An esteemed figure in the field of child psychiatry, Estherina Shems, MD, is currently retired, having formerly served as a consultant of Early Intervention Programs with Community Council Health Systems in Philadelphia, Pa., from 1981 to 2002. Prior to this position, she was a clinical associate of psychiatry at the Perelman School of Medicine affiliated with the University of Pennsylvania from 1979 to 1981. Dr. Shems commenced her career as a child psychiatry affiliate with the Youth Study Center of Philadelphia from 1961 to 1963.
Alongside her vocational endeavors, Dr. Shems served as an invited lecturer at the Chinese Academy of Medical Sciences at Peking Union Medical College in Beijing, China. She has additionally held numerous consulting and teaching positions in the field of psychiatry.
In preparation for her successful career, Dr. Shems first obtained a Bachelor of Science, cum laude, from Lynchburg College in 1954. She followed this accomplishment with a Doctor of Medicine from the Woman’s Medical College of Pennsylvania in 1958. Subsequently, she was a rotating intern with Lankenau Medical Center from 1958 to 1959 and a fellow in adult psychiatry at the University of Pennsylvania from 1960 to 1963. She was awarded an honorary Doctor of Science from Lynchburg College in 2009.
In recognition of her exceptional achievements, Dr. Shems has been presented with several accolades during the course of her impressive career. In 2002, she was honored with the Bertha Van Hoosen Award by the American Medical Women’s Association, as well as the Lifetime Achievement Award by the Virginia Foundation for Independent Colleges. In addition, she was awarded the Richard H. Thornton Award for Excellence and Distinguished Alumni Award from Lynchburg College in 1995 and 1990, respectively. Dr. Shems was named an honoree of Young Women of America and Outstanding Young Women of Pennsylvania in 1967.
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