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Primary Care Residents

The diversity of backgrounds and experiences amongst Weill Cornell Primary Care residents fosters a rich dynamic in which residents learn from each other on both professional and personal levels. All share an underlying dedication to primary care that unites our "Primary Care family" in a special way.

PGY-1

Dr. Christina Pugliese
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Christina Pugliese, M.D.

Hi there! I grew up in Ottawa and went to undergrad at McMaster University where I studied Biology and Psychology. After graduating, I spent six months backpacking in India, Nepal, and Southeast Asia, then worked for a year as a high school science teacher in Guatemala. I then worked for two years in clinical research before attending medical school at George Washington University. As a medical student, I was part of the global health track and took a year off to do malaria research in West and Central Africa. What drew me most to the Primary Care Program at Cornell was its extended ambulatory curriculum, focus on research, and the genuine warmth and support I felt from the residents and faculty I met on my interview day. I am interested in global health, infectious diseases, and working with vulnerable populations. Outside of the hospital, I enjoy reading, doing crosswords, cooking, drinking coffee, and going on walks in Central Park with my fiancé.

Dr. Rachel Tenney
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Rachel Tenney, M.D.

Hello and welcome to Cornell Primary Care! I grew up an hour and a half outside of San Francisco in Gilroy- the garlic capital of the world! I attended University of California, Berkeley for undergrad, where I majored in Integrative Biology and minored in Anthropology. After college, I taught middle school science in San Jose, California through Teach for America. After teaching, I spent two years conducting qualitative and qualitative research at the San Francisco VA Medical Center. Hearing the stories and wisdom of study participants sealed the deal on a career in medicine for me. I attended the University of California, San Francisco for medical school, and was drawn to the Cornell Primary Care program for residency, both because it is located in vibrant NYC, and because within minutes of meeting the program directors and current residents I felt the sense of community and support that characterizes the Cornell Primary Care program. In my future career, I hope to work with underserved populations and be involved with medical education. Clinically, I am broadly interested in addiction medicine, pain and symptom management, and the management of chronic diseases. Outside of medicine, I love discovering new coffee shops, bookstores, thrift shops, and parks (my favorite isn't actually Central Park!) on long walks around the city. I look forward to meeting you and welcoming you to the Cornell Primary Care program!

Dr. Jared Silberlust
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Jared Silberlust, M.D., M.P.H.

Hi! I'm Jared--I'm from Long Island, NY, and I'm thrilled with the opportunity to train here at NYP-Cornell. I studied engineering, medicine, and public health down at the University of Miami, and I hope to combine these disciplines to improve patient care in my career as a physician. I believe that improvements in medical technologies, like telemedicine, mobile health, and electronic medical records, have the ability to target the upstream determinants of health and reduce disparities in care delivery. I ranked Cornell's Primary Care program at the top of my list because of the dedicated mentorship, structured project opportunities, and small-group feel (with an awesome group of people!) within our large academic medical center. On my time off, I'll be watching my teams lose at a Mets or Jets game, hanging out with my family and friends doing things in the city, or flying down to south Florida to play 18 holes.

Dr. Linda Yu
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Linda Yu, M.D.

Hi there! I grew up in the Bay Area in California and lived in San Francisco prior to making the inevitable cross-country move to experience – firsthand – the vibrancy of New York City. I chose Cornell’s Primary Care track because I felt, even from a virtual interview day, that the program was centered around tailoring our residency experience to our unique interests. I was also looking for a smaller community within the residency to thoughtfully process the complexities and challenges of learning and practicing medicine. Within medicine, I love thinking about everything from immigrant health, to the intricacies of patient-provider communication, to the ways that we as physicians can best assure that our patients are receiving care that is aligned with their values. Outside of medicine, I can usually be found exploring the city by foot, looking for small businesses to support, ordering dishes off menus I’ve never tried before, and in time, soaking in the music and arts scene this city is known for.

PGY-2

Dr. Megan Creasman
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Megan Creasman, M.D.

I grew up in Berkeley, CA and studied Neurobiology and Modern Thought & Literature at Stanford before attending UC San Francisco School of Medicine. After discovering Cornell's Primary Care program I knew I had no choice but to pick up and move across the country. I was drawn to the opportunities to focus in an ambulatory specialty, the support for meaningful research, and the rich, engaged community. I am interested in rheumatology, community-based participatory research, and increasing patient participation in health decision-making. I feel fortunate to have joined Dr. Iris Navarro-Millan's CARE-RA research team, studying how patient education and peer coaching improves cardiovascular screening in the rheumatoid arthritis population. In my free time you can find me reading and writing fiction, or exploring the city's parks and libraries.

