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Program Year 1 Interns
Karim Hajjar, M.D.
Medical School: American University of Beirut, Lebanon
Undergrad: American University of Beirut, Lebanon
Activities/Hobbies: backpacking, the outdoors, basketball, swimming
Home Country: Lebanon
Why Johns Hopkins: I chose Johns Hopkins looking for an opportunity to work with an underserved population. I love that the program is so dedicated to teaching its residents and is able to provide all the resources needed to explore my interests.
Karim Hajjar was born and raised in Lebanon, and it was in his school years there that he discovered his love for pranks. His interests then shifted to backpacking and being outdoors. After attending medical school, Karim spent one year doing research in emergency medicine. When he’s not too busy mourning the Knicks’ loss, Karim enjoys practicing his Spanish with his dog, Jude.
Jordan Harris, M.D.
Medical School: University of Michigan
Undergrad: Eastern Washington University
Activities/Hobbies: traveling internationally with my wife, backpacking and bouldering
Home State: Idaho
Why Johns Hopkins: I chose Johns Hopkins because the residency program was an absolute slam dunk for me! The residents and staff whom I connected with on interview day were incredibly welcoming, friendly and down-to-earth, which made it my favorite interview day of the season. The combination of the FAST Program plus the amazing global health faculty within the department of emergency medicine make Johns Hopkins second to none from a global health and international emergency medicine standpoint. Finally, the diversity and acuity of the patient population in Baltimore sealed the deal for me.
Jordan Harris was born and raised in Idaho Falls, Idaho. He graduated with a bachelor’s degree in biology from Eastern Washington University in 2008. Before matriculating to the University of Michigan Medical School, he lived several different lives — he worked as a wildlife technician in Yosemite National Park, taught biology and physical science in Malawi with the U.S. Peace Corps, worked as a medical assistant in northern Idaho and was an avid international budget backpacker. During this period, he discovered his passion for helping the underserved and decided to pursue a medical education in order to do so. He continued to work internationally throughout medical school and plans to further develop his skills in emergency medicine and global health while at Johns Hopkins.
Michael M. Hsu, M.D., M.A.
Medical school: University of California San Diego School of Medicine
Graduate: University of Cambridge, England
Undergrad: United States Naval Academy
Activities/Hobbies: travel, mountaineering, aerospace
Home State: Tennessee
Why Johns Hopkins: diverse patients, wonderful colleagues and faculty, the history of Baltimore
Michael Hsu was born in Charlotte, North Carolina, and raised in Clarksville, Tennessee. He attended the United States Naval Academy in Annapolis, Maryland, graduating with a degree in systems engineering, and lived in Cambridge, England, for two years, completing a master’s degree in natural sciences. He served in the U.S. Navy as a naval aviator and test pilot. After working in disaster relief in Banda Aceh, Indonesia, he realized his desire to practice medicine. He attended University of California San Diego School of Medicine, where he developed interests in wilderness medicine and ultrasound. He hopes to continue pursuing these interests during residency at Johns Hopkins. Michael enjoys travel, the outdoors, and spending time with his wife, Courtney, and son, James.
Kyle Jones, M.D.
Medical School: University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center
Undergrad: Texas A&M University
Activities/Hobbies: scuba, attempting to golf, soccer, fishing, exercise
Home State: Texas
Why Johns Hopkins: I chose Johns Hopkins for the diverse patient population and pathology, resources available to both patients and residents, and a focus on professional development. I have a very strong interest in prehospital medicine, particularly tactical medicine, and Johns Hopkins has amazing programs to pursue these interests.
Kyle Jones was born in Dallas, Texas, and grew up in nearby Plano. He graduated from Texas A&M University with a Bachelor of Science degree. Upon graduation, he was commissioned in the U.S. Marine Corps, where he spent six years on active duty and saw combat deployments to Iraq and Afghanistan. After leaving active duty, Kyle returned to Dallas to pursue his M.D. at the University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center. Kyle’s interests include prehospital medicine, particularly tactical medicine, and he hopes to pursue these interests during residency at Johns Hopkins.
Kaveesh Kutty, M.D.
Medical School: Drexel University College of Medicine
Undergrad: Drexel University
Activities/Hobbies: cooking, running, soccer (playing and watching), scuba diving, drumming and listening to new music
Home State: New Jersey
Why Johns Hopkins: The opportunity to develop as an adept clinician amongst a challenging and diverse patient population, while simultaneously discovering and building a career in administration and physician leadership.
Kaveesh Kutty was born in India, but spent most of his childhood growing up in central New Jersey. He attended college and medical school at Drexel University, making the city of Philadelphia his de facto home base. At Johns Hopkins, he plans to research in and learn more about administration, operations and physician leadership. Outside of work, Kaveesh likes to spend time at restaurants and bars with friends, travel at every opportunity and play soccer.
Hai Le, M.D.
