​​Sarah Asif
Neuroscientist and Policy/Partnerships Intern

Sarah Asif is a Neuroscientist with extensive knowledge of the brain. She holds a master’s degree in Neurobiology from Northwestern University and a bachelor’s degree in Neuroscience from the University of Illinois at Chicago (UIC). She graduated from UIC with academic praise, double honors, and received the highest Neuroscience Honor Distinction. She has over four years of research experience. She has researched investigating how delta-opioid receptors contribute to chronic migraine disorders. Through this, she has a publication in the American Journal of Headache. Her Master’s research consists of studying the genetics of olfactory sensory neurons and how they exhibit singular allele expression.

Apart from her studies, Sarah is a Mental Health Navigator in the Aga Khan Social Welfare Board - Mental Health from the United States. She advocates for mental health treatment and connects the Ismaili community to mental health professionals. She is also part of the Chicago Chess Foundation bringing the art of chess to terminal pediatric units helping patients cope with intense medical treatment.

As the newest member of the team and a policy intern, Sarah works with her mentor, Diana Mackay, to analyze landscapes for partnership opportunities, write and apply for NIH grants, and create new research lab buildings around the world. Sarah’s long term career goals is to become a clinical psychologist and a global neuroscientist to raise awareness for mental health illnesses, encourage brain science research, and advocate for STEM opportunities for students across the world.