Dr. Melina Manolas
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Melina Manolas, M.D.

Hi, I'm Melina! I'm from Long Island, NY and I studied Human Development and Design at Cornell undergrad. My interest in medicine stemmed from various opportunities in education that highlighted health disparities - from working as an ESL instructor to adult Latino immigrants to teaching 6th grade math with AmeriCorps. I pursued an MD/MPH at Tulane after falling in love with the resilient city of New Orleans and its overall mission of service to others, with the intention of gaining tangible skills in community health.

Throughout my intern year, I found great satisfaction in outpatient medicine and longitudinal, preventive care. I enjoyed seeing my patients in their "regular" clothes, with the goal of keeping them out of a hospital gown. For these reasons, in addition to the unparalleled individual mentorship structure and value-based career guidance, I switched from Cornell's categorical program to the primary care track. The track has opened doors for me by putting me "in the room" with the important actors in the fields I care about, and has given me the flexibility to pursue interests in endocrinology and medical education without becoming lost in the sea of experiences residency has to offer. My ultimate goal is to become a clinician educator with a focus on social determinants of health and the utility of social media digital platforms for learning and storytelling. Follow me on #MedTwitter @Melina_Manolas! Outside of medicine, I enjoy exploring new restaurants, watching foreign reality TV, and curating new music for my Spotify playlists.

Dr. Lauren Mitchell
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Lauren Mitchell, M.D.

I grew up outside Chicago, then attended Harvard for undergrad where I majored in Linguistics. After college, I worked for a year in Peru with Partners In Health, then spent a year in Chicago working with the Affordable Care Act, then spent a year working a sexual assault hotline. I went to Harvard for medical school, where I took (yet another) year off to do depression research in India. I felt the pull of the magic of New York City and I loved the Cornell primary care program – the supportive clinical learning environment, the strong focus on research, and the wonderful people I met when interviewing made it my number one choice! I am interested in working with underserved populations through primary care practice and my research interests lie in the role of community health workers in managing chronic diseases. Outside of the hospital, I like dining out, walking around the city, and vintage/thrift shopping. Please let me know if you have any questions – I’d be happy to talk anytime!

Dr. Kara Ryan
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Kara Ryan, M.D.

Hi, I’m Kara! I grew up in Marshfield, Massachusetts, then went to college at Boston University where I majored in human physiology before attending Tufts University School of Medicine. After 26 years in Massachusetts, I finally left Boston for New York City and matched into the categorical track here at Cornell. While I navigated intern year, I felt most fulfilled by the relationships I was developing with my patients at WCIMA. That, plus the robust mentorship and community afforded by being a smaller program within a program drew me to switch into the Primary Care Track and I’m so happy I did!

I’m interested in addiction medicine, particularly the treatment of opioid use disorder and harm reduction strategies as well as helping to shape medical education in substance use disorders to ensure these patients receive compassionate and equitable care in every medical encounter. On my days off, I can be found running in Central Park and/or getting ice cream at Emack and Bolio’s.

Dr. Brittany Toffey
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Brittany Toffey, M.D.

I grew up in a town in New Jersey. I attended Dartmouth College, where I studied biochemistry. After college, I attended Rutgers New Jersey Medical School, where I received my MD/MPH. I am passionate about epidemiology, primary care, and preventative health. I was attracted to the Cornell PC family because of the enthusiasm and support of the residents and faculty. I was very fortunate to match at Cornell PC and join a talented, amazing group of people. When I am not in the hospital, I love to run, hike, and travel.

Dr. Raymond Zou
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Raymond Zou, M.D.

Hello! I was born and raised in NYC. I went to the Sophie Davis School of Biomedical Education/CUNY School of Medicine program after high school, where I developed my passion for primary care. When looking for a primary care program, I wanted one that had extensive outpatient training, a tight-knit community feeling, and strong mentorship. I found all of that at Cornell. As an intern last year, the PC residents and program directors made me feel welcome from day one. The strong sense of support and warmth I felt on interview day has continued into my daily life as a resident at Cornell. Some of the toughest rotations were made easier because of the support I had from the PC residents. Outside of the hospital, I truly enjoy spending time with my PC co-residents whether it be hanging out after work or going to fire island during our break between intern year and PGY-2!

