Meet Our Faculty

Site Directors

Marion Eakin, MD

I am the Director of the VA Mental Health Clinic and serve as the VA Site Director for the NYU Adult Psychiatry Residency Training Program. I joined the staff at the NYHHS VA in 2002 and have a particular interest in the treatment of post-traumatic stress disorder.  I graduated Harvard College with a degree in Biological Anthropology and attended Harvard Medical School.

Following a residency in primary care internal medicine, I completed my adult psychiatry residency training at the MGH/McLean program in Boston. Working within the residency program at NYU, I coordinate a PGY3 outpatient rotation in the VA Mental Health Clinic during which residents have the chance to work with veterans of all eras, particularly those returning from combat tours. I also provide support and work as a liaison for the other VA core rotations undertaken by the NYU psychiatry and double-board residents.

Over the course of four training years, residents rotate through VA inpatient medicine, outpatient neurology, inpatient psychiatry, and consult-liaison psychiatry. Residents also take weeks of night float call at the VA in their PGY2 year. One of the great strengths of the NYU program is the exceptional opportunity to train in high caliber public, private, state, and federal facilities and to be exposed to so many systems of care.  We are proud of the experience we provide for our residents at the Manhattan Campus of the New York Harbor Healthcare System and are always happy to see so many former residents return to us for further training in the NYU Addiction or Consult Liaison Fellowships -- or to join our staff.

Brunhild Kring, MD

A girl of the glen, I started out in a one-room school house in the idyllic Taunus Mountains in Germany, but eventually found my way to medical school at the Johann Wolfgang von Goethe University in Frankfurt am Main. In 1979 I joined the Psychiatric Residency Training Program at Albert Einstein College of Medicine in New York. Originally, I had not intended to stay here this long, but how can you leave New York City?

These circuitous beginnings instilled a love of teaching and life-long learning. I dedicated my career as a psychiatrist to the psychotherapeutic and psychopharmacological treatment of patients in ambulatory clinics of public hospitals in NYC - always in conjunction with residency training and medical student supervision.

Ten years ago, I made a mid-career switch and became a college mental health psychiatrist at New York University. I had first-hand experience chaperoning my two daughters through college and graduate education and became fascinated with the developmental challenges of this phase of life. I believe I can empathize with the dilemmas of young adults from the point of view of the college student and the parent alike.

Soon after my arrival at the Counseling and Wellness Services in the Student Health Center near Washington Square the PGY 3 psychiatric residents began populating our offices helping us provide mental health services for a population of 55,000 NYU undergraduate and graduate students. Also, occasionally, PGY 4s appear for an elective to solidify previously learned brief psychotherapy skills and pursue a scholarly project.

The cohorts of students are in constant flux and keep us on our toes: we have encountered Generation X, the Millennials, Generation Text, and the internet-savvy Generation Z. Who will be next?

Being in college can easily feel overwhelming. So much rides on a student's academic success. Emerging adults, as we call them now, are emotionally vulnerable to homesickness or smarting from the pain of a romantic relationship break-up. They may experience difficulties paying attention in class or suffer from acute anxiety, mood disorders, suicidal thoughts, substance use, eating disorders or psychosis.

I believe, it is very important to train psychiatric residents in college mental health. They will be familiar with a developmentally-oriented approach and can make an intervention in this crucial time of life regardless of where they may encounter patients of this age cohort.

Tara Straka, MD

I am the Site Director for the NY State OMH (Office of Mental Health) rotations in the NYU Psychiatry Residency Training program. I completed my undergraduate studies in Psychology and Art History at Northwestern University. I earned my medical degree at Columbia University in 2005 and then came to NYU for general psychiatry residency training. After residency, I continued my training in forensic psychiatry at NYU and graduated from the Forensic Psychiatry Fellowship in 2010. I then had the opportunity to continue training in public psychiatry and graduated from the NYU Public Psychiatry Fellowship in 2011.

Since I completed my forensic training, I have been an attending psychiatrist at Kirby Forensic Psychiatric Center, where I provide care and treatment to patients who have been found Not Guilty by Reason of Insanity as well as perform forensic evaluations and provide expert testimony in court. I have the pleasure of supervising PGY II residents and forensic fellows on rotation at Kirby, as well as teaching in the PGY-III psychotherapy curriculum.

