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Kenan Miles Penaskovic, MD
Associate Professor
Psychiatry and Psychology


Phone:  (919) 966-4166

B.S., Biomedical Sciences, Auburn University
M.D., University of Alabama-Birmingham School of Medicine
Residency, University of North Carolina Hospitals

Summary Statement:

Dr. Penaskovic’s primary clinical activity is directing the psychotic disorders inpatient unit where he supervises residents and medical students in the evaluation and management of individuals suffering from serious mental illnesses like bipolar disorder and schizophrenia.  His academic interest is focused in the implementation of team-based learning in medical student and resident education.  Administratively he currently serves as associate director of the psychiatry clerkship and enjoys developing innovative projects focused on the advancement of the medical education curriculum.  Currently, he is working on educational research focused on developing team-based learning modules and the impact of team-based learning on psychiatry clerkships.

Kenan’s background in his own words:

I was born in Albany, N.Y. and my father moved my family to Auburn, A.L. when I was in grade school.  As the middle of three children, I have always enjoyed competition. My father is a university professor who teaches religious studies at Auburn University.  My mother is a retired nurse and hospital administrator.   I took a bit of both my parents’ interests and became an academic physician.  My passion for working with medical students ignited while I was serving in Mobile, AL in the National Health Service Core to help repay my medical student loans.

I met my wife while we were attending Auburn University and got married during medical school at the University of Alabama-Birmingham.  We started our family during my residency here at UNC and now have four children.   Outside of work I spend most of my time enjoying my wife and kids.  Currently our favorite activities include legos, baby dolls, Star Wars, and outdoor recreation.  I love sports especially college football and basketball.  I enjoy living in Chapel Hill in part because of how similar it is to my college hometown of Auburn.

Looking back, medical education has definitely been a marathon race with no finish line.  In medicine there are only students, some of whom happen to teach.  I went into medical school thinking I would be an internist, but what drew me to psychiatry was hearing patients tell their stories and working on a team. My goal as an advisor is to help students pace themselves and enjoy the scenery along the way.