Concussions Researcher Wins 'Genius Grant'

Among 22 winners of $500,000, no-strings-attached awards announced Sept. 20 by the John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation was Kevin Guskiewicz, who has focused his research on sports-related concussions.

This year's MacArthur Fellows were announced Sept. 20, with a cellist, a radio producer, a jazz percussionist/composer, and two poets included among the 22 suddenly famous names. Each of them will get $500,000 in no-strings-attached support during the next five years from the John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation.

One of them is Kevin Guskiewicz, the Kenan Distinguished Professor and chair of the department of exercise and sport science at the University of North Carolina Chapel Hill's College of Arts and Sciences. He also is co-director of the Matthew Gfeller Sport-Related Traumatic Brain Injury Research Center and research director for the Center for the Study of Retired Athletes.

Guskiewicz researches sports-related concussions, focusing on repeated, sub-threshold brain impacts, according to the foundation and the university. "Kevin Guskiewicz is a wonderful example of how a faculty member's innovative research -– both in the lab and in the field -– advances knowledge that saves lives," said UNC Chancellor Holden Thorp. "He has become one of the go-to experts in America when it comes to the widespread problem of sports-related concussions. We are thrilled and proud that the MacArthur Foundation has selected him for such important recognition."

Guskiewicz helped write concussion guidelines that are recommended by the National Athletic Trainers Association and the American College of Sports Medicine. He has worked with retired NFL players and current college players, documenting through his work with NFL veterans that there is a high correlation between those who have suffered multiple concussions in their careers and the early onset depression and dementia after retirement.

"We have an amazing interdisciplinary research team at UNC, and the MacArthur Fellowship will help us to expand our work into developing injury prevention strategies and rehabilitation protocols for concussion that can help to preserve sports as we know it today," Guskiewicz said in the university's news release about the award.

It said Guskiewicz has received 20 funded research grants and has published more than 90 journal articles and seven textbook chapters related to sports concussions. In 2010, he was named to the NCAA's concussion committee and the NFL's head, neck and spine committee.

Download Center

  • Lone Worker Safety Guide

    As organizations digitalize and remote operations become more commonplace, the number of lone workers is on the rise. These employees are at increased risk for unaddressed workplace accidents or emergencies. This guide was created to help employers better understand common lone worker risks and solutions for lone worker risk mitigation and incident prevention.

  • Online Safety Training Buyer's Guide

    Use this handy buyer's guide to learn the basics of selecting online safety training and how to use it at your workplace.

  • COVID Return-to-Work Checklist, Fall 2021

    Use this checklist as an aid to help your organization return to work during the COVID-19 pandemic in a safe and healthy manner.

  • SDS Buyer's Guide

    Learn to make informed decisions while searching for SDS Management Software.

  • Risk Matrix Guide

    Risk matrices come in many different shapes and sizes. Understanding the components of a risk matrix will allow you and your organization to manage risk effectively.

  • Industry Safe

Featured Whitepapers

OH&S Digital Edition

  • OHS Magazine Digital Edition - November December 2021

    November December 2021

    Featuring:

    • GAS DETECTION
      How to Streamline Gas Detector Maintenance
    • OSHA TOP 10
      OSHA's Top 10 Most Frequently Cited Standards for FY 2021
    • PROTECTIVE APPAREL
      How PPE Can Help You Deal with the Harsh Condition of Winter
    • HEARING PROTECTION
      Tackling Hearing Protection in the Workplace
    View This Issue