The Whitaker Scholar Program in Developmental Neuropsychiatry

Whitaker Scholars Award Group at Columbia University Medical Center
From left to right: Marisa Spann, PhD; Katharine Stratigos, MD; J. Blake Turner, PhD, Jeremy Veenstra-VanderWeele, MD; Agnes Whitaker, MD; Anna Silberman, MS; and Nina Tioleco, MD

The mission of the Whitaker Scholar Program (WSP) in Developmental Neuropsychiatry is to provide support and mentorship to child psychiatrists and other professionals who seek to better understand and address the historically underserved mental health needs of persons with developmental disability.

The first of its kind in the nation, the Scholar program opened in 2011 with generous support from the Marilyn and James Simon Foundation. It provides one to three years of highly individualized training and mentorship, depending on the interests and goals of the Scholar. Core faculty expertise includes public health, epidemiology, phenomenology, early brain injury, lifespan stress and stress response syndromes, neuroimmunology, brain imaging, neurogenetic syndromes, and genetics. The program also takes advantage of the wide range of resources and faculty available at Columbia University Irving Medical Center, New York State Psychiatric Institute, New York Presbyterian Hospital and the Center for Autism and the Developing Brain. Graduates to date occupy leadership positions in public policy and services, clinical practice and administration, professional education, and research at the intersection of mental health and developmental disability.

Co-Directors: 
Agnes Whitaker, MD 
Jeremy Veenstra-VanderWeele, MD 

Core Faculty: 
Prudence Fisher, PhD
Elisabeth Guthrie, MD
Kelly McGuire, MD, MPA
Rebecca Muhle, MD, PhD
Hannah Reed, MD
Marisa Spann, PhD
Katharine Stratigos, MD
J. Blake Turner, PhD

Coordinator: 
Anna-Lena Jonsson-Cohen (anna-lena.jonsson-cohen@nyspi.columbia.edu)

If you are interested in learning more about the program, please email Agnes Whitaker, MD (agnes.whitaker@nyspi.columbia.edu) and Jeremy Veenstra-VanderWeele, MD (jeremy.veenstra-vanderweele@nyspi.columbia.edu).