Sabina Brennan (PhD) is a research psychologist affiliated with the School of Psychology, Trinity College Dublin. She is a principal investigator at Trinity College Institute of Neuroscience (TCIN) and the ADAPT Centre, TCD.
She currently co-directs the NEIL (Neuro-Enhancement for Independent Lives) Programme in TCIN where her research focuses on understanding dementia risk and protective factors and how we might promote brain health across the lifespan and prevent dementia or change the trajectory of the disease.
She left school at 16 (with her leaving cert) and worked in Irish Life Assurance Company for 15 years. She completed a teacher’s diploma with the Guildhall School of Music and Drama and left the ‘day job’ to work as a drama teacher and pursue a career as a filmmaker and actor. After playing Tess Halpin in 160 episodes of Fair City she attended university as a mature student coming 1st in her class and graduating with a first class honours degree in psychology in 2007. In the same year she was awarded a Government of Ireland Scholarship (Irish Research Council for Science Engineering and Technology ) to complete a PhD in TCD.
She completed her PhD in 2010 and in 2012 was promoted to Research Assistant Professor after one year as a research fellow.
She believes in empowerment through education has secured millions of euro in funding to conduct research and to educational materials including animations, websites, and apps.
All of the materials that she has develops are freely available online. Her animated films have been viewed in more than 140 countries, have been translated into several languages and are used for training and education by healthcare professionals and advocacy organisations on four continents.
She is a passionate public speaker and believes that science is for sharing.