Yael Schenker, MD, MAS, Appointed Associate Director for Education and Training

Yael Schenker, MD, MAS, has been appointed to the position of Associate Director for Education and Training, focusing on clinical investigators at UPMC Hillman Cancer Center.

Dr. Schenker will work closely and in partnership with Associate Director Chris Bakkenist, who will continue to focus on preclinical investigators, including his innovation of a new graduate program focused on cancer biology and oncological sciences.

Dr. Schenker is a tenured professor of medicine in the University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine, palliative care physician, and health services researcher. Her highly funded research focuses on improving the quality of cancer and serious illness care, and she has led numerous clinical trials of palliative interventions. Dr. Schenker is funded by the National Cancer Institute, the National Institute on Aging, the National Palliative Care Research Center, and the American Cancer Society.

Dr. Schenker also serves as Director of the Palliative Research Center (PaRC), where she has been instrumental in bringing together researchers from across Pitt and supporting mentees at all stages of their career. Dr. Schenker is the PI of a K24 award, which supports her extensive mentorship activities, and she led a foundation grant to expand national capacity and diversity in palliative care.

Dr. Schenker is a standing member of the Biobehavioral Medicine and Health Outcomes Study Section at the NIH. She also served in a leadership role at Pitt’s Clinical and Translational Science Institute as co-director of team science. She joined the University of Pittsburgh in 2010, after completing her medical school, residency, and fellowship training at the University of California, San Francisco.

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