Program Director's Welcome

Welcome to the University of Arizona Medicine Internal Medicine Residency.  I am delighted that you are interested in our program.  We feel that we have a highly collegial, intermediate sized academic training program located in a beautiful part of the country.  The experiences at our diverse training sites in Tucson allow our residents exposure to the broadest possible range of patients and faculty.  Outside of the Tucson city limits, we have rotations on the Navajo and Apache reservations, as well as international experiences available in British Honduras and in Jordan. Beyond the rigorous clinical training, our program has a history of matching its graduates into competitive fellowships and careers.  The Arizona Cancer Center and the Sarver Heart Center allow our residents to compete for some of the most competitive fellowships.  UA faculty welcome our residents into their laboratories allowing them participation in both clinical and bench research.

We are very proud to announce Continued Accreditation from the ACGME effective 01/19/2018.
If you are looking for a friendly program with high academic standards, we welcome you to visit and meet our leadership, faculty and residents as part of our interview process.

Laura Meinke, MD

Program Directors:


Laura E. Meinke, MD
Program Director, University Medical Center
Dr. Laura Meinke graduated summa cum laude with her B.S. degree in Microbiology from the University of Arizona before heading off to northern California where she acquired her medical school degree, her Internal Medicine Residency and her Pulmonary & Critical Care Medicine Fellowship at Stanford University. It was during that time that she further developed her interest in academic medicine. Dr. Meinke completed the Stanford Faculty Development program in 2006 and has been an active participant in resident education since her return to the University of Arizona in 2007. She has developed several quality improvement projects, including central line complications and ultrasound-guided central venous catheterization. Dr. Meinke is board certified in Internal Medicine, Pulmonary Medicine and Critical Care Medicine.

Robert Aaronson, MD
Associate Program Director, Tucson Medical Center
Executive Director, THMEP
Clinical Professor of Medicine, University of Arizona
Dr. Aaronson is an Associate Program Director for the University of Arizona, Tucson Internal Medicine Residency Program. He oversees program activities at Tucson Medical Center and throughout the Tucson community. A Clinical Professor of Medicine at the University of Arizona College of Medicine, Dr. Aaronson received his B.A. summa cum laude in English Literature from Columbia University, followed by his M.D. from New York University School of Medicine. He completed his Internal Medicine Residency at University of California, San Francisco and his fellowship training in Pulmonary & Critical Care Medicine at Boston University. He is currently the Executive Director of the Tucson Hospitals Medical Education Program (THMEP) and section chief for Pulmonary & Critical Care Medicine at Tucson Medical Center. Dr. Aaronson is Board Certified in Internal Medicine, Pulmonary Medicine, Critical Care Medicine, Sleep Medicine and Neurocritical Care Medicine.

Joao Paulo Ferreira, MD
Associate Program Director, University Medical Center
Dr. Joao Paulo Ferreira received his MD from Faculdade de Medicina da Bahia in Brazil. He worked for two years in urban urgent care facilities, rural emergency rooms and for a family health program in Brazil. Dr. Ferreira completed his residency and Geriatrics fellowship at Medical College of Wisconsin in Milwaukee, Wisconsin. After fellowship, Dr. Ferreira worked for the Southern Arizona VA Health Care System as a hospitalist. In October of 2013, Dr. Ferreira joined us at the University of Arizona Medical Center — now Banner – University Medical Center — as a hospitalist and plays a vital in the Internal Medicine Residency Program as an Associate Program Director. Dr. Ferreira is also in the preliminary stage of starting a Hospitalist Fellowship here at the University of Arizona.

Joshua Malo, MD
Associate Program Director, University Medical Center
Dr. Malo graduated cum laude with a B.A. in Biophysics from The John Hopkins University before obtaining his M.D. from Albert Einstein College of Medicine of Yeshiva University, Bronx, New York. Dr. Malo completed his postgraduate Internal Medicine Residency and fellowship training in Pulmonary & Critical Care Medicine at the University of Arizona. He has been an active participant in resident education since his residency, serving as a Chief Resident for the Internal Medicine Program from 2009-2010 and as a Chief Fellow in 2012-2013. As an influential member of our faculty, Dr. Malo currently serves as an Associate Program Director for the Internal Medicine Residency program. Dr. Malo has developed curricula for airway management simulation and critical care ultrasonography for pulmonary and critical care. Dr. Malo is board certified in Internal Medicine, Pulmonary, and Critical Care Medicine. His clinical and research interests include resident and fellow education, coccidioidomycosis, extracorporeal membrane oxygenation, and lung transplant.

