Published On: Wed, Nov 12th, 2014

Curaçaoan doing great work abroad

1457737_10201433959384924_1711547261_nInti Brazil was born on December 22nd 1982 on Curaçao. For most of his childhood he attended Kolegio Erasmo, the only school on the island to teach in the local language Papiamentu and according to the basic principles of the humanist movement. He spent the last two years of elementary school at the M.M. Römerschool. After that he went to the Radulphus Colleges and he got his VWO (Higher Scientific Secondary Education) diploma in 2001. That year he moved to the Netherlands to study psychology at Leiden University.

After obtaining his Master’s degree in cognitive psychology in 2005, he worked as a junior researcher and policy officer at the Pompekliniek, a forensic psychiatric center (TBS-clinic) in Nijmegen. He also held a formal appointment at the department of psychiatry of the Radboud University Medical Center during this period. After spending the first few years setting up an EEG lab in the Pompekliniek to record electrical brain activity in offenders with TBS, he was successful at obtaining the NWO Mosaic grant in 2009 (€200.000). This grant was intended to stimulate the participation of talented non-native individuals in academia by funding a PhD studentship. For his PhD project he moved to the Department of Neuropsychology & Rehabilitation psychology at the Radboud University but also continued working as a researcher in the Pompekliniek.

His project was focused on investigating the electrophysiological correlates of performance monitoring in psychopathy. That is, he measured brain activity in offenders with psychopathy in order to understand how their brain works and whether their brain process information differently. He focused specifically on brain activity signaling that a change of behavior is necessary, because these patients are known to be difficult to treat due to their inability to let go of their destructive behavioral tendencies. In 2011, halfway through the project, he received the Koningsheide award, a prestigious prize for outstanding and innovative contribution to Dutch forensic psychiatry. During the last 2 years of his PhD project he had the opportunity to be a collaborator on various national and international projects.

In May 2013 he started working as an assistant professor at the Radboud University in Nijmegen. On the 14th of November 2013 he received his PhD-degree with the distinction Cum Laude, a prestigious and rare distinction given to less than 5% of those who have obtained a doctorate.

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