Gastroenterologists are excelling in pediatric medical academia

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Brian McFerron, MD and gastroenterologists at Riley Children's Health are advancing pediatric medical education beyond the standard scope.

Recognized for their stellar contributions to pediatric healthcare education is the team of gastroenterologists at Riley Children’s Health. With efforts to lead the generation’s next up-and-coming providers, our team of experts are earning educator awards and enhancing academia beyond the national scope.

Brian McFerron, MD, gastroenterologist at Riley Children’s and director of the Fellowship Training Program for the Division of Pediatric Gastroenterology, Hepatology and Nutrition at Indiana University School of Medicine, is a standout on the education team who is the recent Teri Li Young Educator Award recipient. The award, which honors individuals in the first phase of their professional career who have advanced the pediatric gastroenterology field through education scholarship, is granted each year through the North American Society for Pediatric Gastroenterology, Hepatology and Nutrition (NASPGHAN).

“He is passionate in every setting–when giving praise, when helping someone to discover areas of improvement, or even in a routine meeting,” Bobbi Byrne, MD said, vice chair of pediatric education and professor of clinical pediatrics at IU School of Medicine. “This award recognizes that Dr. McFerron is an outstanding educator on a national level.”

In addition, Jean P. Molleston, MD, division chief of pediatric gastroenterology at Riley Children’s, is another rewarded recipient, who recently earned the NASPGHAN Master Educator Award, a prestigious honor recognizing individuals for their educational work on a national or international basis. Known for multiple contributions to advancing pediatric academics, one vital practice she has evolved is the development of a new gastroenterology and nutrition medical student course, where she shifted from the traditional lecture-based learning to problem-based and case-based learning in 2019. As well, she established the transplant hepatology fellowship at Riley Children’s, where she previously served as the primary mentor to aspiring gastroenterologists.

Jean P. Molleston, MD, speaking with staff

“Dr. Molleston has always placed an emphasis on education throughout her career,” Charles Vanderpool, MD said, pediatric gastroenterologist at Riley Children’s. “Even while a resident at Washington University School of Medicine, she was voted as the best teacher by faculty and members of the residency house staff.”

Alongside Dr. McFerron and Dr. Molleston, gastroenterologists at Riley Children’s and their multidisciplined team of specialists are honored for additional recognitions, including:

  • Elaine A. Gilbert, PsyD, HSPP, pediatric psychologist at Riley Children’s, earns a teaching award for her work with the psychology internship and training program. Educating about GI psychology, she is one of to two pediatric psychologists at Riley Children’s who specializes in the rare area of expertise.
  • The study, “Biomarkers of Fibrosis and Portal Hypertension of Fontan-Associated Liver Disease in Children and Adults,” stewarded by Chaowapong Jarasvaraparn, MD, gastroenterologist at Riley Children’s, is named best abstract at the 2023 International Fontain Kreutzer Symposium.

Overall, our GI specialists are distinguished leaders, providing highly skilled care for patients with conditions related to obesity, liver disease and more. Learn more in the annual report.