As for my interests, I plan on pursuing a Sports Medicine fellowship after residency. Outside of medicine, I enjoy working out, cooking, and trying out different Omakase restaurants.

PGY-3

Dr. Mara Bensson
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Mara Bensson, M.D.

I grew up in Attleboro, Massachusetts and went to Colby College for undergrad where I majored in Biology. After graduating, I moved to Connecticut where I worked as a middle school science teacher for two years with Teach for America. I then spent two years doing more clinically focused work before going to medical school at Brown University. I loved the Weill Cornell Primary Care program immediately because of the energy, compassion, and enthusiasm I found in the residents and faculty. I'm so excited to be a part of the program because I have the ability and support to explore my interests in primary care which include women's health, patient education, and working with the underserved. Apart from medicine, I love traveling, enjoying delicious restaurants, and spending time with my new kittens.

Dr. Erica Corredera
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Erica Corredera, M.D.

Hi, I am Erica! My family is from Cuba and I grew up in Miami, FL. I studied microbiology at the University of Florida and went on to study medicine at the University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine. The great sense of community and incredible mentorship is what drew me to our primary care track; I joined the track during my second year at NYP-Cornell. Aside from hospital medicine and primary care, my interests include medical education and caring for the Hispanic patient population. I adore serving my Spanish-speaking patients at WCIMA and at our Federally Qualified Health Center in LIC. Outside of residency, I enjoy spending time with my puppy, musical theater, running through Central Park, checking out new restaurants, and exploring this very special city!

Dr. Melanie Koren
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Melanie Koren, M.D.

Hello! I was born in South Korea and grew up in the Great Pacific NW. I studied English and an interdisciplinary major called Science in Society at Wesleyan University. My path to medicine, however, began during my first ever job wait-staffing at an assisted living center. Since then, I’ve been pursuing opportunities to work with older adults and those nearing end-of-life. I’m currently thrilled to be applying for a fellowship in Palliative Medicine and am especially interested in interdisciplinary collaborations between Palliative Care and other subspecialties. Outside of the hospital, I am passionate about advocating for those experiencing homelessness and finding new ways to stay active. This is now my 7th year in New York City, as I was just up the road at the Albert Einstein College of Medicine for medical school. I knew from day one that Cornell would be an amazing place to train and continue to absolutely love this program. The people and support for learning are phenomenal. Please feel free to reach out with any questions at all!

Dr. Kerry Meltzer
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Kerry Meltzer, M.D.

I grew up in Baltimore and then went to Bowdoin College, where I majored in biology and played on the varsity rugby team. During college, I interned at the White House Office of Health Reform to explore my interest in health policy. After graduating, I worked at the NIH on hepatitis C clinical trials and stayed in D.C. for medical school at George Washington University, where I was in the health policy track, and fell in love with primary care.

I was impressed with the numerous opportunities available to me at the NYP-Cornell Primary Care program, including the chance to have my outpatient practice at a Federally Qualified Health Center. The faculty and residents have been incredibly supportive and have made me feel right at home. During residency, I've continued my interest in health policy, high-value care, and writing. In my free time, I like to run and bike through Central Park, search for the best ice cream in New York City, and play with my puppy, Tivvy!

Dr. Xin Wang
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Xin Wang, M.D.

Hi! I was born in China, and grew up in a small town near Tampa, FL before venturing out to Southern California for undergraduate at Pomona College, where I studied neuroscience and Japanese language/literature. I then spent two years working for a nonprofit organization focusing on community health/education in rural Alabama, before attending UCLA for medical school. I chose to apply to primary care programs because I enjoy continuity of care, and wanted specialized training in outpatient medicine. NYP-Cornell became my #1 choice after my interview day due to the sense of camaraderie/support I felt during my visit, as well as the individualized curriculum targeted to help prepare you for your future aspirations. I am grateful to be able to pursue my residency here at NYP-Cornell, with supportive faculty, wonderful co-residents, and an extremely diverse patient population. During residency, I continued exploring my interest in outpatient medicine specifically rheumatology and working with vulnerable populations. My hobbies include eating my way throughout the boroughs, cooking/baking, and occasionally exercising to balance it out. Please feel free to reach out with any questions!

Contact Information

Mailing Address

NewYork-Presbyterian Hospital/
Weill Cornell Medical Center
Weill Department of Medicine 
525 East 68th Street, Box 130
New York, NY 10065

Residency Office

530 East 70th Street, M-507
New York, NY 10021
Tel: (212) 746-4749
NYPCornell-IMResidency
@med.cornell.edu

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