Current Residents

PGY-Is

Amari Carter

Name: Amari Carter [he/him]
College: BS, Biological Sciences, The Tuskegee University
Medical School: Howard University School of Medicine
Bio: Amari demonstrated a continued commitment to service through his
extensive volunteerism while at Howard. Most notably, at the Adams Place Men’s Homeless Shelter (which offers a hot dinner and beds to the underserved community), he ultimately became a student liaison where he managed schedules and coordinated volunteers for different events. Amari is committed to mentorship and enabling exposure to the field of medicine to underrepresented and underserved students. As a brother of Alpha Phi Alpha Fraternity, he has consistently served as a mentor and provided leadership to disadvantaged black male youths throughout the Atlanta and D.C. metropolitan areas.

Hobbies: Cross-platform video games, with his favorite being Apex legends, where he is currently ranked Platinum on the global servers; Shonen manga, anime, and reading comic books

Gary Hovsepian

Name: Gary Hovsepian [he/him]
College: BS, Biology, The George Washington University
Medical School: The George Washington University School of Medicine & Health Sciences
Bio: Gary prides himself on connecting and communicating well with the people he serves through his experiences working in retail, providing comfort to inpatient hospice patients, engaging in ethnic communities, tutoring, and mentoring. Through Gary’s Armenian heritage and experiences with the greater Armenian community, he has gained an appreciation for the unique medical needs and considerations of subpopulations of ethnic minorities. He strives to apply his insights in his future work to provide culturally sensitive, patient centered care.

Hobbies: His hobbies and interests include plant propagation, beginner ukuleleist, 10+ guitarist, weight training, medication, language learning and is  an avid manga reader.

Benjamin McMahon
Name: Benjamin McMahon [he/him]
College: BS, Biology; BS, History, University of Florida
Medical School: Tulane University School of Medicine
Bio: 

Ben, raised in Tallahassee, FL, holds dual bachelor's degrees in Biology and History fromthe University of Florida, with a focus on disability studies and Holocaust history. His noteworthy research on the experimental transmissibility of ALS at the Borchelt Laboratory secured a grant from the Howard Hughes Medical Institute, leading to clinical research on neurotoxicity models of Huntington’s disease in Berlin, Germany at Charité Hospital. He then joined the National
Institutes of Health for a two-year stint studying the clinical relationship between Gaucher disease and Parkinson’s disease before heading back down south to join his twin sister in New Orleans to attend Tulane School of Medicine. While at Tulane, Ben was the executive coordinator for the Compassion Prison Project, a grassroots organization dedicated to
establishing trauma-informed connections between ambassadors and individuals who are incarcerated. He was also awarded the Tulane Klingenstein Child and Adolescent Psychiatry Fellowship prior to hosting a workshop at international conferences titled "A National State of Emergency in Children’s Mental Health: Now What? A Practical Guide on Advocacy." In addition to his rigorous residency training, Ben is pursuing his MBA through the GW School of Business.

Hobbies: Running, amateur woodworking, evening walks, talking with friends, learning American Sign Language from his sister, and fishing with his dad

Justin Sevier

Name: Justin Sevier [he/him]
College: BA, Spanish language, Literature and Culture, The George Washington University
Medical School: The George Washington University School of Medicine & Health Sciences
Bio: Justin entered medical school with eight years of paramedic
and clinical experience. Through years spent as a medical technician in
inpatient psychiatric units and integrative medicine clinics, and then
through his medical school rotations in our psychiatry department,
he has witnessed advances in the foundational science and clinical
practice of psychiatry and envisions a career contributing to continued
growth in the field.

Hobbies: Exercise, meditation, camping/hiking/backpacking

Clinical Interests: Exercise, meditation, sleep hygiene, ancestral diets

Yuto Tobin Miyaji

Name: Yuto Tobin Miyaji [he/him]
College: BS, Biochemistry, Binghamton University
Medical School: Albert Einstein College of Medicine
Bio: Yuto was involved during the COVID pandemic by volunteering his time to deliver groceries, create care packages for mothers, and tutor children for families working in healthcare. He maintained his diligence through health concerns within the family; his father was placed in a nursing home during his first year of medical school, and he ran errands for his 99-year-old grandmother bi-weekly during the height of the pandemic. Yuto is active in the soccer community, playing in a semi-pro/amateur NYC league in medical school where he built strong relationships and provided guidance to underclassmen. He is a member of FC Japan, which plays in the Cosmopolitan Soccer League and consists of semi-pro/amateur teams in NYC.

