Letter from the Residency Program Director
UT Southwestern Medical Center has a decades-long commitment to producing the best possible scholarship in all areas of medicine and bringing that to bear on the training of outstanding ,evidence-oriented clinicians and the provision of excellent clinical care to patients. We implement this commitment in our General Psychiatry Training Program by integrating outstanding basic and clinical researchers with excellent clinicians in all areas of psychiatry to provide residents with state-of-the-art knowledge and clinical experiences. We strive to graduate our residents at the cutting edge of all aspects of psychiatry.
UT Southwestern’s residents are exposed to a wide variety of systems of psychiatric care and patient populations. Affiliates include one of the premier county hospitals in the country (Parkland Memorial Hospital), a private university hospital (Zale Lipshy), a Veteran’s hospital that is one of the VA’s academic flagship centers (Dallas Veterans Affairs Medical Center), a private tertiary care pediatric hospital (Children' s Medical Center), two university student health centers, and an innovative public-private community psychiatry system (Northstar and Metrocare). The program involves every resident in each setting in a coherent plan balancing patient care and education. Diversity of settings allows the resident to care for the widest possible range of patients by diagnosis, by ethnic background, by socio-economic status, and by locality.
Excellence in All Areas of Psychiatry
With 130 full time faculty and 140 voluntary faculty, we have expertise in virtually all areas pertinent to modern psychiatric practice, ranging from psychoanalysis to neurobiology to psychiatric epidemiology. This includes areas rarely found in psychiatry departments, such as medical ethics, health economics, family systems studies, psychotherapy research, neurogenesis, and psychoneuroendocrinology. Not only is our faculty diverse as a whole, but we also take special joy in collaborating across interest areas. The Department's ethos is reflected in such papers as "Should Psychotherapy be Considered a Biological Treatment."
A Commitment to the Resident’s Quality of Life
We believe that optimal patient care is provided by psychiatrists who have balanced and satisfying lives. We constantly look for ways to support our residents in this pursuit. This includes the many activities run by our vigorous Psychiatry Residents Organization, including a ‘Big Siblings’ program, social activities, a weekly lunch meeting, a yearly retreat day, and a regular movie night. The residency offers a process group (‘T-Group’) in every year of the program, an important source of peer support that is led by experienced group therapists.
Education at the Cutting Edge - Evidence Based Psychiatry
We view the presence and involvement of internationally recognized researchers as central to providing our residents with the latest, most advanced evidence based clinical tools, to prepare them to administer treatments yet to come. The department's exciting research programs include:
- Psychotherapy research, including individual and family
- Molecular genetics of addictions
- Imaging in schizophrenia, affective illness, and other mental disorders
- Neurobiology of various psychiatric illnesses
- Neuroplasticity and adult neurogenesis
- Dopamine in brains of schizophrenia and Alzheimer’s
- ECT and MST in treatment resistant mood disorder
- Neurobiology of genetic vulnerability to stress
- Neurobiology of feeding and behavior
- Neuronal signal transduction processes
- Sleep and arousal mechanisms, circadian rhythms, and the molecular clock
- Dissemination and implementation research, including medication algorithms
- Treatment resistance in mood disorders, bipolar disorder, depression, anxiety, and substance abuse
- Effectiveness of interventions in ‘real world’ settings
- Psychiatric Epidemiology
Perhaps the most exciting area in psychiatry is in the translational research between the basic sciences and the clinical domains. Our department's work in the neuroendocrinology of mood, brain imaging of addictive disorders, the neurobiology of sleep and appetite, and the cognitive neuroscience of stress produces a picture of disorders and treatments that spans psychiatry's disparate domains.
Breadth of Exposure and Diversity of Careers
UT Southwestern graduates are prepared to go in any direction they choose, having been exposed in depth, with appreciative understanding, to every area within psychiatry. We offer ACGME-accredited fellowships in Child and Adolescent Psychiatry, Geriatric Psychiatry, Addictions Psychiatry, Psychosomatic Psychiatry, and Sleep Medicine – some of our graduates elect to pursue these fellowships with us or elsewhere.
In recent years residents have gone on to private practice, basic or clinical research careers, psychoanalytic training, academic appointments all over the country, and public psychiatry. We welcome applicants with any of these aspirations (or others we haven’t yet thought of), and strive to help each resident define his/her individual interests and build a career plan that is personally fulfilling.