Our program is lead by an incredible team of leaders and supported by numerous Med-Peds trained Faculty in the inpatient and ambulatory setting. These people are invaluable resources to our residents and the program graduates. They have created quite a legacy that we hope to continue to build!
Michael Contarino, MD
Residency Program Director
Dr. Mike Contarino graduated from Duke University in 1999 with a degree in Biomedical and Electrical Engineering. From there, he spent four years as an officer in the United States Navy with the Civil Engineers Corps traveling and gaining leadership experience. After his navy career, Dr. Contarino returned to North Carolina to attend the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill School of Medicine and also completed residency training in Internal Medicine and Pediatrics at UNC. Following this, he joined the faculty at WakeMed as an internal medicine and pediatric hospitalist, focusing on resident and medical student education. Among other duties and volunteer activities, Dr. Contarino serves on the Hospital Ethics Committee, and chairs the Care Delivery Team for patient and family centered care. He has won several teaching awards throughout residency and his time as a hospitalist, including the Robert L Ney Award, Harvey J Hamrick Excellence in Teaching Award, and the WakeMed Faculty Teaching Award.
Ria Dancel, MD
Residency Associate Program Director
Dr. Dancel graduated from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill and the Internal Medicine-Pediatrics Residency program. Her area of clinical interest and quality improvement research focuses on point of care ultrasound (POCUS) as a diagnostic tool and an instrument to increase patient safety during invasive bedside procedures. She is involved in resident education and also teaches POCUS on a regional and national level. Her major quality improvement focus is simulation training for diagnostic and procedural POCUS. Other quality improvement work has been in developing individualized and advanced care plans for patients with end-stage liver disease, improving transitions for hospitalized children, and developing a protocol to evaluate adults seeking treatment for alcohol dependence.
Jenn McCauley, MD
Residency Continuity Clinic Director
Dr. McCauley graduated from the University of Southern California Medical School (now known at Keck School of Medicine) and completed her residency at the Harvard Combined Internal Medicine and Pediatrics residency. She initially chose to become a physician in order to best combine her desire to help people with her interests in the health sciences. She continues to work in primary care because she thoroughly enjoys the privilege of being able to help others navigate the health care environment, allowing them to achieve the best health possible. Her general approach to patient care is to work as a team with her patients towards their health goals and to be present to support them in any time of need. Outside of work, she enjoys spending time with her family, hiking, exercising and staying as active as she can.
Erin Dunneback, MD
Current Chief Resident
Erin was born in Grand Rapids, MI, and completed her undergraduate studies in Kinesiology at Michigan State University, achieving High Honors. She is an AOA member, has strong interests in quality improvement, working on research projects to eliminate unnecessary tests. Despite living most of her life in Michigan, she and her husband have expressed their excitement to move South to a warmer climate .Erin’s hobbies and interests include:traveling, camping, boating, college football and basketball, and trying new restaurants.
Emma Bick, MD
Rising Chief Resident
Emma was born and raised in Chapel Hill, NC. She graduated with an undergraduate degree in Mathematics and a minor in Public Health from Williams College. In July 2018, Emma enrolled in the UNC Gillings School of Global Public Health and earned a Master of Public Health degree. Emma has a strong interest in the underserved care, curriculum development, and has done outstanding work with communication skills with an emphasis on end of life care. This SHAC CEO and wedding cake baker is also a graduate of the secret society known as Camp Seafarer. Emma’ hobbies/Interests reading, hiking, spinning, spending time training her Welsh Corgi, Alis.
Residency Program Coordinator
Robin Howard was born and raised in Sanford, NC and is now completing her undergraduate degree part-time at the University at North Carolina at Chapel Hill. She has worked at UNC-Chapel Hill for 16 years and loves working with the Internal Medicine and Pediatric Residency Programs. Her greatest joy is being able to see each resident push through life’s challenges while pursuing their career to serve to be able to serve others. Her nieces and nephews are her hearts and are the very reasons she presses forward everyday. When Robin is not enjoying serving in ministry, she loves taking in a movie, writing in her journal or relaxing at the beach or in the mountains.
For more information about the UNC Medicine-Pediatrics Residency Program, please contact:
Robin Howard, Program Coordinator
Erin Dunneback, MD, Chief Resident