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Class of 2021

William Andrew, DO

California, born and raised! I spent most of my days reading sci-fi/fantasy books, falling in love with Disney movies, and playing sports. Inspired by my Athletic Trainer and teacher, Glen Barker, I attended UC San Diego to study Human Biology. There, I completed a sports medicine internship and through our very own Dr. Michael Kurisu, discovered osteopathic manual medicine. After one year working as an EMT, I moved to the Midwest to study at the Chicago College of Osteopathic Medicine. During that time, I trained as an Osteopathic Medicine Scholar under the wing of Dr. Kurt Heinking. My experiences during medical school, including post-op acupuncture, Cook County Hospital in their rendition of the Psychiatric Service Tango, and a medical mission trip to Guatemala, broadened my interests to include integrative, behavioral, and global medicine and much more!

I am thrilled to return to San Diego - there and back again - as a member of an incredible Family Medicine Team. A program I chose because of the strength of its academic and community presence, an opportunity for sports and manual medicine mentorship, and a dedication to preventative and patient-first care.

As a part of UC San Diego’s FMRP, I am excited to have the chance to contribute to our service. As a lifelong student, a grateful son, and a proud brother. An avid crossfitter, dog enthusiast, adventurer, and Hufflepuff. Father to the goodest dog. Husband to an amazing wife. My small family looks forward to being part of this big one. The family that is this program, this city, and this community. I am very much looking forward to continuing my journey and growing together with you!

Paul Delgado, MD

Hello! I grew up in the Bay Area for the first fourteen years of my life followed by North County San Diego where my family still lives today. My first clinical exposure to medicine was through a scribing experience in the emergency department near my home, and it was at this time when I decided to pursue medicine as a career. I majored in Ecology and Evolutionary Biology at UCLA, and I worked for the UCLA Medicine-Pediatrics clinic during my gap year prior to medical school.

I attended UC Davis School of Medicine and was involved in the Willow Clinic serving the homeless population of Sacramento. It was here where I developed and fostered an interest in primary care, care for the underserved, and ultimately Family Medicine.

UCSD FMRP has everything I want in a residency program: supportive faculty and residents, a diverse patient population, different tracks for residents to explore, and proximity to my family and the beach! Upon completion of my fourth-year away rotation at UCSD, I knew UCSD Family Medicine was the program for me.
Outside of medicine, I enjoy following the Golden State Warriors, running to a good Spotify playlist, cycling, playing chess, and hanging out with my springer spaniel, Karl.

Fun fact about me: I had my first cup of coffee as a fourth-year medical student, and sadly, I am now addicted.

Alyssa DelPizzo, MD

Hi! My name is Alyssa DelPizzo and I was born and raised in Denver, Colorado. As a young kid, I had two big career ambitions, to be a doctor and to be a professional soccer player. The latter did not work out due to a number of knee injuries I had playing in high school and college. While I was disappointed when the dream of my career as an athlete ended, it was a blessing in disguise. I decided to put all my competitive energy into becoming a doctor. I graduated from Colorado State University with a degree in Health and Exercise Science. From there I wasted no time in starting medical school at Ross University. I felt called to attend this school where I spent the first year and a half studying abroad in a third world country. Medical mission work in an impoverished setting was always a desire of mine and this experience helped to further deepen that passion. 

When it came time to decide where I wanted to attend Residency, UCSD was at the top of my list for a couple of reasons. My boyfriend lives out here and the first time I came to visit, I knew right away that San Diego and I would get along just fine! The temperate climate, abundance of outdoor activities, and craft breweries galore were just a few reasons why this city was a great fit. My experience with the Residency Program further confirmed my decision. Everyone I met was kind and genuinely excited to talk about the opportunities this program had to offer. Other residents seemed like-minded to me in the fact that they had unique stories about studying or living abroad and how those experiences enhanced their love for medicine.

I chose Family Medicine because it allows me to see a broad spectrum of patients and medical conditions all in the same day. Whether managing a newborn or caring for an elderly patient, I am thrilled to see it all and stay on my toes for what might walk through the door next. My specific interests within family medicine are women’s health, pediatrics, sports medicine and integrative medicine.

Outside of work I have been challenged with and enjoyed finding new hobbies and outlets. Relationships are important and I commit myself to spending quality time with my family and friends as much as I can. In addition, I have found that things like yoga, body pump, gardening, cooking, craft beer, and a hot day at the beach are all things that keep me balanced and grounded.

I am looking forward to the challenges, adventures, and opportunities that lie ahead in Residency. My hope is that this time will aid in learning more about myself and the people that I will care for, while simultaneously living a life that is congruent to the advice I give my patients. I am so excited to begin this next chapter!

Michelle Doscas, MD

I grew up on Long Island, right outside of New York City, in a sports crazed family– Go Yankees! I was an adventure-loving middle child with two equally energetic brothers, which led to frequent emergency department visits for various scrapes and breaks. There, I first discovered my natural curiosity and interest in medicine.

I later traveled to Nashville, TN and completed my undergraduate degree in Child Development and Medicine, Health, and Society at Vanderbilt University. Through my studies I was exposed to medicine through a variety of lenses and made the decision to attend medical school.  While working on my application and completing prerequisite courses, I worked as a program coordinator for a nonprofit called Health Leads, an organization that works to connect families to healthcare related resources. Through this experience, I first appreciated the colossal impact of psychosocial determinants on a patient’s health. When I got to medical school, choosing family medicine as my specialty was an easy choice – it combined my interests in treating patients of all ages as well as working to understand the patient as a whole.

