Maria Perez, DO
Associate Director, Pediatric Residency Program
Dr. Maria E. Perez earned her undergraduate degree in biology and psychology from Drew University in Madison, New Jersey and then earned her DO degree at the University of Medicine and Dentistry of NJ-School of Osteopathic Medicine (now Rowan University School of Medicine). She completed her residency in pediatrics at Goryeb Children’s Hospital and her fellowship in pediatric gastroenterology at Nationwide Children’s Hospital in Columbus, Ohio. Afterward, she returned to NJ to join the Division of Pediatric Gastroenterology and Nutrition at Goryeb Children’s Hospital.
Believing in the importance of clinical research, Dr. Perez has been involved in several studies involving functional gastroenterology, GI issues in adolescents and the effects of nutritional rehabilitation on gastric motility, somatic complaints, and anxiety in pediatric patients with anorexia.Dr. Perez has written many scholarly articles on the subject of pediatric gastroenterology, including chronic abdominal pain and functional (non-ulcer) dyspepsia in children and adolescents. She also wrote and edited a self-management handbook for pediatric patients with inflammatory bowel disease, which was later converted to an interactive online program for the North American Society of Pediatric Gastroenterology, Hepatology and Nutrition (NASPGHAN). More recently, she published a review of the gastrointestinal manifestations of eating disorders for the American Academy of Pediatric’s (AAP) Adolescent Medicine: State of the Art Reviews.
In addition to her busy clinical practice, Dr. Perez places significant emphasis on community service and education. Each year, she organizes a Hospital Day for the 8th grade students in the NJ Scholars, Educators, Excellence, Dedication, Success (SEEDS) program. She also teaches a class about the role of diet in gastrointestinal conditions for graduate students studying nutrition at Columbia University in New York and has given multiple lectures to trainees, nurses and the community. In her role with NASPGHAN, she served on the Training Committee and helped develop a review book for the pediatric GI board exam. Dr. Perez previously served as chairwoman of the National Pediatric Gastroenterology Fellows Committee, where she is now a member of their Professional Education
Committee. At Goryeb Children’s Hospital, Dr. Perez helped develop and currently serves as chairwoman for the Goryeb Academic Pediatrics Support (GAPS) Committee – an effort dedicated to encourage and support academic culture and research curriculum for residents. With a personal interest in resident wellness, Dr. Perez has formalized our resident wellness curriculum this year with monthly training sessions in addition to off-site social activities.
Dr. Perez accepted the position of associate program director of the Pediatric Residency Program in 2015, and has since become an active member of the Association of Pediatric Program Directors (APPD), where she serves on their research and scholarly activity interest group.