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General Psychiatry 

  • James Asuncion

    James Asuncion

    James Asuncion is a Southern California native.  He graduated Phi Beta Kappa from UC Berkeley (Go Bears!) and studied Molecular & Cell Biology with emphasis in Neurobiology.  He then joined the UCLA Medical Scientist Training Program where he earned his M.D. and Ph.D. in Neuroscience.  He trained with David Krantz, M.D., Ph.D. during graduate school and researched intracellular trafficking of the vesicular monoamine transporter and monoaminergic signaling in Drosophila fruit flies.  His interests in psychiatry include mood and anxiety disorders, psychosis, interventional modalities, and psychedelics.  Outside of medicine and science, he enjoys coffee roasting, photography, golf, the Los Angeles Lakers, hiking, camping, and spending time with family and friends.
  • Harrison Ballard

    Harrison Ballard

    Harrison Ballard is thrilled to be joining UCSD Psychiatry! He was raised in Central Arkansas and pursued his undergraduate degree in biomedical sciences from Ouachita Baptist University. He completed his MD/MPH from the University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences where he worked on a team investigating the behavioral and biological factors associated with family histories of alcohol use disorder and early-life adversity exposure. During medical school, Harrison served as the president of his local student-run free clinic and was accepted into the Alpha Omega Alpha Honor Society. He is passionate about addiction psychiatry and improving access to treatment for those with substance use disorders. Despite growing up in Arkansas, Harrison loves surfing, along with all things coffee, reading, and music.
  • Erin Carollo

    Erin Carollo

    Erin grew up in Omaha, Nebraska before attending the University of San Diego, where she studied Behavioral Neuroscience. During college, she engaged in advocacy for populations affected by sexual violence and worked for a suicide prevention non-profit. Afterwards, she returned to the Midwest to work in an fMRI lab for a year, where she researched the neural mechanisms underlying various psychopathologies in adolescents. She completed her medical degree at Loyola Stritch School of Medicine, where she enjoyed working with homeless populations in Chicago and was inducted into the Alpha Omega Alpha honors society. Her interests in psychiatry include mood disorders, interventional treatments, and child adolescent psychiatry. In her free time, she enjoys backpacking, live music, and watching animated shows. She is thrilled to return to San Diego and join the UCSD psychiatry community!

  • Justin Creeden

    Justin Creeden

    Justin Creeden earned a combined MD-PhD from the University of Toledo College of Medicine and Life Sciences in Ohio. His research interests include inflammation in mental health contexts, psychopharmacology, and protein kinase signaling cascades. Justin earned a bachelor's degree in cultural anthropology from the University of Michigan and maintains a strong interest in the medical humanities. Before transitioning into the medical sciences, Justin grew up on the East Coast and worked as a classically trained stage actor. 

  • Siddharth Machirju

    Siddharth Machirju

    An Ohio native, Sid Machiraju (he/they) gladly considers himself a San Diego local! His interest in the biological underpinnings of human disease sparked at UC Berkeley, where he majored in Public Health and studied the genetic epidemiology of multiple sclerosis. He then worked in a translational research lab at UCSF for three years prior to starting medical school at UC San Diego School of Medicine. As a medical student, Sid served as leader in the Student-Run Free Clinic and various wellness initiatives, interned at the All of Us Research Program, studied biomarkers of early psychosis at the CARE Program, and led community projects as a member of the Gold Humanism Honor Society. After his third year, Sid pursued an MPH in Quantitative Methods at Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health and studied digital phenotypes in schizophrenia at BIDMC. He is passionate about interventional psychiatry and psychedelic medicine, clinical informatics, tech and innovation, and AAPI and LGBTQ+ mental health. Outside of medicine, Sid enjoys spending time with his partner and their cats, collecting vinyl records, foraging mushrooms, and regularly attending pilates classes.
  • Joshua Mandap

    Joshua Mandap

    Joshua was born and raised in the Sacramento, California area, but left home during high school to spend a couple of years studying in the Philippines. After returning to California, he attended UCSD and graduated with a BS in Microbiology. While in San Diego, he worked in an autism and development lab, designing video games for those who experience inordinate amounts of stress, such as some kids with ASD. He then attended the California University of  Science and Medicine where he graduated with his MD. It was here that Joshua fell in love with the field of psychiatry. He is now incredibly excited to be back in the city where he met his fiance. In his free time, Joshua enjoys cuddling with his cat Momo, and doing escape rooms with his friends.