My interests within family medicine include sports medicine, adolescent medicine, LGBTQ health and working within the community. In my free time, I love playing and watching sports, trying new restaurants and traveling. I’m really looking forward to living in San Diego and taking advantage of the beaches, year-round outdoor soccer and the beer scene.

Berenice Jimenez, MD

Both of my parents were born in Mexico and came to the United States with the idea of giving their children the opportunity for the best possible education. They started a family in San Diego; my sister and I were born and raised here. Although my parents always stressed the importance of education, they also valued compassion, understanding, and family. It was a great way to grow up.

After high school, I moved away from the sunny shores of San Diego to attended Princeton University where I earned my Bachelors in Psychology. I moved back to San Diego and started volunteering at the UCSD Student-Run Free Clinic Project. This experience was the impetus that inspired me to study medicine. The students and doctors showed nothing but compassion and respect as they provided excellent medical care to their patients, and I wanted to learn how to do the same. I attended the UCSD School of Medicine in order to follow my passion for primary care.

I chose to study Family Medicine in order to provide a wide range of care to a diverse community. I am excited to be part of the UCSD Family Medicine Residency where I can learn in both an academic and community setting. I look forward to my training here in San Diego.

Julie Rivo, MD

I grew up in diverse, quirky and sunny Miami Beach, FL. As the daughter of an adventurous family doc and a public health nurse, I learned early of the immense quality of life gaps in my own neighborhood. Although I apparently declared in high school that I would pursue medicine in order to wear scrubs daily, I was also drawn to experiences to contextualize social determinants of health- volunteering in a local ED, spending a summer in rural Nicaragua and serving in a national student-run political engagement organization. At Duke University, I designed an undergrad major in Global Health that took me to Haiti for research and northern Chile to study the health system. Prior to medical school, I worked as an HIV tester, counselor and educator for the Latinx LGBT community at La Clinica del Pueblo in Washington D.C through AmeriCorps and AIDS United. Already with my heart solidly in primary care, I returned to Duke for medical school to be a part of its Primary Care Leadership Track and to devote a year to research. I was fortunate to do maternal/child health research for a year at the Institute for Clinical Effectiveness and Health Policy (IECS) in Buenos Aires, Argentina through an NIH Fogarty fellowship.

For me, family medicine is the ideal antidote to the preventable suffering, largely stemming from persistent health and socioeconomic inequities. Personally, I can channel my passion for life- for dancing and movement, for promoting social connectedness, for using food as medicine- into a holistic approach to wellbeing. I could not be more thrilled and grateful to train at a program living these values within a strong and innovative family medicine department and in a diverse community with unique health challenges.

In my free time, I am taking advantage of sunshine and living near the beach again:  biking, swimming, dancing -mostly Latin now-, traveling, learning Portuguese, spending time with friends and exploring this beautiful city!

Zara Sheikh, MD

I spent my early years in San Jose, Brooklyn and Central California (FRESYES aka Fresno!). My parents, both of whom immigrated from Pakistan, always emphasized the importance of higher education and I knew early on that I wanted to pursue medicine. After finishing high school in Fresno, I journeyed to Northern California and attended UC Berkeley, where I studied Integrative Biology with an emphasis on human biology and health sciences and minored in anthropology.

I then made my way to the Midwest and attended medical school at the University of Cincinnati. I hoped to pursue a specialty which provided holistic care with the goal of increasing access for marginalized communities. After finding a phenomenal mentor, I chose to pursue family medicine due to its emphasis on social justice, whole person care and addressing social factors that intersect with physical and mental health. I appreciate the opportunity to be able to provide care across the lifespan and to help patients address and alleviate the social factors that negatively impact their health.

My specific interests in family medicine include providing care to underserved communities including those with severe mental illness, immigrant communities and refugees, as well as outpatient procedures. I am also very interested in the intersection of religion and spirituality with medicine. Outside of medicine, I enjoy spending time with family and friends, reading, hiking, going to the beach, and being a plant mom (I have a collection of over 30 houseplants!). 

Haran Sivakumar, MD

I was born and raised in the Bay Area and moved to Los Angeles to attend USC School of Cinematic Arts thinking I wanted to be a filmmaker. But film school didn't go as expected. Although I affirmed a love for storytelling, I realized I didn't want to just tell characters' stories; I wanted to play an active role in shaping them.  And when I was commissioned to make a documentary for a Bay Area hospital, that exposure confirmed medicine would be my career. I was fortunate to attend the Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai via an Arts and Humanities admission program. There I discovered family medicine and the joys of partnering with patients of all ages and being their point of contact through acute and chronic conditions. I love that family medicine allows us to specialize and become experts in our patients rather than a particular field of medicine. And with that comes a unique doctor-patient relationship and the ability to provide holistic, individualized care to patients.

UC San Diego has been the perfect place to train as a family doctor. We get the best of both worlds as a large academic institution with a strong history of family medicine. We get to work with our impressive family medicine faculty in our own inpatient and obstetrics services as well as traditional outpatient clinics with robust procedure experience. We also get to rotate and learn from leading national specialists at UCSD and get great exposure to other health systems in San Diego including community programs, a large HMO and military sites. Our training is uniquely diverse in both the patient populations and the overall clinical site exposures.

My interests in family medicine include cardiovascular prevention, nutrition, weight management, behavioral medicine, and addiction medicine. I've been able to pursue all my clinical interests thanks in large part to our program's flexibility in allowing me to tailor my clinical pursuits. When not working, I love exploring San Diego's beaches, trying new restaurants, enjoying our year-round sunshine, and catching up on movies.