Hobbies: Running, hiking, snowboarding, salsa dancing, photography, cooking, and baking

Ramsin Yadgar

Name: Ramsin Yadgar [he/him]
College: BS, Electrical Engineering, University of California Santa Barbara
Medical School: The George Washington University School of Medicine and Health Sciences
Bio: Ramsin graduated summa cum laude with a Bachelor of Science in
Electrical Engineering from the University of California Santa Barbara before attending GW for medical school. Prior to medicine, Ramsin had a successful career working as an electrical engineer in a Fortune 500 company. He decided to change his career to his true passion of becoming a doctor and went on to complete his prerequisites for medical school at the Scripps College Post Baccalaureate Premedical Program in Claremont, California. Ramsin has had extensive research experience and publications, starting from his senior engineering design project in college that culminated in a publication that has been cited over 300 times. His interests include patient education and advocacy, minority health, medical innovation/technology, and mentorship.

Hobbies: Running, high-intensity interval training, skateboarding,
cars, architecture, design, and exploring new places to eat 

Clinical Interests: Addiction psychiatry, cross-cultural psychiatry, child and adolescent psychiatry, and neuropsychiatry

 

PGY-IIs

Martin Clark
Name: Martin Clark, MD [he/him]
College: BS, Psychology, Virginia Commonwealth University
Medical School: George Washington University School of Medicine and Health Sciences
Bio:

Martin began his career as a mental health technician at Tucker Pavilion Psychiatric Hospital and enrolled in a post- baccalaureate pre-health sciences program while working full time at Tucker. Through his work with student interest groups and as a rehabilitation specialist and crisis intervention specialist on an Assertive Community Treatment in DC, he worked with adults experiencing homelessness and chronic mental illness. He has received awards and recognition for excellence in leadership in mental health delivery and organization both in the community and during medical school. Martin has shown steadfast commitment to providing mental health support for vulnerable patients and populations, and he hopes to continue his work in his future career.

Clinical Interests: Community psychiatry, assertive community treatment, addiction medicine, evolutionary psychiatry, and psychosomatic medicine

Hobbies: Long distance backpacking (hiked 2,650 mile of the Pacific Crest Trail and 1,250 miles of the Appalachian Trail), bicycle touring (completed section of The Great Divide Mountain Bike Route from Canada to Montana), trail running, and electronic music production

Darren Jackson II
Name: Darren Jackson II, MD [he/him]
College: BS, Morgan State University
Graduate Studies: MPH, Columbia University Mailman School of Public Health
Medical School: Georgetown University School of Medicine
Bio: 

Darren completed his B.S. at Morgan State University and his M.P.H. at Columbia University Mailman School of Public Health. As the Wellness Coordinator for The Harlem Children’s Zone, he used his passion for child development to forge a more efficient and effective support system for kids of color living in Harlem. He continued his commitment to youth mentorship through his position as the senior program coordinator for the Envision National Youth Leadership Forum. In his role, he led a diverse staff of educators and managed the daily facilitation of a hands-on clinical curriculum for over 900 High School STEM students.

Hobbies:Meditation (Books-Medications for Men Who Do Too Much, The Mind Illuminated, Mixed martial arts, Event Planning (RULES for Black Men, Public Health Theory of Change for Underserved Communities)

Hira Mohyuddin

Name: Hira Mohyuddin, MD [she/her]
College: BA, Cognitive Neuroscience, University of Virginia
Medical School: George Washington University School of Medicine and Health Sciences
Bio: Hira has been a member of a multidisciplinary team of medical students, residents and faculty for the past twelve years, during which time, she has participated in research projects, presented at national conferences and has multiple publications to her credit. She is passionate about advocacy and believes her experience as an intern for former senator and current Vice President Kamala Harris was instrumental in helping her realize that she is drawn towards advocating for underrepresented populations, for equity health access and delivery, and for parity for mental health services. She has served as president for three student organizations in medical school (William H. Beaumont Medical Research Honor Society, Psychiatry Interest Group, Art in Medicine Club) and is currently serving as Co-Chair of the Wellness Committee. Hira’s leadership in these roles speaks to service to her school and community in a variety of capacities. She is also a member of the Gold Humanism Honor Society.

