In 2015, Emma received a diagnosis that she has hemiplegic migraines. Unfortunately, her neurological disorder is not the only one in the family, as her younger brother has had three grand mal seizures since 2016 and has been diagnosed with Idiopathic Generalized Epilepsy (IGE).
Emma has seen how seizures affect all aspects of her brother’s life. Their parents must work with the school administration and nurse to have a predetermined plan to make sure if a seizure occurs at school, with steps in place to ensure he is safe during and after a seizure. He must learn to manage his time, stay organized, receive adequate sleep, and reduce stress to remain successful in his studies. He also struggles with feels of isolation and with school bullying.
Currently, Emma is attending Rose-Hulman Institute of Technology to receive a Biomedical Engineering degree. She hopes to work with artificial intelligence, nanotechnology, and the brain because of her desire to stop or reduce seizures. Her ultimate goal is to analyze brain signals from epilepsy patients and predict seizures, as this technology has the capability to improve people’s lives and reduce the physical, emotional, and financial costs of one of the world’s most common neurological disorders. Ultimately, she believes that one day this technology will not only warn people with epilepsy of imminent seizures but constantly adapt to how their brains change over time to decrease or eliminate them altogether.