Learn about the residents who have completed the Family Medicine Residency program at IU Health Ball Memorial Hospital – why they chose this program and what they gained from it.
Brogan Bahler, MD
Hello! My name is Brogan Bahler from West Lafayette, Indiana. I received my bachelor’s degree in Movement and Sports Science from Purdue University. From a young age I have always had a passion for sports; while at Purdue I was an avid member of the cycling club team and competed in intramural sports.
I attended medical school at the University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences, in Little Rock. Entering medical school I was not completely sure what I wanted to do. However, I found I enjoyed nearly every specialty, making family medicine a great choice!
I chose IU Health Ball Memorial because of its breadth of training and great faculty and residents. During my interview I found the faculty very encouraging and committed to helping each resident pursue their specific interest. There was one thing that impressed me the most about IU Health Ball Memorial. It was their focus to ensure each resident received the training necessary to reach their career goals, instead of a “one size fits all” style of curriculum.
In my spare time, I enjoy spending time with my wife and family, riding my bike, hiking, grilling out and practically anything outside.
Fariba Karimi, DO
I grew up in the great city of Louisville, Kentucky and am so thrilled to be doing my residency close to home! I attended Xavier University in Cincinnati, Ohio, where I majored in biology and French and minored in chemistry and Peace Studies. Medicine was just one of my passions! While in college, I took a strong interest in French language, culture and literature which led me to have a life-changing experience studying abroad at the Sorbonne in Paris!
In Paris, I became involved with a great organization called Le Kinkeliba. The organization focuses on not only providing adequate medical care to the people of Senegal but also on developing the community and strengthening education of the locals. The goal is for the locals to be more self-sufficient. I was also heavily involved with the Interfaith Community and Engagement Club at XU, through which I was able to go on an interfaith medical mission trip to Jamaica. Another amazing experience!
In between college and medical school, I got my master’s in anatomy and neurobiology at the University of Kentucky - go Cats! I was ready for a change of scenery for medical school and decided, what better place to study medicine than by the beach? So I headed to Fort Lauderdale, Florida where I attended Nova Southeastern University College of Osteopathic Medicine. I gained a passion for women’s health, integrative medicine and rural/underserved work. I even picked up a good amount of Spanish while living down amongst the incredibly diverse population of south Florida. I had a great experience going to school down in Florida but I was missing the kind, down-to-earth people of the Midwest!
I am thrilled to be starting residency at IU Health Ball Memorial Hospital―I don’t think I could have found a more fitting program for myself. I look forward to blending all of my special interests throughout residency in order to be the well-rounded family physician I always wanted to be. I am not sure what the future has in store for me after residency, but I hope it involves working with underserved communities, some global traveling and definitely some role in academics.
In my spare time, I enjoy hanging out with friends and family, watching movies/shows, traveling, eating food (and occasionally cooking too), working out and being outdoors!
Betsy Krause, MD
Hi, my name is Betsy Krause and I am from Avon, Indiana. Growing up I listened to my great-grandmother tell stories about my great-grandfather, who was a physician during the Great Depression and World War II. She recounted how her husband attended to the sick in their homes, ventured off a night to deliver babies during thunderstorms, and traded medical services for chicken and eggs. I was captivated by these stories and decided at a very young age this was the job for me.
In high school I took several trips to underserved countries and saw the overwhelming need for good primary care. This is where my personal passion for Family Medicine began. In the future, I want to provide care for those in underserved regions in the United States and abroad.
I attended Indiana University for both undergraduate and medical school. I was fortunate enough to have a Family Medicine rotation at IU Health Ball Memorial Hospital my third year of medical school. I was impressed by the kindhearted and dedicated staff. Each member is devoted to their patients and to training highly skilled and compassionate physicians in a caring environment.
In medicine I have particular interests in global health, behavioral health and addiction medicine. Outside of medicine, I enjoy spending time with my family, animals and nature.
