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Ms Elise Ajay

Following an undergraduate degree in electrical engineering and biomedical science, Elise Ajay’s passion for music and her keen interest in the field of prosthetics led her to undertaking her PhD working with the Bionics Institute’s hearing team in optogenetics.

Their project investigates how a combination of electricity and light stimulation could improve sound and enjoyment of music for people with a cochlear implant.

Elise’s talent and passion for the future of bionic hearing was quickly recognised as she won the national 2021 Pitch It Clever competition, which challenges young researchers to create a short video pitch explaining why their research matters.

She attributes this impressive start to her hearing research career in part to her time spent at the Bionics Institute.

‘Bionics Institute is a really conducive environment to research collaboration and learning. The tools, the resources, the training, the support, the environment, all of them are what makes this project possible and help makes me successful.’

Looking to the future, Elise still has a couple of years before completing her PhD but sees herself continuing in the field of research as there are so many different paths that enable her to continue her prosthetics and biomedical engineering interests.

‘There’s a lot of different things that I want to pursue. Technology is quickly advancing, so we’ll see where it ends up, so that we’re hopefully making a positive impact on people’s lives.’

I thought, wow, that would be amazing if you could really help people to hear and enjoy music for those who have lost it or introduced it to people who have never had it. Elise Ajay

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