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Meet the MSA Team


Jay Behel, PhD

Jay Behel, PhD

Associate Dean, Medical Student Affairs
Associate Professor, Department of Psychiatry & Behavioral Sciences
Director, Section of Geriatric & Rehabilitation Psychology

As associate dean of Medical Student Affairs, Behel has strategic oversight of the three pillars in Medical Student Affairs: advising, academic support and professional development. He works directly with each student as they prepare to apply for residency, and he collaborates on institutional initiatives related to wellness and the learning environment.

Behel is a clinical health psychologist and a national leader in bringing restorative justice practices to academic medicine. In addition to his role in MSA, Behel is course director for the M1 elective Humanities in Medicine, a course director for programs in the Center for Innovative & Lifelong Learning and serves as the education lead for Affirm: The RUSH Center for Gender, Sexuality & Reproductive Health.


  • PhD, Clinical Psychology, Auburn University
  • BA, Psychology and English, Vanderbilt University


  • Residency: Health Psychology, RUSH University Medical Center
  • Fellowship: Rehabilitation Psychology, Rush University Medical Center

Laurel Cherian, MD

Laurel Cherian, MD, MS

Assistant Dean, Advising
Assistant Professor, Department of Neurological Sciences
Division Chief, Stroke and Cerebrovascular Disease

As the assistant dean for advising, Cherian oversees RUSH Medical College’s six advising communities, including the peer including the peer and faculty advising programs, and works closely with the Medical Student Affairs team to optimally support RUSH Medical students on their journey to becoming physicians.

Cherian is an accomplished researcher and explores the role of nutrition on post-stroke outcomes, including cognition, mental health and neuropathology. Supported by NIH funding, her research has been published in a variety of scientific journals and featured in media coverage including NPR, the Wall Street Journal, ABC News, Good Morning America and the Atlantic.


  • MD, Loyola University of Chicago Stritch School of Medicine
  • MS, Clinical Research, RUSH University
  • BS, Biology and English Literature, University of Michigan


  • Residency: Neurology, University of Chicago
  • Fellowship: Vascular Neurology, RUSH University Medical Center

Christine Corral, PhD

Christine Corral, PhD

Director of Student Professional Development

Corral oversees the career and professional development programming for all medical students and offers a signature series of programs tailored for each class year. She directs the Careers in Medicine elective and manages the careers in medicine specialty choice program including 19 student interest groups. In addition, Corral oversees the residency application process for graduating students including an interview preparation course. In her role, she collaborates closely with the RUSH University’s alumni relations team and developed the Specialty Champions and Residency Champions programs to support students through the residency application and interview process.

In addition, Corral serves on the advisory board for the University's Center for Academic Excellence and the RUSH Medical College Early Intervention Committee.


  • PhD, Higher Education Administration with a minor Counseling Psychology, Loyola University Chicago
  • MEd, College Student Personnel with a concentration in Higher Education Administration, Loyola University Chicago
  • BA, English with a minor in Mass Communications, Saint Xavier University

Dijana Demirovic

Dijana Demirovic, MEd

Student Support Services Manager

In her role, Demirovic develops, manages and oversees all academic support services for third- and fourth-year medical students. She provides both individual and group support to assist students in their clerkship and enhance their learning experience throughout their time at Rush and also oversees Resident Education Programs and is developing a graduate internship program for the MSA team.


  • MEd, Counseling, Loyola University Chicago

Allison Haas, MA

Manager, Student Support Services


Carolina Leanos, BS

Education Coordinator


Ivy Mosley

Education Coordinator


Contact Us

Medical Student Affairs
Office of Integrated Medical Education
RUSH Medical College
403 Armour Academic Center