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The Pine Rest Psychiatry Residency Program Has Filled Its First Intern Class

Recently, nine medical students from across the country were matched with Pine Rest Christian Mental Health Services for the July 1, 2014 start of its first residency class. Pine Rest has been building its Psychiatry Residency Program for the past 18 months, putting all the pieces into place.

Pine Rest’s nine medical students are:  Emina Bajrovic, Michigan State University College of Human Medicine; Rebecca Crosbie, Michigan State University College of Human Medicine; Ryan Doyle, University of New England College of Osteopathic Medicine; Emily Frederiksen, University of Minnesota; Kelsey Lamb, University of Louisville; Jessica O’Mara, Ohio University Heritage College of Osteopathic Medicine; Jeremy Petrous, Michigan State University College of Osteopathic Medicine; Andrew Riegel, Western University College of Osteopathic Medicine; and Ali Saleem, Wayne State University.

The Pine Rest four-year program will have capacity for eight residents per year, post-graduate year one through post-graduate year four for a total of 32 residents in 2017.

“We are hopeful that many of these residents will choose to stay in our community,” says Pine Rest president and CEO Mark Eastburg, Ph.D. Up to 60 percent of new physicians take jobs within 100 miles of their residency program site.

“The need for psychiatry is great both at Pine Rest and in the community,” says Dr. Eastburg. “Both the public and private sectors struggle to meet the demand for psychiatric assessments and treatment for individuals that are in need of psychiatric care.”

Last fall, a total of 1,000 applications were received and 80 students were chosen for interviews. The applicants interviewed with Pine Rest psychiatry residency program director William Sanders, D.O. and two faculty members. The candidates also took a tour of campus and had lunch with core faculty members.

From this process Pine Rest staff members ranked the candidates and the candidates ranked the programs where they interviewed. During the nation-wide “Match Day,” residents and residency programs learned how they were matched.

“I cannot begin to express how excited I am that our program has matched a truly incredible and talented first year class of residents. We attracted very competitive and accomplished medical students from across the country,” says Dr. Sanders. “These students have a sincere passion and drive to become excellent psychiatrists. Having met them, I can say they each possess the essential traits of kindness, compassion and intelligence. They each have their own unique spirited personality and I can’t wait to get to know them better.”

Medical school graduates are required to complete a residency before entering practice. Pine Rest offers residents the opportunity to work in an inpatient, outpatient and residential environment. Working within the complete continuum of behavioral health services in the same organization is unique.

Residency for psychiatrists consists of didactic and experiential training. Clinical rotations include psychiatric inpatient and outpatient care, general medicine experience, consultation liaison in acute care hospitals and exposure to neurology. The residents will be assigned to a dedicated adult inpatient teaching unit at Pine Rest. Rotations will also include the child and adolescent unit, and geriatric unit.

“We are accomplishing something very special by training future generations of psychiatrists. These young learners will be instrumental in behavioral health medicine’s future. I am humbled and excited to serve a meaningful role in building the residency,” says Dr. Sanders. “Pine Rest has dedicated a tremendous amount of resources to develop this residency for the greater good of our community. The administration at Pine Rest deserves a tremendous amount of credit for their foresight and courage.”




About Pine Rest

Pine Rest, one of the five largest free-standing behavioral health providers in the U.S., has served the greater Grand Rapids and national community for more than 100 years. It offers a full continuum of services including inpatient and partial hospitalization, residential and outpatient services, addiction treatment and recovery, extensive child and adolescent programs, senior care services, as well as specialized assessment and treatment clinics. In addition to the main campus in Grand Rapids, Pine Rest also has 17 outpatient locations throughout West Michigan and two in Iowa. For more information, go to