Student Faculty Collaborate

Milwaukee Residency Program

Message From Our Residency Program Director

Mara Pheister, MD, Associate Professor

Mara Pheister, MD

Congratulations on your decision to pursue psychiatric training! It is an absolutely wonderful field that is constantly evolving, combining new research and techniques with the art and science of psychotherapy.

Our goal is to provide a stimulating environment for the education and training of tomorrow's psychiatrist. We aim to develop residents into psychiatrists who provide excellent, compassionate and comprehensive care for psychiatric patients.

Our fully accredited residency program offers both four year and three year options (available to individuals who have chosen psychiatry later in their careers). We believe that the cornerstone to learning psychiatry is understanding the patient. This means spending time with patients to learn not only about their symptoms, but also about their lives.

It means learning to help patients acknowledge, bear, and put in perspective their pain; and it means helping the patients to help themselves. This requires a fundamental knowledge of psychodynamics, family and social systems, as well as psychopharmacology and neuroscience.

Our educational program focuses on approaches: 1) direct patient responsibility; 2) didactic teaching through lectures, seminars, and case conferences; 3) clinical supervision; and 4) reflection. Teaching provides the conceptual base for patient care while supervision provides the integration. A key part of psychiatry is also reflecting on yourself – your response to patients, where you need to improve your knowledge, how to support your colleagues.

To strong clinical and teaching components in psychodynamics and cognitive and behavioral therapy (CBT), and services in inpatient and general hospital psychiatry, we have added a growing clinical and basic science research base. In conjunction with our various affiliates, we offer a balance of training in both public and private sector psychiatry.

In recent years, our department has grown tremendously. We are proud to offer fellowships in Child & Adolescent Psychiatry, Psychosomatic Medicine, Geriatric Psychiatry and Forensic Psychiatry. Additionally, we have a Sleep Medicine Fellowship and Palliative Care Fellowship that can be pursued by graduates of psychiatry training programs.

I am excited and proud to work with our Chair, Dr. Jon Lehrmann. As past president of the Association for Academic Psychiatry (AAP), a former Residency Training Director, and himself a graduate of our program, Dr. Lehrmann makes education a priority in our department.

I hope you will visit us and see for yourself!