Leslie Tarver

Now in my PGY-3 year, I continue to be extremely grateful to be part of the MGH/McLean program. What drew me to the program initially was the incredibly dynamic yet warm and supportive community of residents and staff and this continues to be re-affirmed day after day. As a PGY-3 I have been pleasantly surprised by having significantly more time to delve further into research as part of the RCP research track, hone skills in addictions and psychotherapy, as well as develop more clinical autonomy in managing my own patient panel.

One of the most welcome changes for me as a PGY-3 is the flexibility to manage your time and prioritize the clinical skills or research interests you are most interested in developing. Since starting my third year, I spend about half my time in the outpatient clinic and have a broad range of psychopharmacology and psychotherapy patients. One of the gems of the outpatient experience is the intense amount of supervision from psychotherapy and CBT to addictions which has even entailed careful analysis of video taped therapy sessions with some of the most experienced and insightful senior faculty members. I have also been able to dedicate a substantial focus to my research interests in behavioral health integration and global mental health. As a result of my research experience, I had the opportunity to join a group of global mental health researchers in Washington D.C. to present a platform for expanding access to mental health on the global scale at the IMF-World Bank Spring Meetings. I have also been excited to be involved in research on leveraging internet-based technologies like iCBT to facilitate better integration of mental health in primary care settings. Third year also comes with the unique demands and increased responsibility of being the primary provider for a wide range of outpatients including managing and navigating high risk situations, however the robust level of supervision and support has also made this a rewarding and excellent training experience. I am looking forward to joining the Consult-Liaison service next block and the opportunity to work closely with the outstanding C-L attendings and take my training experience to the next level.

I am constantly impressed by the incredible number of opportunities to get involved with everything from curriculum innovation, new research and advocacy to the psychodynamic psychotherapy dinners at faculty members’ homes. The accessibility of faculty members and willingness to mentor has far exceeded my expectations! It was the dynamic training environment and the rich culture of research and innovation at MGH/McLean that I found extremely impressive and now being here, I have found that all my initial inquiries about getting involved with research have been met with overwhelming enthusiasm. As a third year I have had the opportunity to work more closely with my research mentors to pursue my interests in global mental health and integrated care. There are endless options to participate in seminars and dinner discussions on cutting-edge topics; I never miss the fascinating line-up of speakers at the monthly global psychiatry dinners or the Partners-wide behavioral health meetings! 

Having gone to undergrad at Harvard, coming to Boston for residency has been like coming home! It has been so much fun to re-connect with old friends and also to get to bond with my co-residents exploring the incredible cultural scene and vibrant nightlife in Boston. Add to that the chance to take long walks along the Charles river with my husband and adorable 2.5 year old, Alex and explore the amazing parks around Harvard Square– we could not be more happy in our community in Cambridge! 


George Washington University, M.D., 2014
London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine, M.S.P.H., 2014; Harvard University, B.A., 2005