Teacher Spotlight

The Department of Psychiatry at the UC San Diego School of Medicine is committed to academic excellence and diversity within our faculty, staff and student body. We seek to recruit and retain leaders who are a reflection of our strong commitment to achieving excellence. Our faculty continuously demonstrate their commitment to maintain the highest standards of scholarship and professional activities while developing a climate that supports learning, equality, and diversity. They are leaders in their field, providing exceptional mental health care and training, and they exemplify this through their everyday duties in clinics, laboratories, teaching, and mentorship.

It is an honor to showcase a top member of our clinical-educator and research-mentorship teams each month who demonstrate leadership qualities through our monthly “Teacher Spotlight.” We want to acknowledge and thank them for their hard work and continuous efforts in the field of Psychiatry, and for their commitment to educating our trainees.

 The Office of Psychiatry Education & Training

June 2019 Teacher Spotlight:

Elizabeth Twamley, Ph.D., Professor Elizabeth Twamley, Ph.D., Professor

Why do you love teaching/mentorship? There is nothing more satisfying than knowing you were able to help someone get to the next level of their academic career. Whether it’s undergraduate research volunteers, medical students, clinical psychology doctoral students, or postdoctoral fellows, teaching is truly the highlight of my week, every week.

What piece of advice do you have for mentors when in a mentorship relationship? Be as transparent as possible and put everything on the table. People tend to reject help they don’t want, so I always want to know what kind of help my mentees want and how much of it they want. The only way I can know this is to have periodic open conversations about their goals. Assuming I know, or guessing they want to be just like me, is not likely to result in the most productive or satisfying mentoring relationship. I also like to take some time to elicit feedback about how I’m doing as a mentor at least once every few months. I ask my mentees what I can do to make their academic lives easier or more satisfying, in hopes that if I elicit feedback regularly, they’ll become more comfortable giving feedback and asking for feedback themselves.

What piece of advice do you have for mentees when in a mentorship relationship? Keep your eyes on the prize – that is, stay focused on the career you want to achieve, and work with your mentor to overtly link your scholarly activities to your ultimate career goals.



Past Teacher Spotlights

August 2017

Alison Trexler, MD Alison Trexler, MD, Attending Psychiatrist

June 2017

Sidney Zisook, M.D. Sidney Zisook, M.D., Professor

May 2017

Vanessa L. Lauzon, M.D. Vanessa L. Lauzon, MD, Assistant Clinical Professor

March 2017

Stephen Groban, MD, H.S. Stephen Groban, MD, H.S. Clinical Professor

July 2016

Dan Sewell, M.D. Dan Sewell, M.D., Clinical Professor

June 2016

Alana Iglewicz, M.D. Alana Iglewicz, M.D., Associate Residency Training Director; Assistant Clinical Professor

May 2016

Terry Schwartz, M.D. Terry Schwartz, M.D., Assistant Clinical Professor

April 2016

Larry Malak, M.D. Larry Malak, M.D., Assistant Clinical Professor

March 2016

Sanjai Rao, M.D. Sanjai Rao, M.D., Assistant Clinical Professor

February 2016

Louisa Steiger, M.D. Louisa R. Steiger, M.D., M.P.H., HS Clinical Assistant Professor

January 2016

David Lehman, M.D. David Lehman, M.D., H.S., Associate Clinical Professor