Testimonial Sebastiaan Ram

Foto van Sebastiaan in Spanje
The whole process was really well organised. I could do my own thing, with good supervision.
Sebastiaan Ram

Sebastiaan, Master's student in Artificial Intelligence and Data Science, knew that he wanted to spend some months abroad during his study programme. When he came across the Beyond the Frontiers honours programme, the experience abroad piqued his interest straight away. With the help of his supervisor at the university, labs in various countries were approached, including Canada, Denmark and Spain. 'In Spain, they were working on a subject I find really interesting; how dementia develops.'

It turned out to be possible to do the research internship of his Master's abroad, and to extend it with the honours programme, allowing Sebastiaan to do a five-month internship at the Computational Intelligence Group at the Technical University of Madrid.  In those five months, Sebastaan worked on models that can predict the onset of Mild Cognitive Impairment (MCI), the main indicator of the development of dementia. Sebastiaan tells us about his research: 'Dementia is extremely difficult to prevent, but it's possible, with the help of statistical models, to look at whether changes can be made in a person's lifestyle that reduce the risks. Being able to extend my internship through the Radboud Honours Academy, I was able to develop and expand a risk analysis model that we can use to make predictions too. This model can ultimately be put into practice.'

Besides spending a lot of time at the office, with the professors and colleagues in Madrid, there was also enough free time. Sebastiaan: 'I was staying in a really international house, so we were all in the same position. Outside the internship, your diary is suddenly empty, so you can plan all sorts of things together. I filled my free time with nice outings to many different places - Porto, Lisbon, Valencia, Bilbao and the south of Spain.'

Sebastiaan is now back from Madrid, but the project is still running. Sebastiaan: 'The research group in Madrid is really motivated and keen to really understand dementia. I want to publish the whole research, together with the professors, in a scientific paper. I've already submitted it for a poster presentation at the Alzheimer's disease conference in Amsterdam.'