  • Nathan Sanchez

    Nathan Sanchez

    Nathan is native to the California Inland Empire. During his undergraduate education at UCLA, he earned a BS in neuroscience and minored in biomedical research. He developed a strong interest in mentorship and served as a UCLA peer teacher for pre-medical students who are underrepresented in medicine (URM). He graduated from medical school at UCSF, where he developed a national online mentorship program as mentorship chair in the Latino Medical Student Association (LMSA) West Region. He also served as a tutor in the UCSF Peer Teaching Program. As a resident at UCSD, he is interested in women’s mental health, community psychiatry, interventional psychiatry, and addiction. In his free time, he loves to dance, explore video games, and practice creative writing.
  • Jessica Tiber

    Jessica Tiber

    Jessica Tiber is very excited to join the UCSD Psychiatry Residency Program. As a Southern California native, she is thrilled to be moving home after spending the past ten years in the Northeast. Jessica attended Boston College for her undergraduate studies and majored in biology. Before medical school, she spent time conducting clinical research involving addiction and alcohol metabolism in the Behavioral Psychopharmacology Research Lab at McLean Hospital. While at McLean, Jessica developed a passion for mental health and psychiatry. She joins us from the Frank H. Netter MD School of Medicine at Quinnipiac University. During medical school, she continued to explore her interest in addiction clinical research and psychopharmacology at the Yale Stress Center. Jessica’s interests include women’s mental health/perinatal psychiatry, eating disorders, addiction psychiatry, and psychosis. She enjoys group fitness classes, hiking, live music, movie nights, and she is eager to start exploring San Diego restaurants!

  • Jennifer Wang

    Jennifer Wang

    Jennifer is ecstatic to be returning to her hometown of San Diego for residency. She has been interested in the mental health field since high school, and this curiosity has continuously grown through college at the University of Chicago and medical school at Keck USC SOM. Passionate about advocacy and support, Jennifer is dedicated to de-stigmatization of mental health, within both the broader community and the medical field. Her other major interests include child psychiatry, psychotherapy, and cultural psychiatry. She loves baking and cooking, and she has a good time crocheting amigurumi stuffed animals and doing things with flowers. She tries her best at dancing; she finds it very fun! Jennifer is so grateful to be here and is excited to continue her journey!

  • Guang Yang

    Guang Yang

    Guang is thrilled to be returning to San Diego for the psychiatry residency program! Guang is born in Beijing, China and grew up in Northern California. He attended UC San Diego as an undergraduate student, where he received his B.S. in Physiology & Neuroscience and developed a special interest in psychiatry. He completed his M.D./Ph.D. training at University of Utah. His research focus was on developing a novel induced pluripotent stem cell (iPSC)-derived cerebral organoids model for human brain disorders and applying iPSC-based approaches to characterize patients with autism spectrum disorders and pediatric bipolar disorder. He is very interested in personalized medicine in psychiatry, mood and anxiety disorders, psychotherapy, and neuromodulation. In his free time, Guang enjoys exercising, reading, cooking, video games, and hanging out with his cat.

Community Psychiatry Track

  • Ashley Du

    Ashley Du

    Ashley is a San Diego native and a graduate of the University of California, San Diego where she earned her degree in Biochemistry and Cell Biology. She continued her education and received her Masters of Science while studying the multi-organ effects of chronic e-cigarette inhalation in a mouse model. She then attended medical school at UCSD and conducted research investigating the personality traits of college students who used e-cigarettes. Ashley has spent years working in community settings, holding leadership positions in primary care clinics in Tijuana and the UCSD Free Clinic. She is passionate about providing exceptional mental health care to underrepresented populations to address health care disparities. Her interests include Community psychiatry, Asian American mental health, Addiction, and Women’s Mental Health. She spends her free time enjoying San Diego’s beautiful weather at beaches or parks, reading, and cooking for friends and family.
  • Ryan Elliott