Tirdad T. Zangeneh, DO, MA, FACP, FIDSA
Associate Program Director, University Medical Center
Dr. Zangeneh graduated from the University of Washington with a B.S. in psychology. Furthering his education he completed a Masters in psychology at California State University in Los Angeles. After working in the field of HIV/AIDS at the City of Los Angeles, Dr. Zangeneh received his D.O. from Nova Southeastern University in Ft. Lauderdale, Florida. Postgraduate training in Internal Medicine Residency and a fellowship in infectious Disease was completed at the University of Miami, Jackson Memorial Hospital. Currently, at the University of Arizona College of Medicine, Dr. Zangeneh serves as Associate Professor of Clinical Medicine and Associate Program Director for the Internal Medicine Residency program. Dr. Zangeneh is board certified in both Internal Medicine and Infectious Disease.

Department Chair of Medicine:

IMAGE: Dr. Monica Kraft
Monica Kraft, MD
Robert and Irene Flinn Professor of Medicine
Chair, Department of Medicine
University of Arizona College of Medicine
Medical School: University of California, San Francisco
Internal Medicine Residency: Harbor-UCLA Medical Center
Pulmonary & Critical Care Medicine Fellowship: University of Colorado Health Sciences Center
Year joined Faculty: 2015

Special interests: Patient Care, Teaching, Adult Asthma
Research interests:Mechanisms of innate immune dysfunction, Inflammation and airway remodeling in asthma, Evaluation of new therapies through clinical trials


Chief Residents

Jawad Bilal, MBBS

Jawad Bilal was raised in Pakistan. He attended medical school at Nishtar Medical College, University of Health Sciences. Afterward, he moved to the United States and worked as a translational researcher in Cardiothoracic Surgery Department at the University of Arizona. He completed his Internal Medicine Residency training at University of Arizona and is applying for fellowship in Rheumatology.  His primary research interest is in spondyloarthropathies. Jawad serves as a clinical chief and the research chief for the 2017-18 academic year. In his free time he enjoys road trips, reading, and spending time with his family.

Aakash Shah, MD

Aakash Shah was born in Ahmedabad, India and moved to the US at a very young age. He has moved all across the country and was primarily raised in Orlando, Florida. He completed his B.S. in Microbiology & Cell Science with a Minor in Chemistry at the University of Florida. He then proceeded to the University of Missouri-Kansas City School of Medicine and graduated with his M.D. in 2014. Dr. Shah completed Internal Medicine Residency Training at the University of Arizona and continues on as a Chief Resident with a focus in Ambulatory Medicine for 2017-2018. He is interested in the specialty of Cardiology and his research interest focused on the effects of Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI scans) on Cardiac Implantable Electronic Devices. In his free time he enjoys traveling, playing basketball, watching sports, and spending time with his family. 

Kawanjit Surapur, MD

Kawanjit Surapur was born in Canada and raised in the metro Detroit area. She went to Wayne State University for her undergraduate, Bachelor of Science in Biology, and worked in a nanoparticle laboratory with chlamydia-infected inflammatory murine models. Afterward, she went on to medical school at Wayne State University and completed residency training at the University of Arizona's Internal Medicine's program. Currently, she is applying to Sleep Medicine with future focus into Pulmonary Disease Medicine. Dr. Surapur serves mainly as the scheduling chief and academic chief while rotating at all residency sites. She will be helping compile an academic curriculum for the upcoming year. In her free time, she likes to run, play with her daughter, play videogames, and try new restaurants. 

Yunuen Valenzuela, MD

Yunuen Valenzuela was born in Mexico City and lived in Mexico until the age of 12 when his family moved to Arizona. He later completed his BS in Biology with double minor in Spanish and Chemistry at Oral Roberts University in Tulsa, Oklahoma. He then attended medical school at the University of Pittsburgh. His path in medicine has been circuitous. He initially did two years of general surgery at the University of Cincinnati after which he moved back to Arizona and took time off from medicine. He then joined the general surgery program at the University of Arizona for one year and then moved to the Department of Education for a couple of years. He then joined a cardiology research lab as a volunteer followed by entering into the Internal Medicine program at the University of Arizona. He completed his training in Internal Medicine and will be working in Hospital Medicine after his chief year. He is primarily the Academic Conferences Chief for 2017-2018. His primary academic interests are QI projects regarding reduction of hospital re-admissions. He enjoys travelling, weight lifting, running, tennis, and spending time with friends and family.