Medical School: Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine
Undergrad: University of Maryland, College Park
Activities/Hobbies: books, movies, food, swimming and bowling
Home State: Maryland
Why Johns Hopkins: amazing people, incredible opportunities, diverse patient population, strong tradition of medical education and the city of Baltimore
Hai Le was born and raised in Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam, until he was 10 years old, when he immigrated with his family to the United States. After spending a few months in Dallas, they moved to the suburbs of Columbia, Maryland. He went on to study neurobiology at the University of Maryland, College Park (UMD). Hai stayed at UMD after graduation to work as a research assistant in a genetics lab before enrolling at the Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine. Outside of the hospital, he enjoys reading a good book, learning how to cook Vietnamese food, trying to get better at swimming and improving his scores in bowling.
Caleb Leibee, D.O.
Medical School: LECOM (Lake Erie College of Osteopathic Medicine)
Undergrad: Geneva College/Penn State
Activities/Hobbies: saltwater fishing, boating, backpacking and exploring national parks, horse training/riding, volleyball
Home State: Pennsylvania
Why Johns Hopkins: Ever since I wanted to be a doctor, I aspired to be a Johns Hopkins doctor! Coming here to rotate as an away student, I was blown away by the education culture. I rotated through nine incredible university hospital systems in my med school clinicals, and nowhere else came close to showing the passion and focus on teaching that I experienced in the culture here from every level of personnel in the emergency department. Secondly, the opportunities to get involved in every type of interest and specialty associated with emergency medicine are endless and at the highest, most elite level here. Whether it is politics or disaster relief, the connections here go straight to the top.
Caleb Leibee was raised with 11 siblings in a Mennonite/Amish community in Lancaster, Pennsylvania, just one and a half hours away. Early exposure to medical systems through frequent hospital visits with his sister with Down syndrome and older siblings’ missions in Africa ignited the quest to break out of the “one-room schoolhouse” community, gather as much education as possible and become a physician and social entrepreneur. While attending Penn State, Caleb and his brother founded Crossover, an inner-city boys’ sports mentorship club dealing with social issues for young men in Reading, Pennsylvania, that continues to flourish. He finished his undergraduate degree at Geneva College near Pittsburgh while spending summers helping in his family’s developmental and mission projects in Africa. Meanwhile, his medical ambitions continued to run parallel with his social projects as he volunteered as an EMT on ambulances at night and worked as an emergency department tech. He chose Lake Erie College of Osteopathic Medicine in Bradenton, Florida, for medical school, thrilling in the opportunity to be in proximity to his favorite hobbies of boating and fishing. He believes Johns Hopkins is the perfect union of his passions and projects both socially and medically.
Andrew Lin, M.D.
Medical School: University of Texas Southwestern
Undergrad: University of Texas at Dallas
Activities/Hobbies: weightlifting, whiskey, hiking, theatre, video games, eating too much spicy food
Home State: Texas
Why Johns Hopkins: The people! I felt welcomed during my interview day, and thought the residents and faculty would make great team members. Add that to an inspirational vision to serve the city of Baltimore, great mentorship and an atmosphere of camaraderie and respect — it’s a winning combination.
Andrew Lin was born in Manhattan, but a prompt family relocation took him south to Dallas, where he would stay for the next 17 years. For the majority of his adult life, Andrew bounced between career paths, working many different jobs — landscaping, bartending, teaching and working in an office, until he settled on a career as a firefighter. By accident, he found his calling in prehospital medicine, which drove him to pursue an M.D. at University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center to become an emergency medicine physician. He hopes to continue this passion at Johns Hopkins, where he can continue to work with the fire service.
Nicholas Markadakis, M.D.
Medical School: University of Washington School of Medicine
Undergrad: University of Alaska
Activities/Hobbies: concerts, amateur drumming, travel, mindfulness, craft beer in the sunshine, comedy, wilderness, current events, social justice
Home State: Alaska
Why Johns Hopkins: After a thought-provoking discussion about the nature of poverty, and not to mention a few goofy antics, I was left speechless at the end of my interview day. Between the kind staff, underprivileged patient population, flexible curriculum, global health connections and reputation for radically patient-centered care, I felt as if I’d gotten my letter to Hogwarts (for the Harry Potter fans). Johns Hopkins will not only help me become an excellent clinician, but also provide me with abundant opportunities to develop my advocacy toolbox and make ripples on a larger scale.
Nick Markadakis is one of eight children, the son of a nurse and a cook. He spent his childhood tromping through the woods of Southcentral Alaska. There he earned a bachelor’s degree in biological sciences while working as a pharmacy technician and chief medical scribe. He relocated to Seattle to study medicine with an emphasis in global health, completing electives in Cambodia and Malawi, a career path he intends to pursue at Johns Hopkins. When not looking for a “preferential option for the poor” in health care, he’s probably listening to funky fresh beats and exploring all that Baltimore has to offer!
Bradley Schifrien, M.D.
Medical School: Chicago Medical School at Rosalind Franklin University
Undergrad: Northwestern University
Activities/Hobbies: cooking, working out, dog walking, coffee brewing and exploring new restaurants
Home State: Maryland
Why Johns Hopkins: On my interview day I was so impressed at how Johns Hopkins checked all the boxes — the ability to work with an incredibly diverse and sick patient population, infinite resources available for research and learning, and the unique FAST program that provides dedicated time to further my interests within emergency medicine.
