Wilkes-Barre, Luzerne County — Wilkes University senior psychology major Evelyn Cabrera was wired up Thursday to work on relaxation inside the campus’ newest addition: the NeuroTraining and Research Center. With visual stimuli, she tried to shake the stress and sharpen her focus. “It just made me so relaxed the first time and it, like, drained the energy out of me.”
The center also includes an audio visual entrainment room that provides the user goggles with flashing lights and headsets that emit a repetition of tones — all to train the brain to achieve less stress, more focus and an overall greater sense of calm. Center Co-Director Dr. Ed Schicatano said, “We drive the brain into these different states. 20 minutes is all it takes.”
The center is much more than a place for students and faculty to become calm. They will use the center as part of the school’s interdisciplinary neuroscience major. Students will complete internships there while psychology and neuroscience majors will use it for research. Wilkes senior Neuroscience and Psychology major Jaclyn Gallick said, “It’s just really beneficial in that way. We can do research and just have our internship here to learn so much more.”
The Wilkes NeuroTraining and Research Center may help students lose more than just the day to day stress. They may also shed the one that comes with trying to find a career in this field. Wilkes senior neuroscience major Melanie Rivera said, “This opened up a whole new world of opportunity. I didn’t know that this was a branch of neuroscience.” Center Co-Director Dr. Bob Bohlander added, “To be able to achieve their goals of stress management, stress reduction, better focus and so on so it’s a tremendous asset.”
Wilkes University’s NeuroTraining and Research Center is now open weekly Monday through Friday.