    Ryan Elliott

    Ryan Elliott (he/him) grew up on the Central Coast of California. He received a QuestBridge National College Match scholarship to attend Princeton University, where he earned his BA in ecology and evolutionary biology with certificates in global health and health policy and Latin American studies. He had a non-traditional path to medical school and spent five years working in the public health and non-profit sector. Ryan completed his pre-medical coursework through the Harvard Extension School’s Postbaccalaureate Premedical Program. He attended medical school at UCLA, where he also completed his MPH with a specialization in epidemiology. His interests include child and adolescent psychiatry, community psychiatry, LGBTQ+ mental health, and global mental health. In his free time, Ryan enjoys hiking, running, gardening, traveling, and playing treat chase with his geriatric cat. He is thrilled to embark on this next stage of his training at UCSD and to join UCSD’s thriving community psychiatry ecosystem.


  • Walker Magrath

    Walker Magrath

    Walker Magrath (he/him) is a psychiatry resident with the UCSD Community Psychiatry Track. Originally from Spring Gap, Maryland, Walker completed his undergraduate degree at Columbia University magna cum laude in 2019 studying biomedical engineering. He then earned his M.D. from the Johns Hopkins School of Medicine in 2024. Walker has an interest in LGBTQIA+ equity within psychiatry, the history of medicine, and biotechnology. He hopes to pursue a career in public and community psychiatry, with special interests in HIV/AIDS, forensic psychiatry, and neuromodulation. Walker is a member of the American Osler Society, Tau Beta Pi, the American College of Physicians, and the Association of LGBTQ Psychiatrists. Outside of medicine, Walker plays bluegrass music on the fiddle/violin, enjoys long distance running, and loves spending time outdoors. He's thrilled to be living in San Diego!
  • Claire McLaughlin

    Claire McLaughlin

    Claire McLaughlin was born and raised in North Carolina, where she attended the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill for both undergraduate and medical school. After graduating with a Bachelor of Arts in Economics and Public Policy, she specialized in workforce development in the field of public sector management consulting prior to returning to school at Johns Hopkins University’s Postbaccalaureate Premedical Program. During medical school, she took a year off to pursue a Master of Public Health at the Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health, where she completed coursework on population mental health. Claire is passionate about health equity and stigma reduction, and she is looking forward to partnering with patients and communities in San Diego to support their mental health needs. Outside of medicine, she enjoys knitting, traveling, and spending time with her partner and dogs.

Research  Track

  • Joseph Friedman

    Joseph Friedman

    Joseph joins us from UCLA, where he completed an MD/PhD in Social Medicine. Before that, he studied anthropology at the University of Vermont and undertook a three-year global health data science fellowship at the University of Washington in Seattle. His research focuses on blending ethnography and data science to examine shifting social and epidemiological dynamics in the North American overdose crisis. He did his PhD fieldwork in Tijuana, working with people who use fentanyl and methamphetamine, many of whom were deported from the United States after developing a substance use disorder. He has spent about 5 years total living and working in Latin America, and is excited to be moving to San Diego, where the border is close by. Clinically, he is interested in addiction psychiatry, psychosis, harm reduction, and mobile outreach. In his free time, he enjoys finding balance by getting outside, beach days with his wife, son, and dog, hiking, travelling abroad, learning about languages and cultures, finding new restaurants, and making espresso with friends. 

  • Maribel Patiño

    Maribel Patiño

    Maribel Patiño was born and raised in California. She earned a bachelor's degree in Cell and Molecular Biology, with a focus on Neurobiology, from UC Berkeley (Go Bears!) Her MD/PhD training was completed at UC San Diego, where she conducted her thesis research at the Salk Institute for Biological Studies under the guidance of Dr. Ed Callaway, earning a PhD in Neuroscience. Through the Brain Initiative, she developed neurotechnology that integrates transcriptomics with viral tracing tools to study cortical connectivity at a more granular resolution. Maribel is excited to combine her training in psychiatry and neuroscience to explore the biological foundations of psychiatric disorders, particularly mood disorders and psychosis. She is also passionate about enhancing diversity in science and medicine. During her MD/PhD training, she founded Colors of the Brain (CoB) and the CoB-KIMB Scholars Research Program. Outside of her professional life, she enjoys weightlifting, skateboarding, anime, and spending time with cats.