Lace M.K. Padilla

2017/2018 NSF STEM Ambassador
Ph.d. Candidate: university of utah

Cognitive Neuroscience

Lace M.K. Padilla

Ph.D. Student
University of Utah, Cognitive Neuroscience
Advisor, Sarah Creem-Regehr

I am a graduate student in Cognitive Neural Science at the University of Utah. I work in an interdisciplinary Visual Perception and Spatial Cognition perception research group ran by Sarah H. Creem-Regehr, Jeanine K. Stefanucci and William B. Thompson.

My research focuses on visual perception and includes decision-making influenced by visualizations and spatial cognition of underrepresented populations. I work collaboratively with visualization scientists, geographers, and anthropologists.

NSF funded projects: Uncertainty Visualization Project, Spatial Cognition and Navigation (SCAN) Project

In my spare time, I am a strong advocate for minorities in STEM. The National Science Foundation appointed me as their 2017/2018 STEM ambassador for my outreach work with underrepresented students in STEM. I founded the Diversity Graduate School Application Advisory, which helps underrepresented undergraduate students—specifically female, minority, LGBTQ, non-US citizens, and differently-abled students—apply for graduate school. For my diversity in STEM work, I have received the Martin Harris Hiatt Memorial Graduate Fellowship, For Underrepresented Populations and the Clayton Fellowship, For Excellence In Research with Underrepresented Populations.

  • Masters of Science | University of Utah, Salt Lake City, UT. [08.2015]
  • 2015 Summer Institute in Cognitive Neuroscience, UCSB, CA. [08.2015]
  • International Spatial Cognition Summer Institute, UCSB, CA. [08.2013]
  • Masters of Fine Art | University of Utah, Salt Lake City, UT. [05.2013]
  • Bachelors of Fine Art | Pacific Northwest College of Art, Portland, OR. [05.2009]




HCI Consulting

Leverage cutting-edge neuroscience to optimize
visualizations, games, websites, and apps.

Successful visualizations are rememberable, informative, and can inspire. Modern research in Cognitive Neuroscience provides insights on how to ensure your products are providing the best experience for users. HCI visualization consulting involves creating user testing methods, statistical analysis of user performance and recommendations for optimization.