field’s emerging leaders.”
Sic ’em, Rachel!