Hobbies: Tae Kwon Do (where she has a black belt!), kickboxing, reading, traveling around the world

Clinical Interests: Forensic psychiatry, consultation-liaison psychiatry, and interventional psychiatry

Marisa Penn

Name: Marisa Penn, MD [she/her]
College: BS, Neuroscience with Chemistry and Psychology Minors, Duke University
Medical School: Keck School of Medicine of the University of Southern California
Bio: Marisa recently graduated from Keck School of Medicine of the University of Southern California. She completed her B.S. in Neuroscience with Chemistry & Psychology Minors from Duke University. Marisa has developed an interest in neural networks and their implications in psychological pathology, and became involved in a variety of research in brain pathology and neuromodulation as a treatment for psychiatric disorders, including Obsessive Compulsive Disorder. She is passionate about mentorship, and integrated opportunities to give back through mentorship in her various leadership roles during medical school, as an anatomy tutor and mentor in medical school for first year medical students, and as a participant in a various mentorship programs for premedical students, elementary children interested in STEM, and underserved communities. Marisa first became interested in psychiatry prior to medical school when she worked in an inpatient psychiatric facility alongside a multidisciplinary team leading dialectical behavior therapy groups and assisting patients as they adjusted to medications and processed their traumas and diagnoses. She later came to love psychiatry because it allows her to explore the intersections of medicine with social issues within the legal and education systems, and make significant impacts on patients' quality of life. 

Hobbies: Marisa has been slowly turning her apartment into a jungle with her extensive houseplant collection. During her free time, you can find her re-watching The Office for the 100th time, exploring the city through food (especially brunch!), frequenting overpriced coffee shops, or hanging out near a body of water.

Clinical Interests: Neuromodulation, child and adolescent psychiatry, and consultation-liaison psychiatry

Vignesh Sadras
Name: Vignesh Sadras, MD [he/him]
College: BS, Biomedical Engineering, Johns Hopkins University 
Medical School: Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine
Bio: Vignesh provided GED tutoring to people who were incarcerated and experiencing mental illness at the Baltimore City Detention Center through the Johns Hopkins University Jail Tutorial Project. Through his experience, he recognized his own biases and the truth of human dignity. He facilitated engagement with an East Baltimore community advocacy group to repair the historic and current injustices experienced by this community of color and it has impressed upon him his responsibility as a physician to advocate for social justice. Vignesh led a 30-minute weekly meditation group for the entire East Baltimore Johns Hopkins community for participants to learn about, practice, and reflect on approaches to Dharmic religions. Guiding this group has taught him how to create a safe and engaging learning environment, how to facilitate group discussions, and it has also deepened his own practice of meditation.
 

Hobbies: He enjoys singing, especially spiritually oriented songs and Carnatic (South Indian Classical) music, appreciates books written by visionaries in spirituality and social justice (Swami Chinmayananda, Marisela Gomez, Bryan Stevenson)

Clinical Interests: Spirituality in Psychiatry, Homelessness

Rina Samant

Name: Rina Samant, MD [she/her]
College: BA, Psychology, The George Washington University
Medical School: The George Washington University School of Medicine & Health Sciences
Bio: Rina Samant is originally from Michigan. She received her B.A. in
Psychology from the George Washington University, where she
also attended medical school. Along with the M.D. program, she
completed a Scholarly Concentration in Health Policy. Between her
first and second years of medical school, she was selected to
participate in the national Health Policy Fellowship Initiative. She
completed an internship in the Government Affairs division of the
American Academy of Ophthalmology. She authored a letter to be
circulated among organizations that will work with the Academy to
advocate for Medicare coverage of visual assistive devices for
individuals with low vision. She also co-authored the paper “A Call
to Cease the Use of Slave Analogies in Medical Literature”, which
explores the use of the term “master-slave” in medical literature
and proposes alternate terminology. She is completing her PGY 1
in Internal Medicine at Piedmont Macon Medical Center. Rina is
excited to pursue psychiatry at GW because of the positive impact
that mental health care can have on every aspect of a patient’s life.
Her clinical interests include inpatient child and adolescent
psychiatry.

