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Academic Experience


Ph.D. Candidate in Biomedical Engineering, Johns Hopkins School of Medicine

August 2015 - Present

See links for details on research.

  • Achievement Reward for College Scientists (ARCS) Scholar (2017-2019)

  • L'Oréal USA For Women in Science Program's Changing the Face of STEM (CTFS) Mentoring Grant recipient (2017-2020)

  • The George M.L. Sommerman Engineering Graduate Teaching Assistant Award Finalist (2018)

  • NSF Graduate Research Fellowship Program (GRFP) Honorable Mention (2017)

Bachelor of Science in Honors Mathematics and Physical Science

August 2011 - May 2015

Summa Cum Laude, Dana Scholar, Dean’s List, Pi Mu Epsilon, Phi Beta Kappa, Sigma Pi Sigma

  • Barry M. Goldwater Scholarship 2014 Honorable Mention

  • Novartis Endowed Science Scholars Program Award​

  • The Robert W. and Edythe M. Mull Award for Excellence in Mathematics

  • The Wesley S. Mitman Mathematical Prize

Associate of Science in General Science, Raritan Valley Community College

August 2008 - May 2011

Magna Cum Laude, Dean’s List, Phi Theta Kappa

About Me

Macauley Breault received a B.S. degree in honors mathematics and physical science from Muhlenberg College, Allentown PA, in 2015. She is now a Ph.D. candidate in Biomedical Engineering at Johns Hopkins University, Baltimore MD. Her research interests include brain-machine interfaces, sensorimotor control, and chronic pain. This work involves constructing decoding models and identifying neural correlates between brain and behavior. She is a second consecutive winner of the Achievement Reward for College Scientists (ARCS) Scholarship as well as a second consecutive recipient of the L’Oréal USE for Women in Science “Changing the Face of STEM” grant used to fund her annual outreach event for local Girl Scouts in Baltimore.

When not working, Macauley enjoys spending time with her dog (pictured) and cat, hiking, snowboarding, horseback riding, gardening, and cooking. Her favorite meal to make is carbonara.


Research Experience

March 2016 - Present

Ph.D. Candidate, Johns Hopkins University

Dissertation: The effect of internal states that affect brain and movement

Advisor: Sridevi Sarma

Committee: Amy Bastian, Vikram Chib, Kathleen Cullen

October 2015 - March 2016

Rotation project, Johns Hopkins University

  • Worked on a collaborative project between Noah Cowan and James Knierim recording place cells in the hippocampus of rats during active locomotion in a virtual reality dome.

  • Designed an algorithm and accompanying GUI to extract firing fields from recorded place cells using an initial self-estimation with the capability to manually edit fields and parameters during post-processing data analysis.

  • Trained rats to perform a task within a virtual reality dome and desensitized intimidating environment.

  • Assembled a 48-channel hyperdrive to enable hippocampal recordings.

  • Assisted in surgically implanting my neural recording device into a rat, which collected indispensable data over multiple months and experiments and results in a

    Nature paper.

June 2014 - August 2014

Robotics Institute Summer Scholar, Carnegie Mellon University

  • Worked under Cameron Riviere in The Robotics Institute

  • Integrated force control into a parallel-wire manipulator robot for minimally invasive genre therapy heart procedures.

  • Developed hybrid force/position control architecture using C++, Java, and Arduino and control theory.

  • Derived and implemented an optimal tension distribution technique to overcome the actuation redundancy for safety implementation (in MATLAB).

  • Instrumented force sensors for an auto-calibration procedure to calculate robot geometry necessary for position accuracy in situ.

  • Presented at RISS 2015 Poster session and published by RISS working journal.

  • Published in multiple conference proceedings.

May 2013 - August 2013

NSF REU Summer Scholar, Lehigh University

  • Worked under Himanshu Jain in the International Materials Institute for New Functionality in Glass

  • Launched research into the development of an injectable form of bioactive glass for minimally invasive clinical application.

  • Evaluated literature and proposed various options for delivery.

  • Designed and conducted an initial exploration of novel composition.


Work Experience

June 2015 - August 2015

Associate Engineer, Prosidyan Inc.

  • Conducted original research related to bioactive glass and calcium phosphate cement at a startup company.

  • Experienced researcher life in industry.

  • Assisted and participated in the FDA inspection process undergone by the company.

January 2014 - May 2014

Intern, Hanger Clinic

  • Interacted with patients who required prosthetic and orthotic devices.

  • Assisted in the assembly of medical devices.






Research Gallery

Figures that have appeared in my recent publications.


Graphic Design

When I am not researching, I exercise my creativity in graphic designs, which have been featured in various outlets across Johns Hopkins University including organizations and labs. I have made my research-related images publically available on SciDraw.


Contact Me

Thank you for reviewing my website. Follow the links below to find out more about me. Please feel free to contact me.

Baltimore, MD 21210

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