Pediatric Psychiatry Fellowship Electives

A special feature of this program is that Year 2 fellows have ample opportunity to create individualized elective experiences.


Year 2 fellows have approximately 1.5 days of elective time for 12 months.


Fellows can intensively focus their elective choices in an area of particular interest, or they can perform several electives in a wider range of disciplines. Numerous elective opportunities are available, and fellows are also encouraged to organize new elective opportunities in areas of special interest with program review and approval.

Fellows can return to a Year 1 clinical service, where they function as a senior fellow on the service. Alternatively, they can choose from a wide array of electives at the hospital and in the community, including, among others, an eating disorders day treatment experience, administrative projects, pediatric sleep clinic, community agency involvement including in-home and school visits, bereavement work, forensic projects, speech therapy, a multidisciplinary developmental disability clinic, and opportunities to work within a large local community mental health center.  Research and teaching elective experiences are also available.

The following elective experiences are usually available, subject to individual schedule constraints.

  • Bereavement (Lurie Children's Heartlight Program)
  • Child and Adolescent Psychiatry Sleep Disorders (Anna Ivanenko, MD, PhD)
  • Child protection research (Mary Clyde Pierce, MD)
  • Cognitive behavioral therapy (MaryBeth Lake, MD)
  • Psychiatry and Behavioral Health Consultation service senior elective (James MacKenzie, DO)
  • Developmental disabilities and autism assessment and treatment (Advocate Illinois Masonic Developmental Center, Lisa Yeh, MD)
  • Diabetes med/psych program (Jill Weissberg-Benchell, PhD)
  • Early childhood (ages 0-5) "Right Start" program (Julie Rinaldi, PhD)
  • Eating disorders (Vesna Pirec, MD, PhD, and Ellen Astrachan-Fletcher, PhD)
  • Family therapy (Richard Wendel, DMin, LMFT)
  • Forensic psychiatry (Cook County Office of the Public Guardian, Juvenile Division)
  • Group therapy electives in areas such as disruptive behavior disorders, social skills, parental support, sleep disturbances, child anxiety, CBT, etc. (supervisor varies)
  • Hematology/oncology consult (James MacKenzie, DO)
  • HIV (Kay Malee, PhD)
  • Individualized educational program school meetings (Karen Pierce, MD)
  • Individual research, teaching, or administrative electives (supervisors vary)
  • Infant assessment (Connie Weil, PhD)
  • Inpatient unit senior elective (Tom Cummins, MD)
  • Medical psychology seminars (Jill Weissberg-Benchell, PhD)
  • Mood and anxiety program (MAP) (Rebecca Ford-Paz, PhD; Poonam Jha, MD)
  • Neuropsychiatry (Sigita Plioplys, MD)
  • Neuropsychology/developmental assessment (Frank Zelko, PhD)
  • Pain program (JohnLavigne PhD)
  • Partial hospitalization program senior elective (Nicholas Hatzis, MD)
  • Pediatric neurology ICU (Joshua Goldstein, MD; Mark Wainwright, MD)
  • Pediatric sleep medicine (Stephen Sheldon, DO)
  • Psychoanalytic course participation, various (The Chicago Institute for Psychoanalysis)
  • School and community consultation (Colleen Cicchetti, PhD; Claire Coyne, PhD)
  • Speech and language assessment (Lindsay Miller, MS, SLP)
  • Transplant evaluations (Jill Weissberg-Benchell, PhD)
  • Trauma team (Megan Lerner, LCSW)
  • Urgent care (Margery Johnson, MD)

Overall Goal

Goals for individual electives are determined in consultation with the elective supervisor and are approved by the program director. The overall goal of all elective experiences is to provide fellows with exposure to a wide range of subspecialty areas to gain expertise and aid in focusing career choices.