Alumna, Georgetown doctoral student Megan Majocha, ’18, featured in NIH publication

Madan Vasishta, ’71, G-’73, & PhD ‘83,  has letter published in The New Yorker

Megan Majocha, ’18, a Ph.D. student in tumor biology at Georgetown University, was featured in the September 16th issue of NIH Report, a biweekly online newsletter for employees of the National Institutes of Health. The article, titled Deaf NCI Fellow Wins Awards for Research Presentation, explains that Majocha received a travel scholarship to present her findings at the International Mammalian Genome Society (IMGC) conference in Vancouver, British Columbia. She asked that her long-standing team of scientific interpreters, who are familiar with her scientific research concepts and signing style, accompany her to the conference. 

A partnership between the NIH Office of Research Services and the National Cancer Institute, where Majocha is affiliated with the Laboratory of Cancer Biology and Genetics, made it possible to grant her request and to cover her travel and interpreting costs. She received the Lorraine Flaherty Award for outstanding presentations at the Trainee Symposium. This award, given to the top three presenters, provides the opportunity to present at the plenary session. Megan’s presentation at the plenary session also won her a second award for most outstanding talk. 


Madan Vasishta, ’71, G-’73, & PhD ’83, had a letter published in the September 6 issue of The New Yorker. Vasishta commented on an item the previous month about the relative lack of sound in electric vehicles. He noted that deaf and hard of hearing people often cannot hear internal combustion (gasoline) engines, much less their horns, and that automotive engineers would do well to consult with the deaf community while designing sound alerting systems for electric vehicles. 

The text of Vasishta’s letter appears below.

Sounds of Silence

I read with great interest John Seabrook’s article about making sounds for electric vehicles, or E.V.s (“On Alert,” August 8th). Although I learned much about how these soundscapes are made, I was disappointed that Seabrook did not mention the deaf and hard-of-hearing communities. The million deaf people in the U.S. typically cannot hear internal-combustion-engine vehicles, or even their horns—yet we manage to survive! Silent E.V.s put the public in the same precarious situation that deaf people have been in since the automobile was invented. Perhaps our perspectives, and the skills we’ve developed to protect our lives, could usefully inform the work of those thinking about the future of E.V.s—as well as heighten the awareness of anyone encountering these cars.

Madan Vasishta

Ellicott City, Md.

Daniel Durant, E-’15, is on Season 31 of Dancing With the Stars. He is paired with the professional dance Britt Stewart. They have made it through the first two weeks of the competition, which streams on Disney+. The next episode is on Monday, October 3.

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