Welcome from the Program Director

This is a great time to become a neurologist. The coronavirus pandemic does not change that. As more patients present with more neurologic diseases, those diseases require more work, more urgency, and more clinicians.

Our fully accredited residency program is poised to help you join this growing field. The Department of Neurology is part of University of Missouri Health Care and the School of Medicine. For the past two decades, our faculty has doubled four times and our clinical subspecialty experts now cover virtually all neurology topics, both of which supports our goal to prepare residents for a career in either private practice or academic neurology. See where our recent graduates have ended up.

Clinical and research activity

We are a Level IV Epilepsy Center (highest available designation) as well as a Comprehensive Stroke Center, featuring multiple neurology stroke attendings (including two neurologists who do endovascular procedures) and a 17-bed neurosciences intensive care unit run by three fellowship-trained intensivist neurology attendings. Click here to let me take you on a tour of our facilities.

Residents may work one-on-one with specialists in fields such as stroke, epilepsy, movement disorders, neuromuscular, neuro-intensive care, multiple sclerosis, cognitive-behavioral neurology, sleep neurology, neuro-oncology, pediatric neurology, and headache.

Alongside this extensive clinical activity, our research work is robust with several federally funded research grants and sponsor-funded clinical trials or registries. Our program has produced a great number of peer-reviewed publications, meeting abstracts, and various other publications.


We have used our robust departmental activity to grow our neurology residency, adding new didactics, better workflow patterns, and new assessment and feedback systems. We balance residency training so that graduating residents can learn almost any area of clinical neurology.

And we regularly revisit our curriculum of rotations, didactic sessions, conferences, and research opportunities, and we look for opportunities to address resident requests and needs. Learn more about our curriculum innovations.

We match six residents each year. We have resident dedicated workstations and dedicated works storage area in the residents’ office. Residents have online access to UpToDate, our electronic medical record system, a clinical imaging system, and the University of Missouri’s extensive library system. We provide our residents with a professional development fund, membership in the American Academy of Neurology, and a subscription to the Continuum journal series.

A focus on learning and growth

Finally, I want to share that I love being a residency program director. My first best destiny is as a teacher. My teaching principles are: (1) learners learn more than teachers teach; (2) help make things clear, focused, and understandable; (3) motivate the learner, and make it fun; and (4) advocate for learning, and for the learner.

The entire department is committed to residents as well, including the development of a multifaceted wellness program and an inclusive culture, welcoming people of all backgrounds and experiences. diversity and inclusion committee with resident representation. With these programs and approach, my goal is to teach and inspire interest in neurology.

Joel Shenker, MD, PhD
Program Director

Residency training at MU