As the state rotation Site Director, I act as the liaison between the various NY State facility training sites and the NYU Psychiatry Residency Training Program.

Kirby Forensic Psychiatric Center is a 193 bed maximum security state forensic hospital that cares for and evaluates patients involuntarily committed under New York Criminal Law as Insanity Acquitees and those incompetent to stand trial. The NYU training program is also affiliated with state civil in-patient and out-patient treatment facilities.

Rockland Psychiatric Center is the largest state hospital in New York, serving 370 adult inpatients and 3500 outpatients in clinics and ACT teams in 7 counties. The Rockland campus also houses The Nathan S. Kline Institute for Psychiatric Research (NKI), a facility that has earned a national and international reputation for its pioneering contributions in psychiatric research, especially in the areas of psychopharmacological treatments for schizophrenia and major mood disorders, and in the application of computer technology to mental health services.

The Manhattan Psychiatric Center 125th Street Outpatient Clinic approximately 600 patients suffering from severe and persistent mental illness and interfaces with community organizations dedicated to the sustained recovery of these patients. These organizations include various models to support recovery such as clubhouses, peer run employment training programs and crisis respite center.

The public health mission and recovery vision of NY State OMH are a fantastic complement to the city and federal public psychiatry models that are part of NYU training, which together make for a well-rounded and rich experience that is unparalleled. I couldn’t be more proud to be part of the NYU family!

Patrick Ying, MD

I am the Site Director at Tisch Hospital/One Park Avenue for the NYU Psychiatry Residency Training program. In addition, I am the Director of ECT at Tisch Hospital and Director, FGP Psychiatry Resident Program at One Park Avenue. I completed my undergraduate studies in Chemistry at Princeton University and I completed my medical degree at the NYU School of Medicine. I started my residency in psychiatry in 1997 at the NYU School of Medicine, joined the Department of Psychiatry as a faculty member in 2001, and am currently an Assistant Professor of Psychiatry. Over the years, in addition to my duties at NYU, I have also worked in the Bellevue CPEP and with the Project for Psychiatric Outreach for the homeless.   Education has been always been a priority of mine. I teach in the medical school Neuroscience curriculum, I am a course director in the PGY II year, and I am an outpatient supervisor. I am proud to have received awards for teaching from the residents on two occasions, as well as the Nancy Roeske Award for Excellence in  Medical Education from the APA.

As the Tisch/One Park Avenue Site Director, I act as the liaison between the Residency Training Program and Tisch Hospital and the outpatient psychiatry program at One Park Avenue.

Tisch Hospital is the primary teaching hospital of the NYU School of Medicine and contains a number of core rotation sites; HCC-10, a 22 bed voluntary inpatient psychiatry unit; the Tisch Consultation/Liaison service, as well as the 3rd year on-call experience. One Park Avenue contains the Department of Psychiatry’s growing outpatient service, which includes specialty services in ADHD, refractory mood disorders, reproductive psychiatry and eating disorders, and as well as the Steven and Alexandra Cohen Military Family Clinic. The Residents’ Program provides an opportunity for residents to provide care in a private practice like setting to a population that is largely employed or in school.

In addition to my duties within the Department of Psychiatry, I am a Affiliate Faculty member in the School of Medicine’s Institute of Innovations in Medical Education, which was created to foster excellence in medical education by pursuing innovative models for teaching, learning and assessment. I am also on the School of Medicine’s Mentoring Steering Committee, and the Executive Committee of the Faculty Council.

