PGY 5: Nicholas Lynch
Nick was born in a small town in Maine. He received his undergraduate degree from the University of Maine and his medical diploma from Cornell, NYC. Then he moved on to Mount Sinai, where he is currently enjoying treating such diverse patients as a one second old baby girl in the delivery room, and a 93 year old man in the psych ER. He believes that there is never a dull moment in the Triple Board program at Sinai. Nick likes to play guitar, read books, do The Times crossword. He plays a serviceable first base for his softball team and loves to argue about anything and everything. He lives with his incredible fiancé, Ania, with whom he just bought a house in Brooklyn.
Why Triple Board? Why on Earth would someone want to do Triple Board? That's a good question, for sure - one that I don’t think has any single correct answer. Many feel that one requires an extensive knowledge of normal childhood development in order to practice child psychiatry. Some people can't decide between pediatrics and psychiatry, and rather than flipping a coin, decide that they will train in both disciplines. Personally, I don't think the actual reason is terribly important, but what is tremendously important is that one thinks long and hard about the decision to pursue training in the Triple Board Program, because it is a unique and arduous journey, and it truly needs to be the correct decision for you. You are pulled in many directions at the same time, all the time. It is a difficult trip for sure, but for me, the rewards vastly outweigh the tribulations, and it's a decision I would make again in an instant.
Advice for interviewees: Be serious - Be yourself, because people will probably like you, but they probably won't like not you.
PGY 5: Paul Mitrani
Paul attended Binghamton University where he earned degrees in Biochemistry, Psychobiology, and Philosophy. After a year doing Alzheimer's research at NYU, Paul trekked up to Buffalo University where he was accepted into the MD/PhD program. While there, he completed his PhD in Biochemistry after studying the effects of early nutrition on metabolic programming of obesity and metabolic syndrome. Paul was then fortunate to be offered a spot at the Mount Sinai Triple Board Program, where he has the amazing opportunity to combine his love of the medical complexities of pediatrics and interpersonal interactions in psychiatry. Now, he lives in Queens with his wonderful wife, Katie, and two super awesome sons, Jack and Sam, where they make comic books and pretend to be superheroes.
Why triple board? This program is ideal for someone who wants to embrace the clinical skills of pediatrics with the emotional and cognitive awareness of psychiatry.
Advice for interviewees: Understand what you like about each aspect of the program and think about how you would like to integrate them in your professional life.
PGY 4: Molly MacGregor
Molly grew up outside Philadelphia. She went to Wesleyan University where she majored in Psychology. As a sophomore, she was accepted to medical school at Mount Sinai through the Humanities and Medicine Program. This allowed her to pursue other educational opportunities during college like working on an organic farm in Italy and living in a monastery in India while studying Buddhism. After graduation, she spent a year traveling and working in outdoor education. In 2005, she started medical school with plans to become an OB/Gyn. However, as part of a first year elective, she was lucky enough to be part of the Beatrix Hamburg Medical Student Training Fellowship in Child and Adolescent Psychiatry sponsored by the Klingenstein third Generation Foundation at Mount Sinai. This experience, along with third year clerkships, played a big role in her eventual decision to apply to Triple Board.
Why Triple Board? I realized that working with kids (no matter how hard I was working), would always make me happy. As a medical student, Child Psychiatry patients were my favorite. As far as I can tell, the line separating a "psychiatric approach" and a "medical approach" is arbitrary. I don't want to miss out on anything.
Advice for interviewees: People will tell you "just go with your gut feeling" This is excellent advice, as long as you have a gut feeling. But if you don't, it's okay. I didn't either. You'll still make a great decision!
PGY 4: Rishi Sood
Rishi grew up and completed both his undergraduate education and medical training in Richmond, Virginia. From a very young age he was intrigued by the disparity which existed amongst social classes. While traveling abroad to his ancestral land of India, he would see the tragic circumstances that many children his own age faced: living in slums, begging for money to contribute to a family's welfare and a lack of formal education. He could not understand how a society so rich in culture and wisdom could allow its own people to struggle. His desire to work with others to affect change led to his decision to pursue medicine as a career. Understanding that he enjoyed working with children, the decision to explore triple board programs seemed natural. He decided to do a Child Psychiatry elective at Mount Sinai. Under excellent guidance, he was exposed to a brand of medicine that seemed innovative in its systems of care approach to patient care. Working in the heart of Manhattan amo ngst people from all strata strengthened a resolve to pursue a program that would enhance his ability to work with the entire child suffering emotionally and physically.
Why Triple Board? Through training in triple board the opportunities to contribute to the overall well being of children in a holistic way are endless. Whether he works in the US or abroad, Rishi hopes to help educate and advocate for under-served communities. Ten years from now he envisions himself working in the slums of Delhi and in rural communities within the U.S. to improve health care and education.