Hobbies: Rina loves to read, especially biographies and books
about European history. She also enjoys solving sudoku puzzles
and word searches.

Clinical Interests: Child and adolescent psychiatry

Aryan Tafreshi
Name: Aryan Tafreshi, MD [he/him]
College: BA, Biological Sciences, Binghamton University
Medical School: State University of New York (SUNY) Upstate Medical University

Bio: Aryan played a pivotal role in refugee care during his time as a medical student as he had provided translation services in Dari, assessed patients in the clinical setting, and helped connect Afghan patients with health-services after the Taliban’s takeover of Afghanistan in the summer of 2021. He remains committed to refugee care and is interested in global mental health as he is currently involved in GW’s Global Mental Health Equity Lab under the supervision of Dr. Brandon Kohrt. He is an active singer-songwriter and recognizes the important role music and arts can play in mental health as it can be both an outlet and a way to connect with others' shared experiences. 

Hobbies: Sound Design, Music Production, Audio Engineering, Vocal Recording & Songwriting, Fishing, Kayaking, Iranian/Persian Culture and Associated Festivals/Holidays; Reading Russian Literature, Fantasy and Magic Realism (Favorite author is Haruki Murakami)

Clinical Interests: Global Mental Health, Translational Medicine, Refugee Care

PGY-IIIs

Prudhi
Name: Prudhvi Bandi, MD [he/him]
College: BS, Psychology (Neuroscience Concentration), Boston College
Medical School: Creighton University School of Medicine, Phoenix Regional Campus
Bio: Prudhvi was born and raised in a rural village in Southern India.  He completed his undergraduate coursework in Psychology (Neuroscience Concentration) at Boston College in Newton, Massachusetts, and  then earned his medical degree from Creighton University School of Medicine Phoenix Regional Campus. During his medical education, he was active in service, research and leadership roles in the field of psychiatry. This included at the Andre House in Phoenix, and the Siena Francis House in Omaha, where he served meals to homeless populations. As a first-generation Indian American, he sees education, advocacy and normalization around mental health issues for people in his own cultural community and beyond as the primary drives of his pursuit in training in psychiatry.
Hobbies: Hiking, kayaking, playing chess, playing and watching basketball, playing Super Smash Bro’s with his fiancé, and  running his golden-doodle puppy’s Instagram page. He is a self- confessed foodie and is on the hunt for the world’s best breakfast burritos.
Miglia Cornejo
Name: Miglia Cornejo, DO [she/her]
College: BS, Chemical Engineering, Northeastern University
Medical School: A.T. Still University of Health Sciences, School of Osteopathic Medicine
Bio: Miglia was born and raised in Rockaway, NJ. She received her undergraduate degree in Chemical Engineering from Northeastern University and her master’s from Boston University. She earned her medical degree from A.T. Still University School of Osteopathic Medicine in Arizona. While in medical school, Miglia completed a Global Affairs summer internship at Jaseng Hospital in South Korea. As the first hospital’s first osteopathic student, Miglia introduced the practice of osteopathic medicine and manipulative techniques to Korean medical providers. Miglia has worked extensively with the Asian American community. She helped organize the first Asian American Pacific Islander Mental Health Summit in Boston as well as served on the planning committee for the annual Let’s Talk Conference hosted by the MGH Center for Cross-Cultural Wellness. Miglia also served as an ambassador for Together Empowering Asian Minds, an organization focused on de-stigmatizing mental health in the Asian American community.
Hobbies: Group fitness and indoor cycling classes, drawing, painting, reading movie/show/book spoilers and playing Pokemon Go.
Veda
Name: Veda Ghodasara, MD [she/her]
College: BS, Biology, The George Washington University
Medical School: West Virginia University School of Medicine
Bio: Veda is from Charleston, WV. She attended The George Washington University here in DC where she obtained a bachelor’s degree in biology, summa cum laude. She received the GWU Presidential Scholarship for Academic Excellence. After college, she worked as a research assistant, extern, learning assistant and front desk agent for Holiday Inn (which she continues to do!). She earned her medical degree from West Virginia University School of Medicine – Charleston. She has hosted many events including various fairs, festivals and show for school events, as well as fundraisers for organizations such as Make-A-Wish. She has recently volunteered at the Depression and Bipolar Support Alliance during the COVID-19 pandemic.