Curriculum Directors

Siddhartha Nadkarni, MD

I was born in India of parents whose lineages come from a region around Goa. I grew up in NYC and India for the first few years of my life while my parents re-did their residencies here in the states, but most of my upbringing was in the Orlando/Central Florida area (an awesome and curious place to grow up). I went to Brown University where I studied Comparative Literature (with my language being Sanskrit) and Biology and received A.B.’s in those concentrations there. It was here that I continued to do a considerable amount of writing that follows through to the present time (mainly fiction/poetry). Subsequently, I matriculated at the University of Miami School of Medicine where I found medical school quite soul-deadening and dulling (nothing like the undergraduate experience) till I heard one of my professors speak about deliriums and dementias. This professor piqued my interest and this experience foreshadowed what was to become a passion for me. In my clinical years of medical school I ended up liking all my rotations but fell for psychiatry and neurology independently. I applied to combined residencies, of which there may have been one or two officially offered. I was blessed to find an open door at NYU, where they created a combined residency out of thin air, the two departments working seamlessly together to petition the ACGME and the ABPN to make it happen. I started here in 1997 with one other person as the first class of the Combined Residency in Neurology and Psychiatry. After 6 years of training in residency I did a fellowship in Clinical Neurophysiology/Epilepsy-EEG, and then stayed on with this this group as Faculty.

My interests lie in the intersection of the two fields and in Epilepsy/Neurophysiology. I currently wear the following hats:

  1. Program Director, Combined Residency in Neurology and Psychiatry
  2. Director, Neuroscience Curriculum Psychiatry Residency Training Program
  3. Program Director, Epilepsy Research Fellowship
  4. Director, NYU Fellows’ Epilepsy Clinic

My roles in the psychiatry residency involve supervision, mentoring of double board residents, administration of that residency and ongoing improvement of the neuroscience curriculum, at such an exciting time for our field in that regard.

I am board certified in:

  1. Psychiatry (ABPN)
  2. Neurology (ABPN)
  3. Clinical Neurophysiology (ABPN)
  4. Epilepsy (ABPN)
  5. Neuropsychiatry and Behavioral Neurology (UCNS)

My work passions include teaching/mentoring trainees at all levels and learning who is living in the house that is one’s body, and how to help mitigate that person’s suffering. These two are the only fields in medicine that approach this question of “who.” I am also interested in questions of mind/brain dichotomies and somewhat steeped in mysticism as an area of interest/practice.

Cora Johnson, MD

I am a psychoanalyst and I serve as a Director of the Psychotherapy Didactics for the residents.  My own education began in the public schools of my hometown, Baltimore City.  I graduated from St. John’s College where I studied philosophy before going on to work in education.  Several years later, I decided to go to medical school.  Medicine seemed to me to be an ideal way to help others and continue attending to my curiosity and interest in the human condition.

I attended Temple University Medical School in Philadelphia, PA while I volunteered at a very special free clinic in North Philly where I underwent a number of transformative experiences as I began to understand much more deeply about the life-long journey of learning from the people who trust me with the privilege of attending to their care.

After completing my residency at NYU, I opened my private practice and completed analytic training at the Institute for Psychoanalytic Education at NYU School of Medicine.  I have been supervising residents and teaching a course on interruptions, transitions and terminations in psychotherapy for most of the last eight years.

I oversee the psychotherapy didactics for the residency program. I am delighted to have the opportunity to continue developing the exciting curriculum that is in place.  Working with so many gifted clinicians who are passionate about teaching and learning together makes this work invigorating.  This camaraderie could not be more important in the world we all live in, filled with the tensions between the pains of not knowing and the exhilarations of obtaining new things through learning.

Medical Student Education

Molly Poag, MD

For over two decades I have been devoted to student and resident education in psychiatry, leadership, and caring for patients. I became the Director of Medical Student Education in the Department of Psychiatry at NYU in July of 2010, but have been part of the NYU community for over fifteen years. I graduated from Georgetown University in 1983 with a major in English. I received my medical degree from Cornell University Medical College in 1987, and completed post-graduate training in psychiatry at the Columbia University College of Physicians and Surgeons and the New York State Psychiatric Institute, where I was an inpatient attending through 1994. From 1994-2004, I served as Chief of Education and Training in Psychiatry at Lenox Hill Hospital where my primary responsibility was the educational experience for NYU psychiatry residents and medical students doing a portion of their training at Lenox Hill. I then became Chair of the Department of Psychiatry at Lenox Hill Hospital, and also served as Vice President of the Medical Board for three consecutive terms up until the time I moved into my full-time role at NYU School of Medicine.

At NYU I direct medical student education in psychiatry. I have been involved in developing the new NYU School of Medicine C21 Curriculum – Curriculum for the 21st Century. Within this exciting curriculum launched in 2011, I collaborate with numerous other departments to create novel teaching tools including on-line modules, interdisciplinary selectives, and Simulation Center learning activities.

