Terence Thomas '18
An aspiring orthopedic surgeon and recent graduate was recently awarded a fellowship that will support his work in rehabilitation for stroke victims.
Terence Thomas ’18, BS Biology, received the 2018 American Heart Association (AHA) Founders Affiliate Undergraduate Student Summer Fellowship to support his work on the Gait Propulsion Trainer (GPT). Named June 2018’s URECA Researcher of the Month, Terence conducts research under the mentorship of Dr. Erin Vasudevan, Department of Neurobiology & Behavior, in the Rehabilitation Research and Movement Performance/RRAMP Laboratory,
GPT is a novel rehabilitation device for people with hemiparesis due to stroke. At this past April’s annual URECA symposium, Terence presented a poster on the preliminary phase of the project, which aimed to test proof-of-concept of the GPT in healthy young adults before commencing testing in people with stroke.
With an academic background and interests in exercise science and kinesiology, Terence describes the research he conducts as “the perfect opportunity” for him, and being involved in research under the guidance of Dr. Vasudevan has also helped him develop his skills in MATLAB programming and data analysis.
“It was something that fit exactly with my personality, fit with what I wanted to do …If I was in a different lab, I might not have had the opportunity to get an AHA fellowship, or to present at URECA,” Terence said of his work with Dr. Vasudevan. “Her lab was a place where I’m able to really grow.”
Terence transferred to the College of Arts and Sciences at Stony Brook in Spring 2016 from The College at Brockport, State University of New York, where he was a member of the basketball team. Since coming to Stony Brook, he’s done physician shadowing for two summers and has collaborated on shoulder tendinitis research with Dr. Lawrence Gulotta, an orthopedic surgeon at the Hospital for Special Surgery, New York City. He’s also co-authoring a chapter, “Rotator Cuff Pathology ,” in Management of Tendinopathy: Non-operative and Operative Management (in press , Springer Publishing).
A certified personal trainer and strength coach, Terence maintains a relationship with his high school alma mater, Connetquot High School in Bohemia, NY, as a coach, trainer and mentor of the varsity basketball team. He has been involved as vice president and public relations coordinator for the Stony Brook Pre-Medical Society, is a member of Neuroscience Axis, and volunteers for Fit Kids for Life, a Stony Brook University Medicine and Physical Therapy program that helps promote exercise and a healthy lifestyle for children and teens.
Learn more about Terence through excerpts of his interview with Karen Kernan, URECA Director.