Johnny Mihelcic, MD
Hello! My name is Johnny Mihelcic and although I am from Staunton, Ill., I am excited to be training in Muncie! During my undergraduate studies in molecular biology at the University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign, I realized medicine was the career for me. Returning home to rural Illinois to practice became my goal. After a year working as a pharmacy technician, I was fortunate enough to enroll in the Rural Medicine Education Program at University of Illinois Chicago – Rockford Campus. Here my passion for rural medicine was reinforced.
I look at my patients as a whole person, including their emotional and psychosocial well-being, not just their physical health. The full-spectrum medical experience IU Health Ball Memorial provides its residents first drew me to the program, since I plan to practice inpatient/outpatient, obstetrical care, and women’s health. The supportive faculty, residents and community physicians at IU Health Ball Memorial solidified my decision to train here. I am excited to become part of the Muncie community!
Other than working and studying, I enjoy long-distance running, reading, playing Euchre, cooking, learning Spanish, and hanging out with family and friends.
Anne Shenk, MD
I’m Anne, and I grew up just an hour northeast of Muncie, in the small town of Berne (famous for its Clock Tower, Swiss Days, and furniture). I didn’t always know I wanted to be a doctor, but I knew I wanted a job that involved life-long learning, teaching, people and science. While majoring in biology at Goshen College in northern Indiana, friends urged me to apply for medical school. After shadowing a small-town family doctor, I realized primary care medicine was the sort of career I had been hoping for.
After college, I attended Indiana University School of Medicine, and actually spent my first two years at the Muncie campus, on the second floor right above the Family Medicine clinic. I completed my third- and fourth-year rotations in Indianapolis. When the time came to officially choose a specialty and residency, the long-term relationships, variety and problem solving in Family Medicine still seemed like a perfect fit for me.
While looking at residencies, the opportunities at IU Health Ball Memorial for so many varied experiences was a huge strength. I felt I could become a well-rounded family doctor here, ready for any sort of practice in the future. And, just as importantly, the atmosphere at IU Health Ball Memorial felt like home.
I’m excited to be part of the IU Health Ball Memorial team, and my husband and I are excited to be re-acquainted with the Muncie community. Together we enjoy sporting events, being outdoors, and being with family. In Muncie we are looking forward to running and biking on the Cardinal Greenway and making some trips to Berry Winkle for frozen yogurt.
Ray Simon, II, MD
My name is Ray Simon. Born and raised in Northeast Ohio for most of my life, I come from a very large Lebanese family who all moved to the area about three generations ago. My family has always been a major part of my life. I moved away to Columbus and attended The Ohio State University to study biochemistry and psychology.
I moved back closer to home for medical school at Northeast Ohio Medical University, carrying with me what I valued from my undergraduate education and experience in healthcare thus far. I developed a passion for behavioral health during my studies in medical school, but have always had a deep appreciation for general medicine and understanding the family dynamic. I believe family medicine provides an excellent avenue for discussions and management of a wide spectrum of mental health as well as much-needed medical care.
I hope to make behavioral health a significant part of my practice, and through my training at IU Health Ball Memorial, I will be able to further my understanding of medicine in general. The staff and faculty have been more than welcoming and friendly and are all about helping me achieve my goals in training. My experience with Muncie so far has been limited, but in learning more and visiting city, I am very excited and intend to learn as much as I can about the city. Outside of medicine, I spend my time trying new recipes, spending time with close friends or reading up on latest consumer technology.
Roddrea Smith, MD
Hello Everyone! My name is Roddrea Smith. I am an Indianapolis, Indiana native. I knew at a very young age I wanted to be a physician! And that dream has finally come true after years of hard work and dedication. I attended DePauw University in Greencastle, Indiana, where I majored in psychology. I then went on to medical school at Indiana University in Indianapolis.
I am incredibly grateful to be here at the IU Health Ball Memorial Hospital Family Medicine Residency Program. I am certain this program will train me to be exactly the kind of doctor I always knew I could become. Upon completion of residency, I hope to open a private practice complex that functions to serve the entire family from, pediatrics and obstetrics to geriatrics and minor procedures! I look forward meeting my co-residents, patients and instructors!