Recently I have begun an additional role as Assistant Dean of Medical Education for the Clinical Sciences for undergraduate medical education at NYU. I also teach and supervise in the NYU Psychiatry Residency. In addition to undergraduate and post-graduate education in psychiatry I have been involved in continuing medical education in numerous areas including anxiety disorders, depression in the medically ill, depression and cardiovascular disease, and physician health. One of my major goals is that medical students and physicians at all levels, develop an in depth understanding of how a person’s mental health impacts their physical health status, and the frequent bi-directional relationship between the two.

In addition to my role in medical education, I am active in numerous medical school leadership committees including the NYU Department of Psychiatry Executive Committee, the Appointments and Promotions Committee, and the NYU SoM Admissions Committee. I am also a member of the APA, ADMSEP, and the American College of Psychiatrists. I have been honored to receive numerous awards in education, including NYU's Master Educator Award and the American Psychiatric Association’s Nancy C.A. Roeske Award for Excellence in Medical Student Education. My publications have been primarily in Anxiety Disorders.

Victoria Dinsell, MD

Welcome to Psychiatry training at NYU! I am the Director of the Psychiatry Clerkship. NYU and Bellevue Hospital have been my training and professional homes in some capacity since 2001. I finished medical school at NYU in 2006 and stayed on for residency training. After residency I completed the Public Psychiatry Fellowship at Columbia and then the Forensic Psychiatry Fellowship at NYU. Before starting in my current role, I worked for the New York State Office of Mental Health in health care delivery innovations, the New York City Department of Health and Mental Hygiene in the Assisted Outpatient Treatment Program, and from 2015-2017 I was an attending psychiatrist on the Forensic Psychiatry Inpatient Service at Bellevue. In addition to running the psychiatry clerkship, I am on the faculty of the Forensic Psychiatry Fellowship Program.  Bellevue and NYU offer a rich, challenging, and dynamic environment for all levels of trainees. I feel incredibly fortunate to love what I do and the trainees and colleagues with whom I work.

Child & Adolescent Psychiatry

Jess Shatkin, MD

No one is more surprised than I to find myself living in Manhattan and working as the Vice Chair for Education in the Department of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry (NYU Child Study Center). I hail from just north of San Francisco, where I had one of those very liberal 1970's childhoods, which didn't really prepare me for medical school. Still, I thought I might want to be a doctor like my father, but when I got to college at UC Berkeley, I found I didn't really like the premed courses. And unfortunately, I liked most of the premed students even less. Luckily, I found my way into public health education, earning my MPH from UNC Chapel Hill, and working for a number of years in Los Angeles training workers in occupational safety and health and environmental waste management.

During this time, my awareness of the social and political power of education and training grew immensely, and my interest in using education as a tool for social change took root. With a headful of big ideas and an appetite for more authority within healthcare, I left for medical school at age 29 and loved my four years at SUNY Downstate. I completed my residency and fellowship training at UCLA and then, with a theatre director wife and children in tow, spent two years in rural Arkansas with the National Health Service Corps. I loved working in public psychiatry, but I missed the stimulation of an academic center. I attempted to merge the two in 2003, when I became Associate Training Director and Medical Director of Child Psychiatry Services at U of Pitt's Western Psychiatric Institute and Clinic, where I made wonderful colleagues, helped manage a broad range of clinical and education programs, and still saw patients with about 70% of my time. I left Pittsburgh for NYU in 2006 because I was given the opportunity to develop a vast range of education and training programs that has kept me ecstatically busy ever since.

Here, I have been able to enhance the quality and expand the size of our child and adolescent psychiatry training program; establish new affiliations with hospitals and clinics; design and direct the largest undergraduate child and adolescent psychology program in the country at the NYU College of Arts and Science; run a weekly grand rounds in child/adolescent psychiatry; host our department's weekly Doctor Radio show; serve as primary investigator for a number of medical and sleep education research projects; write books; and still see patients pretty much every single day. I get too little time to play guitar but just enough time to exercise regularly. Without a doubt, however, I am most proud of my marriage and two kids.