Bradley Schifrien was born and raised in Rockville, Maryland, just outside of Washington, D.C. He attended college at Northwestern University, where he majored in neurobiology and psychology. After graduation, he worked in clinical research at Northwestern before attending medical school at Chicago Medical School. During this time, he served as the head of clinical affairs for his school’s student-run free clinic, where he developed his interest in health care administration and operations. He is excited to be back in his home state and to continue his education at Johns Hopkins!
Aaron Stern, M.D.
Medical School: Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai
Undergrad: Wesleyan University
Activities/Hobbies: soccer, football, movies, board games, trivia
Home State: Massachusetts
Why Johns Hopkins: I chose Johns Hopkins for the opportunity to learn from the best clinicians in the world and to help a traditionally underserved community. I thought the tools and opportunities at Johns Hopkins were unparalleled, and they were partnered with a unique curriculum focused on resident growth.
Aaron Stern grew up in the suburbs of Boston. He graduated from Wesleyan University with a degree in psychology and pursued his premedical education at Georgetown University. After a year of working as a medical assistant in Sonoma, California, followed by a year working as a tutor in Boston, he landed in New York City to attend medical school. While there, he was able to further develop his interest in classroom teaching as well as medical education as a whole. He hopes to take advantage of the wealth of teaching opportunities Johns Hopkins has to offer in order to grow as a teacher, mentor and clinician.
Balakrishna Vemula, M.D.
Medical School: New York Medical College
Undergrad: Boston University
Activities/Hobbies: computer games (real-time strategy games), Star Wars, Marvel Cinematic Universe, basketball, indoor rock climbing
Home State: Massachusetts
Why Johns Hopkins: I chose Johns Hopkins because of the emphasis the residency department placed on teamwork. I know this included being paired up with a registered nurse when you start, and to my surprise, one of my interviews was with an R.N. To me this showed their commitment to team camaraderie was beyond mere words.
Balakrishna Vemula was born in southern India, moved to Belgium, and then to the United States, where he was raised in Massachusetts. He attended undergrad at Boston University where he majored in biochemistry and molecular biology and minored in psychology. After graduating, he moved to Fort Worth, Texas, where he worked for two years as an emergency department scribe. Then he attended New York Medical College. He enjoys playing computer games and watching superhero movies.
Emergency Medicine/Anesthesiology Residents:
David Anthony Leon, M.D.
Medical School: University of Vermont
Undergrad: University of Virginia
Activities/Hobbies: hiking/biking/climbing/skiing/stand-up paddleboarding, weightlifting, soccer, cooking, traveling, going to concerts
Home State: Virginia (though I like to say Washington, D.C.)
Why Johns Hopkins: The patients and pathology that come to Johns Hopkins, combined with the incredible resources of the medical campus. Baltimore offers a diverse patient population that presents with a wide spectrum of pathology, and Johns Hopkins itself attracts truly unique cases that are seen in very few other medical institutions. Such a rich learning environment is supported by the brilliant minds of Johns Hopkins faculty and housestaff, with a litany of research and career opportunities. On top of all this, I am very fortunate to be part of the pioneer first class of the new emergency medicine-anesthesiology residency, a combination only possible at Johns Hopkins.
David Leon was born and raised in the Washington, D.C., area. He attended University of Virginia, where he majored in biology and did research in circadian rhythms. While there, he was also involved with music and rugby. After graduation, he returned to the D.C. area to complete an M.S. in physiology at Georgetown University. He then worked both as an emergency department scribe as well as a clinical assistant at a private dermatology clinic prior to attending University of Vermont Larner College of Medicine. He hopes to continue to pursue his interests, both academic and extracurricular, while completing his residency at Johns Hopkins.
Katie O’Conor, M.D.
Medical School: Johns Hopkins
Undergrad: University of Pennsylvania
Activities/Hobbies: the Baltimore Orioles, Ravens, family and friends, traveling, food, music, anything outdoors
Home State: Maryland
Why Johns Hopkins: For me, Johns Hopkins was ideal in combining the rigor of a world-class academic institutional training program with a public service mission to care for high acuity patients with complex medical and psychosocial needs. I am excited to learn from exceptional mentors and friends while continuing my work across the institution and city and living close to loved ones in my inclusive, diverse, multicolor, multicultural hometown.
Katie O’Conor grew up in Baltimore and studied psychology, cognitive science and linguistics at University of Pennsylvania. She began her career in film and media, executive strategy and community service, before transitioning to a health care focus. Katie has worked as a researcher, adviser and educator in emergency medicine, disaster preparedness, crisis response and health care disparities. Her advocacy areas of focus are human trafficking, sexual assault, substance use, veteran and responder health/PTSD, and immigrant/refugee health. She looks forward to starting the new emergency medicine-anesthesiology program and continuing her career in acute care for vulnerable patients.