Christopher Giardina, an MD/Ph.D. student in the School of Medicine, has won a 2015 Graduate Education Advancement Board Impact Award for his work with cochlear implants. Giardina, along with faculty members Oliver Adunka and Douglas Fitzpatrick, has designed surgical tools meant to detect cochlear trauma at the time of implantation. A three-step process is used to apply the tools during the cochlear implant procedure. An auditory tone is directed into the ear, the hair cells and auditory nerve fibers respond to the tone, and the tools record the response. Findings indicate that cochlear responses to tones can represent even a very small degree of damage to hair cells and nerve fibers. These surgical tools can help surgeons recognize trauma and adapt their technique to minimize further trauma during surgery. Chris was also recognized in a recent School of Medicine’s Vital Signs post. Congratulations from BME!