Michelle Harris Love, PT, PhD


Associate Professor
George Mason University
MedStar National Rehabilitation Hospital

Getting to know Dr. Harris-Love...

Q: Who had the greatest influence on you during your childhood?
A: I was also influenced by some close friends of our family, who were also a farm family. The father had polio as a child and used leg braces and crutches to get around – managing to swing on and off of tractors and in between cattle and out across the fields. When their children were young, the mom of the family fell while picking apples and sustained a spinal cord injury that resulted in paralysis from the waist down. Over the subsequent decades, I watched them raise their kids and run their farm, and they inspired me.  They often spoke of the rehab professionals who gave them the tools they needed to make it work.

Q: Do you have children?
A: I have a 10-year-old son, Isaiah.

Q: Do you have pets?
A: A dog and 2 turtles.

Q: What is your favorite book?
A: Gilead, by Marilynne Robinson

Q: What factors influenced your career choice?
A: When I was a kid I thought I wanted to be a vet. One day I “shadowed” our local vet and watched him spay a cat
– and that was the end of that.

Q: What is your favorite thing about your career?
A: The fact that our focus is always on how to improve the lives of people who have disabling health conditions.

Q: Share a few personal facts that most people would not know about you.
A: I saw Prince in concert, about a year before his death. I grew up on a farm in Minnesota. 

Q: Last but not least:
A: I’m a die-hard Vikings fan (which is the only kind of Vikings fan there is)

Dr. Michelle Harris-Love is interested in investigating the mechanisms and modulation of post-stroke motor recovery using non-invasive brain stimulation.  She is particularly interested in the recovery of reaching movements in severely impaired patients who lack hand function.

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