Advice for interviewees: There is so much work to be done and I encourage you to not lose the idealism that brought you into medicine. Feel free to contact any one of us if you are considering the program.
PGY 3: Milana Mor
Milana did her undergraduate training at Vassar College and received her medical diploma from the University of Buffalo State University of New York. She comes to the program with numerous academic achievements, having been awarded the Dean’s Letter of Commendation twice during her medical school career, the recipient of the Gilbert M. Beck Memorial Prize in Psychiatry for Academic Excellence and named to Alpha Omega Alpha. After spending six years performing psychiatric and neurological research at Columbia University and Beth Israel Medical Center, her efforts have resulted in two publications and numerous poster presentations. Milana will have already completed a preliminary year in pediatric residency at Geisinger Medical Center when she begins the Triple Board Program here at Mount Sinai. She is also interested in international humanitarian projects for personal reasons as well as having spent time in Ecuador performing pediatric exams. Milana’s extracurricular interests include traveling and playing the piano which she has done since the age of 5.
Why triple board? As a future child psychiatrist, I would like to have a solid understanding of child development and the diagnostic skills of a pediatrician and the cognitive prowess and sensitivity of a psychiatrist.
Advice for interviewees: I think it is important to have a general sense of what you would like to achieve by completing a triple board residency program. This knowledge will help you to choose a program that is best suited for you.
PGY 3: Anupriya Srivastava
Priya received her undergraduate degree from Tufts University, her post baccalaureate pre-med at Harvard University and went to medical school at the University of Mississippi. Priya worked briefly as a market research analyst before deciding to pursue a career in medicine having become fascinated by the workings of the mind and body during college. She was selected as a member of the Jeanette D. Pullen Chapter of the Gold Humanism Honor Society due to her excellence in the areas of patient care, compassion and dedication to service. During medical school, she has worked on research examining how (pediatric patients with sickle cell anemia) might be impacted by the transfer to an adult hematology-oncology clinic. This research has resulted in a paper that has been submitted for publication. Priya has also had an active role in organizing community service projects for her medical school class, co-leading the Ethics Committee during her second year of medical school, and fundraising for the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society in Jackson. In addition to these accomplishments, she also runs ½ marathons and wrote reviews of various restaurants for MURMUR, University of Mississippi Medical Center’s student-run publication.
Why Triple Board? I have always had an interest in human behavior, for as long as I can remember. I went into medical school with an open-mind, but definitely strongly considering a career in the field of psychiatry. I did not realize how much I enjoyed working with the pediatric population until my 3rd year clinical rotations in the children’s hospital. It was then I realized that my personality is suited for kids as they bring out the best in me. It was also then that I truly found my “calling” in medicine and knew that working with children was what I was always meant to do. So, here comes the dilemma known to most triple boarders- should I pursue a career in child psychiatry, pediatrics, or both?
Faced with all these questions, I decided to do a month away at a triple board program. Coming from Mississippi, I had no exposure to other triple boarders and I had never done a child psychiatry month. After doing a sub-internship at a triple board program, I knew this particular residency program was the way to go- it is a program that covers all of my career interests and gives me the exposure to all of the patient populations I want to work with in the future.
Advice for interviewees: Explore, explore, explore before the interview process. Do not use the interview process as a way to figure out what you want. Have a general sense of what you want to get out of residency and what you want to do post-residency. I think programs want people who are genuinely committed to both pediatrics and psychiatry and who have an idea of how they are going to integrate both during their careers.
PGY 2: Deepak Penesetti
Deepak was born in Queens, New York. After high school, he joined the BA/MD program at New York University, and pursued concentrations in Biology and Economics. Deepak has always been intrigued with projects designed to affect communities. In college, he created a tutoring service, conducted research for Malaria vaccine development, and lead an initiative to provide internet access to rural schools in India. However, it wasn't until after his 2nd year of medical school when completing a research fellowship at the New York University Child Study Center that he discovered his fascination for Cognitive Neuroscience. He became particularly interested in Learning Differences and went on to study the neurological reading network via fMRI analysis to better discern the Dyslexic brain. This sparked his interest in the applications of cognitive principles for education. Inspired, Deepak co-founded Imagine Health, a non-profit organization, which produces ‘videos and apps’, geared to help educate patients and assist providers. Deepak joins the Mount Sinai Triple Board program excited for the one-of-a-kind synergy of training experiences. He loves film, is glued to HGTV whenever possible, and has been known to not shy away from the dance floor.