Hobbies: Traveling, foodie, visiting amusement parks (has been to 7/10 of the tallest roller coasters in the world), watching the big four award shows every year and collecting the Time’s 100 most influential People each year
Nina Govalla
Name: Nina Govalla, MD [she/her]
College: BS, Missouri University of Science and Technology in Rolla, Missouri
Medical School: University of Missouri-Kansas City, School of Medicine
Bio: Nina was born in Douala, the industrial capital of Cameroon. She completed her undergraduate course in Biological Sciences at Missouri University of Science and Technology in Rolla, Missouri. She then earned her medical degree from University of Missouri-Kansas City, School of Medicine. Throughout medical school, she worked as a Caregiver for elderly patients with dementia. She volunteered as a mentor to refugee youths in the Kansas City area. As an immigrant, she is primarily driven to improve mental health for people in her cultural community. She hopes to create an organization to promote mental health awareness in Cameroon. Nina completed her PGY-1 year of residency at the University of Arizona-Tucson Banner Health Psychiatry Program, after which she joined the GW Psychiatry Residency Program as a PGY-2.
Hobbies: baking cheese, running her thrifting page, sewing, traveling and sampling desserts from all cultures, reading fiction novels, game nights with friends and family.
James Lockhart
Name: James Lockhart, MD [he/him]
College: BS, Psychology, Morehouse College
Medical School: Howard University College of Medicine
Bio: James hails from Chicago, IL. He completed his undergraduate coursework at Morehouse College in Atlanta, GA and earned his medical degree from Howard University College of Medicine. He was chosen by his peers for induction into the Gold Humanism Honor Society. Serving as president of Student Wellness at Howard, he was responsible for organizing and facilitating activities for his class. He also served as a liaison between students and the University Counseling Service. He is the first in his family to graduate from college. His interest in psychiatry is substance abuse recovery and prevention.
Hobbies: Brazilian Jiujitsu. James and his daughters practice jiujitsu, just like his father practiced judo with him.
Emily Rosen
Name: Emily Rosen, MD [she/her]
College: BS, Biology and Psychology, Knox College
Medical School: University of Texas at Austin Dell Medical School
Bio: Emily is from Austin, Texas. She attended college at Knox College in Galesburg, IL where she obtained a Bachelor of Arts in Biology and Psychology, summa cum laude. After graduating, she studied Human Sciences abroad at the Oxford University in Oxford, England. She earned her medical degree from the University of Texas at Austin Dell Medical School. Emily received A.C Walon Scholarship in Biology and was awarded the Presidential Scholarship (the highest available, awarded to 5 students per year). She has completed a Master of Science in Health Care Transformation. She assumed a leadership role in reforming treatment at a substance use residential treatment center. She has served as a tutor in high school and college and as a facilitator for an interprofessional heath care course during medical school. She mentored students earning their master’s degree and developed a seminar to teach religious leaders about PTSD.
Hobbies: Yoga, hiking, biking, kayaking, rowing, competitive board games. She likes to read international fiction and travel memoirs and attends musicals. She also loves to travel and learn about other cultures.
Marc
Name: Marc Ruszaj, MD [he/him]
College: BS, Biology and Psychology, Canisius College
Medical School: Jacobs School of Medicine and Biomedical Sciences at the University of Buffalo
Bio: Marc is from Buffalo, NY. He attended Canisius College in Buffalo, NY where he obtained a Bachelor’s degree in Biology and Psychology, summa cum laude. He earned his medical degree from the Jacobs School of Medicine and Biomedical Sciences at the University of Buffalo. He was a member of the Gold Humanism Honor Society. During medical school, he has had significant involvement in community outreach program. Through his involvement in LGBTQ’s organizations, he has implemented initiatives at the level of his school’s free medical clinic, the medical school, and the regional health care system. Mark was the team captain of his collegiate swim team in addition to his role on an interdisciplinary team at the Lighthouse Free Medical Clinic.
Hobbies: Long distance swimming (has been swimming since the age of 3!), hiking, listening to podcasts, paint by numbers, playing and going on walks with his dog, attending buffalo bills games and has recently taken up tennis.

