Dr. Gabrielle Merchant
Gabrielle Merchant AuD, PhD (Entered MIT 2009, Graduated June 2014)
With a background in speech and hearing science and research training from Dr. Heidi Nakajima at MEE, Dr. Merchant’s dissertation used measurements in both patients and fresh human cadaveric specimens to develop non-invasive diagnostic methods to differentiate between various conductive hearing pathologies. She was recognized for her outstanding research with the MIT Helen Carr Peake award. After graduating from SHBT, Dr. Merchant continued her training in the AuD Program at UMass Amherst, earning her AuD in 2018. During her AuD studies, she was also active in teaching and research, expanding her research to include studies of auditory perception with Dr. Karen Helfer and Dr. Richard Freyman. She is now the Director of the Translational Auditory Physiology and Perception Laboratory at Boys Town National Research Hospital. Her primary line of work, funded through an NIH NIGMS COBRE grant, is focused on improving the differential diagnosis of otitis media in children. Dr. Merchant is also the Principal Investigator of a Department of Defense Hearing Restoration Research Award for developing a miniature, easy-to-use device for early diagnosis and monitoring of noise-induced hearing loss and traumatic middle-ear injury. She was awarded an NIH NIDCD Loan Repayment Award in 2018 and the Journal of the American Academy of Audiology Editor’s Award in 2019.