Why Triple Board? I’ve always admired how school teachers, nannies, and anyone who spends a great deal of time working with children has an intuitive sense of what is typical versus atypical. I think training in Pediatrics with a full spectrum of children will help calibrate my ability to evaluate, understand and manage those who require intervention, especially psychiatric. Also, as childcare providers we have the responsibility to be advocates. Mental health care often suffers from stigma and resistance, particularly abroad. By being able to switch ‘hats’ between pediatrician and psychiatrist I hope to advocate with greater impact.
Advice for interviewees: Will the pursuit of three specialties serve your career goals better than pursuing Pediatrics or Psychiatry alone? When evaluating programs, it is easy to get swept away with weighing too many variables; I would suggest asking yourself what factors are really most important to you and allow these to lead your decision-making.
PGY 2: Thuc Phan
Thuc has lived most of his life in Texas. He received a bachelor degree in Computer Engineering and a master degree in Electrical Engineering at the University of Houston. He worked for a couple of years in Information Technology in San Antonio before deciding to pursue a career in medicine. Thuc began medical school with the goal of becoming a Radiation Oncologist. He did research in scanning beam proton therapy and presented a poster. However, beginning with clinical rotations, he realized that the rotations he enjoyed the most were Pediatrics and Psychiatry. He was subsequently introduced to the Triple Board program. Thuc’s extracurricular activities included creating lecture notes and study materials for fellow students, dressing up as a clown to put smiles on the faces of the patients in the pediatric ward, and teaching classmates Latin and ballroom dancing. He participated in the medical school’s Internet Use Committee and created the website Sparkcards.com as a learning resources for medical students.
Why Triple Board? Some much of a child’s physical well being is related the child’s emotional and psychological state. I like the idea of being about to treat the whole child.
Advice for interviewees: This will be one of the biggest decisions in your life. Be honest with yourself and what you want out of this experience.
PGY1: Tom Ricart
Born and bred in New Jersey, Tom spent all of his schooling in the best state in the union. Originally from South Jersey (the better half of Jersey), Tom went to The College of New Jersey as a part of the BS/MD program. While at TCNJ (yes, the “The” is an official part of the title), he got a Biology degree with a minor in music and traveled abroad to Barcelona to study Spanish and trace family roots. Following college, Tom went to the University of Medicine and Dentistry-New Jersey Medical School in Newark, NJ as a part of the MD/PhD program where was involved in many school activities and was named to the Alpha Omega Alpha Honors Society. He obtained his PhD in Behavioral Neuroscience studying the etiology of anxiety disorders using animal models with Dr. Richard Servatius. Tom was then offered a position at the Mount Sinai Triple Board Program, where he looks forward to slaving away long hours in the hospital. In the future, he wants to learn more about the etiology of mood and anxiety disorders in both “well” and “at risk” populations. When not working, Tom enjoys relaxing with his beautiful wife Diana in the great state of New Jersey and preventing his daughter Grace from falling or prying off outlet covers. With what little free time is left, Tom enjoys playing drums and following sports, especially the 2010 World Series Champion San Francisco Giants (the original Giants, not the fake New York ones).
Why the Triple Board? Besides having an obsession with integrated programs, I am interested in looking at preventing mood and anxiety disorders through early identification and intervention. In addition to adult and child psychiatric training, a more thorough understanding of both “normal” development, to better identify “abnormal” earlier, and a better understanding of diseases and disease states that may predispose to these diseases is extremely important. Triple board training enables a more complete understanding of the patients who develop these disorders, allowing for hopefully better and earlier identification and intervention.
Advice for interviewees: Really think about how the more varied training will help in your career. This type of training can be difficult with more information to master in a short time frame and you will need to be dedicated to get through it. Also, keep an open mind about the programs, you may be surprised about what you like and dislike.
PGY 1: Josh Stein
Josh attended Amherst College and earned degrees in Economics and French. He was admitted to Mount Sinai's Humanities and Medicine Program and matriculated to Sinai directly following his graduation from Amherst. In his free time, Josh oversees a non-profit that advances efforts of peer-to-peer inclusion for individuals with Down syndrome. He is a fervent supporter of all sports teams from Philadelphia.
Why Triple Board? I found myself drawn to psychiatry during my medical school years, but I had a lot of developmental pediatrics experience from before medical school. Sometime during my third year of medical school I began to realize that I could not imagine practicing psychiatry devoid of general medical expertise and I could not imagine practicing medicine without caring for the complete person.
Advice for interviewees: During my third year of medical school, the administration hired a lecturer to speak to us about career choices. He made a lot of clichés, but one comment sounded true to me then and sticks with me today: pick the field whose culture you fit most into; there's a far better chance that a field's culture is going to change you than you're going to change it. It is worthwhile to talk to as many people as you can about TB because it has a culture that is significantly different from pediatrics or psychiatry. Then decide if you'd be alright being like those people.