Brain Week Rhode Island returning for fourth year


The fourth annual Brain Week Rhode Island (brainweekri) will take place from March 9-17 in multiple locations in Rhode Island.

The event is a singular celebration of the brain, featuring cerebrally stimulating panels and presentations on the most current brain research along with fun, interactive, brain-themed events for all ages.

Most events are free of charge. The program also features “BRAINY” classroom sessions designed to inspire young people to consider science as a profession.

Since its inception in 2016, the goal of Brain Week Rhode Island has been to share with the community the expansive knowledge of the brain and neuroscience research happening in the Ocean State. The event brings together specialists in many fields to make brain science and brain health accessible for everyone.

“There is a wealth of neuroscience in Rhode Island and a growing public interest in the most remarkable computing device known to date: the human brain. People want to know just how everything we do, feel and perceive – from dreams to our poor life decisions – resides in the brain,” said Victoria Heimer-McGinn, PhD, chair of Brain Week Rhode Island and assistant professor at Roger Williams University. “It’s no surprise that in only four years we have experienced substantial growth in terms of our audiences, supporters and collaborators. This year we open with a panel on opioids, one of the more pressing issues of our time, where we hope to gap the bridge between complex human behavior and basic brain research.”

Activities during Brain Week Rhode Island include creative learning opportunities, expert panels, workshops, a film screening, a dance for the aging and movement challenged, a “Moth-like” story telling event, art shows, and two brain fairs with interactive science exhibits at the University of Rhode Island and Brown University.

Topics range from the basic science of just how the most complex object in the known universe works, to how it can be damaged or malfunction; understanding and preventing suicide; exploring fear and social connections through the sciences; and Alzheimer’s disease, among others.

Brain Week RI is a communal effort, organized and spearheaded by Cure Alliance for Mental Illness with sponsors/partners including Brown University's Carney Institute for Brain Science; the Ryan Institute at URI; The Association of Migraine Disorders; The Providence Veterans Administration Medical Center; the Norman Prince Neurosciences Institute; and the Neurology and the Memory and Aging Program at Butler Hospital.

Brain Week also features an inventive and inspiring educational outreach program, “BRAINY School Visits.” Neuroscientists from Brown University and Roger Williams University will visit PK-12 classrooms in Providence, Central Falls, Pawtucket and Bristol to inspire the next generation of brain scientists. Demonstrations will feature real human brains and other interactive learning activities, sometimes in Spanish as well as English.

Most Brain Week RI events are free and open to the public. Advance reservations are strongly advised where available. For a full schedule of Brain Week events and to reserve event tickets, visit or\brainweekri.