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Mari was born in San Diego, raised in North Carolina, completed her undergraduate education as a Banana Slug at UC Santa Cruz and spent a few years teaching high school in Oakland, CA through Teach For America.  Her desire to work with underserved populations was solidified during her stent as a teacher, where she recognized the need, the passion, and the reward from setting high expectations and helping empower her students to meet their potential.  Leaving teaching was not easy, but she decided to pursue her childhood dream of becoming a doctor and was thankfully accepted into the “pioneering class” of the combined MD/MPH program at the University of Miami Miller School of Medicine.  She absolutely loved medical school and to much of her surprise, thrived, graduating as a member of the Alpha Omega Alpha honor society.  A combined training in Family Medicine and Psychiatry felt like the natural next step for her given her affinity for combined training, commitment to public health, passion for education, strong belief in the possibility for behavioral change, and desire to provide comprehensive, holistic care to her patients and their communities.  She feels like it is a dream come true to have ping ponged her way across the US coasts to join the UCSD Combined Family Medicine and Psychiatry family!