Phone: 208-885-6111
Toll-free: 88-88-UIDAHO
Fax: 208-885-9119
Student Union Building
875 Perimeter Drive MS 4264
Moscow, ID 83844-4264


Phone: 208-334-2999
Fax: 208-364-4035
322 E. Front Street
Boise, ID 83702


Coeur d'Alene

Phone: 208-667-2588
Toll-free: 888-208-2268
Fax: 208-664-1272
1031 N. Academic Way,
Suite 242
Coeur d'Alene, ID 83814


Idaho Falls

Phone: 208-282-7900
Fax: 208-282-7929
1776 Science Center Drive, Suite 306
Idaho Falls, ID 83402


Graduate student collecting data

Richard Hill

As a third grader, Richard Hill kept a list of diseases, their symptoms, causes and possible cures, folded neatly in his back pocket. As a University of Idaho graduate student in neuroscience, he hopes to help the scientific and medical community work down a similar list, erasing those diseases affecting the brain.

Hill is particularly focused on helping to find a cure for multiple sclerosis, which has afflicted his sister, Lynn, and an estimated one million others in the U.S. alone.

Hill currently is investigating some of the brain's chemical and electrical processes to gain insights into the disease.

"My research in computational neuroscience is basically writing algorithms that model how the brain works," he explains. Algorithms are succinctly defined mathematical instructions for accomplishing specific tasks, which are implemented by computer code.

"If you set up a model that aids in predicting how the brain works, you can also understand how diseases work," says Hill.

"For almost a decade now, I have watched what MS has done to my sister's central nervous system. As an electrical engineer and professional software developer, I visualize adjustments and enhancements to her biological system that could help with her deficiencies," he says.

Hill works closely with Professor Richard Wells, Director of the Neuroscience Graduate Program. One-on-one contact with professors is an everyday occurrence, and Richard chose Idaho for its attention to students.

At the University of Idaho, "Professors care about students," Richard says. "It's an ideal place."