 

PGY-IVs

Alexander Beard

Name: Alexander Beard, MD [he/him]
College: BS, Microbiology, University of South Florida
Medical School: University of South Florida Morsani College of Medicine
Bio: Alex grew up near Tampa, Florida and earned a B.S. in Microbiology from the University of South Florida.  He also completed medical school at that same university.  While in medical school, he was involved in a student-run free clinic as well as medical aid trips to Haiti and Nicaragua.  In medical school, he participated in clinical observerships in Germany, Ecuador, and China. He was also involved in research in esketamine being used for treatment-resistant
depression. Alex currently serves as the Inpatient Chief Resident. 

Clinical interests: global mental health, cultural psychiatry, consultation-liaison psychiatry, sleep psychiatry, psycho-oncology, and forensic psychiatry

Hobbies: Hiking, video games, board games, travel

Lisa Eitches

Name: Lisa Eitches, MD [she/her]
College: BA, English and French Studies, Wesleyan University
Medical School: Sidney Kimmel Medical School at Thomas Jefferson University
Bio: Lisa graduated from the Sidney Kimmel Medical School at Thomas Jefferson University. She received her B.A. in English and French Studies from Wesleyan University. She spent multiple summers volunteering as an English teacher in the Democratic Republic of Congo. Her professional experiences also include her work as a special events director and a copywriter. During medical school, she has served as the Student Wellness Chair of Psychiatry Society as well as the Vice President of Integrative Medicine Society.

Clinical Interests:  Women’s mental health, addiction, forensics

Krista Koskinen

Name: Krista Koskinen, MD [she/her]
Medical School: School of Medicine at Uppsala University
Bio:  Krista grew up in Finland and studied medicine at Uppsala University in Sweden. During medical school Krista completed two semesters of her studies in Bangladesh, Vietnam and Nepal where she also participated in community based mental health projects. After graduation, Krista worked as a physician in several medical and psychiatric emergency departments as well as psychiatric outpatient clinics. Besides the residency training at GW, Krista is currently completing her psychoanalytic training at the Institute of Contemporary Psychoanalysis in DC. Krista is fluent in English, Finnish, Swedish, French, and Spanish. Krista serves as the Outpatient Chief Resident. 

Clinical Interests: Global Mental Health, Psychotherapy and Psychoanalysis
  

 
Frough Safavi

Name: Tina Safavi, MD [she/her]
College: BS, Biology, James Madison University
Graduate School: Biomedical Science Policy and Advocacy, Georgetown University
Medical School: Virginia Commonwealth University School of Medicine
Bio: Tina graduated from the Virginia Commonwealth University School of Medicine. She earned her B.S. in Biology from James Madison University and her M.S. in Biomedical Science Policy and Advocacy from Georgetown University. In the Richmond community, she founded a youth awareness campaign to educate and promote safe sexual health practices. In addition, she has served as a consultant for PAHO/WHO and interned with the White House Office of Science & Technology Policy. She currently serves as the Administrative Chief Resident. 
 

Clinical Interests: Global mental health, public health

 
Roe Zelasko

Name: Rosie Zelasko, MD [they/them]
College: BA, Playwriting, University at Buffalo
Medical School: Jacobs School of Medicine and Biomedical Sciences at University at Buffalo
Bio: Roe was born, raised, and will talk to you extensively about Buffalo, NY.  They went to the University at Buffalo for undergrad where they studied playwriting and afterwards moved to New York City to pursue this further (and also to pursue hourly wage jobs that paid the bills during this time).  From there they served in the Peace Corps in Benin, West Africa for two years and have worked on various projects in childhood malnutrition and other community initiative around West Africa since then.  After all that, they found some time to go to medical school at the University at Buffalo.

Clinical Interests: Global Mental Health, community-based treatment of first episode psychosis, mental healthcare for transgender individuals. 

Hobbies: Theatre, community activism