In my spare time I enjoy canvas painting, cooking for friends and family, and traveling! I hope to marry my love for travel with my love for service. I would like to incorporate medical missions in my future career endeavors.
Isaiah Steffen, MD
At a young age, I had already made my decision to pursue medicine as a career. I grew up in Bolivia and Guatemala, the son of missionaries from Indiana, which allowed me many opportunities to help those in need. These experiences growing up instilled in me a passion for helping people, especially those who are going through difficult situations.
During my travels, I also came to know physicians as those who are in the unique position to help people with many different things. It might be with illnesses or in other areas of life. Physicians provide an overall better quality of living to others. As a result, I decided to pursue medicine, in order to help others from all walks of life, to help cure and prevent illness, and to allow people to achieve a high quality of life.
My parents and I moved to Indiana when I started high school, and there I had the privilege of working as a nursing assistant in a local nursing, caring for elderly patients and their families. After high school, I attended Indiana University in Bloomington, and studied chemistry and math.
During college, I was able to volunteer with many organizations, including Habitat for Humanity and the local hospital. My favorite experience was the summer I spent in California working with a church in a neighborhood with one of the highest poverty rates in the country.
During this summer, I realized I have a passion to serve and meet the needs of those in poverty. With this goal in mind, I attended Indiana University School of Medicine as a National Health Core Scholar. This included a commitment to work as a primary care provider in a medically underserved area upon completion of my residency.
I am excited to be continuing my medical career here in Muncie at IU Health Ball Memorial Hospital. The Family Medicine residency offers me many opportunities that will help prepare me for my future practice. In particular, I look forward to expanding my learning through their partnership with the Open Door clinic here in downtown Muncie. This will be a good model for what I want to do in my own future medical practice and through the opportunity to travel outside of the United States to care for diverse patient populations.
Outside of medicine, I enjoy doing DIY projects and travelling with my wife, Jessie and playing with my dog, Pippin. I also enjoy exploring different types of technology, computer programming and repair and playing golf, basketball, racquetball and softball.
Eric Westergren, DO
Hi, my name is Eric Westergren, and I'm excited to be joining the IU Health Ball Memorial Family Medicine Residency Program! Though I was born in Illinois, I spent the majority of my life in Southeast Asia. It was a wonderful upbringing that set the stage for my future pursuit of medicine.
Upon returning to the U.S., I attended Bethel University in St. Paul, Minnesota and received my undergraduate degree in English literature. Afterward, I attended medical school at Des Moines University in Des Moines, Iowa. It was also during this time I married my beautiful wife, Sarah, and we added our daughter, Lyla, to our family.
Both Sarah and I sensed an immediate connection to the people and program when we visited IU Health Ball Memorial during interview season. I was very impressed by the faculty, facilities and educational opportunities, and the family-friendly atmosphere of the program was very attractive. I am convinced I will graduate from residency with all the tools necessary to be the best family physician I can be!
Though one of the main reasons I chose Family Medicine as a specialty was the breadth of training, my particular medical interests include sports medicine, preventive medicine and outpatient procedures.
Outside of medicine, I enjoy spending as much time as possible with my family, cooking, having friends over, staying active, spending time outside and following Chicago sports.
Robyn Wilson, MD
I am originally from a small city in Alabama, where I lived my whole life before starting undergrad. I attended Auburn University (War Eagle!) and received a bachelor’s in biomedical sciences. After undergrad, I was accepted into the Rural Medicine Program for students interested in practicing rural family medicine. It is affiliated with the University of Alabama School of Medicine. I spent the first two years in Birmingham, Alabama and my third and fourth years of medical school in Huntsville.
I am looking forward to pursuing my interests in women’s health and rural medicine at IU Health Ball Memorial while working alongside a great group of physicians. I quickly realized it would be the perfect place to train in full spectrum family medicine.
I married my wonderful husband during undergrad and we have two beautiful daughters. Having a balance between work and family life is very important to me. When I am not working hard at the hospital or clinic, I enjoy spending time doing things outside with my family. We like to go hiking, go swimming and play board games. My husband and I are both excited about living in Muncie and getting to experience a little snow!