Alison Cernich, Ph.D., graduated from Loyola in 1997 and received her doctoral degree from Fairleigh Dickinson University (FDU) in 2002. While at FDU, she received an intramural grant from the University, the Michael Fink Fellowship, to support her work in disability-related research. She completed a pre-doctoral research fellowship at the Kessler Medical Rehabilitation Research & Education Corporation, funded by the National Institutes of Disability and Rehabilitation Research (NIDRR), in medical outcomes research in the rehabilitation setting. She then completed a pre-doctoral clinical internship at the Baltimore VA Medical Center (BVAMC). Following her internship, she completed a post-doctoral fellowship in cognitive neurosciences at the National Rehabilitation Hospital (NRH) in Washington, DC. She coordinated a multi-site research study of concussion in high school athletes funded by the Department of Defense and worked as a primary and contributing author on 6 peer-reviewed articles in collaboration with colleagues at NRH and at the Defense and Veterans Brain Injury Center.
Alison is currently the Director of Neuropsychology in the Mental Health Clinical Center (MHCC) at the VA Maryland Health Care System and serves as the Program Manager for the multidisciplinary Polytrauma Support Clinic Team. She is an Assistant Professor of Neurology at the University of Maryland School of Medicine. She is the Co-Director for the Integrated Psychology Post-Doctoral Fellowship Program in Traumatic Brain Injury and Posttraumatic Stress Disorder in partnership with Dr. Sushma Roberts. Dr. Cernich received an Advanced Career Development Award from the VA Rehabilitation Research & Development Service to support her research work in the effect of aerobic exercise on cognition in patients diagnosed with hemiparetic stroke. She also works in conjunction with other investigators in the Maryland Exercise and Robotics Center of Excellence (MERCE) to examine the effects of cognitive function on a home exercise intervention, on robotic interventions for range of motion and motor learning, and on functional imaging protocols. She also contributes to research in the Neuropsychology department in the areas of Depleted Uranium health monitoring, Multiple Sclerosis, mild head injury, and Parkinson’s disease. She is the lead or contributing author on 10 peer-reviewed articles and has multiple conference presentations.