Carola Eisenberg, M.D. received her MD degree in 1944 from the University of Buenos Aires, after which she completed a fellowship in Child Psychiatry at Johns Hopkins Hospital. She is currently a Lecturer in Social Medicine at Harvard Medical School and remains a practicing psychiatrist. Her first appointment was as an Assistant Professor of Child Psychiatry at the Johns Hopkins Medical School from 1958 – 1967. In 1968, she became a staff psychiatrist at the Student Health Service of the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. From 1972 to 1978, she served as Dean for Student Affairs at MIT, the first woman to occupy that position and the first to serve on the Academic Council, its highest academic governing authority. In 1978, she was appointed Dean for Student Affairs at Harvard Medical School where she served for 12 years. She was among the first leaders in medicine to offer assistance and support to women students and residents and to publish articles in major journals on the changes needed in medical education if women are to realize their potential.
More recently, at a time in life when many physicians retire, Dr. Eisenberg began participating in human rights missions to El Salvador, Chile and Paraguay. She has served as Vice President of Physicians for Human Rights, an organization dedicated to the championship of physicians subjected to persecution in other countries; this organization shared the 1997 Nobel Peace Prize for its work in the campaign against land mines. Moreover, she created a course at HMS on human rights and international medicine and served as Director of the International Program for Medical Students. She has also continued to give presentations and serve on many national task forces and committees in the area of women’ s health and women’ s careers in science, as well as on professionalism.
In summary, Dr. Eisenberg has, throughout her long career, worked tirelessly to make medicine and public health available to all those in need, all the while improving medical education and the practice of psychiatry. Dr. Eisenberg is a role model for women who work to make a difference in medicine, their community and the world today.