Educational Programs

The Department of Radiation Oncology at Rutgers Cancer Institute of New Jersey, Rutgers - Robert Wood Johnson Medical School and Robert Wood Johnson University Hospital is dedicated to the mission of education and dedicated to educate and train the next generation of radiation oncologists, medical physicists and medical dosimetrists.

There are four established educational programs in the department:

Radiation Oncology Medical Residency Program

Director: Sung Kim, M.D, Associate Professor
Associate Residency Program Director: Joseph Weiner, MD, Assistant Professor

The residency program is a four-year clinical training program aimed at training highly qualified radiation oncologists. Currently, there are nine resident positions in the program. Residents rotate through three-month blocks, with one-to-one training with our faculty at four facilities:  Robert Wood Johnson University Hospital, VA Hospital at East Orange NJ, University Hospital (Newark) and Saint Barnabas Medical Center (Livingston). Residents actively participate in the treatment planning involved with patient care, learning modern techniques such as IMRT, protons, SBRT, 3D conformal therapy, and brachytherapy. Residents are actively involved with many clinical procedures, including but not limited to, CT-based and conventional simulations, IMRT and 3D conformal treatment design and planning, the planning and delivery of HDR and LDR brachytherapy, total body irradiation (TBI), stereotactic body radiotherapy, Tomotherapy, GammaKnife stereotactic radiosurgery (SRS) and Proton Treatment.

Our program places a very strong emphasis on resident education.  Fridays for the residents are protected time and are dedicated almost solely to resident education and they have lectures on clinical radiation oncology, radiation physics and radiobiology. Our residents routinely attend weekly disease-specific multidisciplinary tumor boards, weekly departmental "New Patient," "Planning Rounds," "Morning Report," & "Chart Rounds" conferences, and monthly grand rounds. Rutgers CINJ and the Department each host monthly Grand Rounds with invited expert clinicians and scientists. Weekly journal club helps residents keep pace with the cutting edge in Radiation Oncology. The residency training program participates in the National Resident Matching Program. Outstanding graduates from accredited medical schools are welcome to apply. A copy of 2018-2019 Resident Handbook can be found here.

The program’s goal as far as research time is to give residents the opportunity to perform the research that is of their particular interest and that may help them start their academic careers. Each resident has at least 6 months of elective time, which they can use for outside rotations or to do a research project. Residents who would like to pursue a more involved research project can apply to the program director for up to 12 months of research elective. With the 12 month elective, past residents have worked on clinic research projects, participated in writing protocols, and also performed bench research.

If you have additional questions about the program, feel free to contact us directly.


Residency Program Contact Information:

Residency Program Coordinator:  Angelina Acevedo (acevedad@cinj.rutgers.edu)

Program Director: Sung Kim (sk1375@cinj.rutgers.edu).

Associate Residency Program Director:  Joseph Weiner (weinerjp@cinj.rutgers.edu)

 

Medical Physics Residency Program (CAMPEP-Accredited)

Program Director: Ke Nie, PhD, Associate Professor

Program Associate Director: Irina Vergalasova, Ph.D., Assistant Professor

The Radiation Oncology Medical Physics Residency Program at Rutgers Cancer Institute of New Jersey and Rutgers Robert Wood Johnson Medical School is CAMPEP-accredited and intended for individuals seeking initial clinical experience as a radiation oncology physicist.  Residents engage in a broad range of clinical duties in a well-equipped radiation oncology department with experienced physicists with both clinical and academic expertise.  Graduates are eligible to take the American Board of Radiology certification exam in Therapeutic Medical Physics and perform as independent, qualified medical physicists.  

Prospective Applicants:

Applicants should hold either a CAMPEP-accredited M.S. or Ph.D. in Medical Physics or a Ph.D. in a related field (e.g., physics, engineering) with additional medical physics coursework.  Coursework requirements for prospective applicants may be satisfied by enrolling in the Rutgers Graduate School of Biomedical Sciences Medical Physics program: http://rwjms.rutgers.edu/gsbs/CertificateinMedicalPhysics.html.

The specific prerequisites for prospective applicants to medical physics residency may be found here: http://www.campep.org/ProspectiveApplicants.asp

Our program participates in the AAPM and SDAMPP-sponsored Medical Physics Matching Program:

https://natmatch.com/medphys/

Qualified applicants may apply to the residency program by enrolling in the match program and then submitting an application through the AAPM Common Application Program: http://aapm.org/cap/

New residency openings are generally posted in the autumn with a December application deadline.  Selected applicants will be invited to interview on-campus at their own expense.  Interviews are typically conducted starting January.  Newly hired residents normally begin work on July 1.  The program has funding for up to three full-time residents. 

The Program:

The 2-year program conforms to the CAMPEP standards for a Radiation Oncology Physics Residency Curriculum: http://www.campep.org/ResidencyStandards.pdf

The program is housed under Rutgers Robert Wood Johnson Medical School (RWJMS) Graduate Medical Education (GME).  Physics residents are considered house staff and receive benefits and pay in accordance with GME policies.  http://rwjms.rutgers.edu/education/GME/#

Residents work primarily at the Robert Wood Johnson University Hospital (RWJUH) in New Brunswick, New Jersey, with the opportunity to rotate to other affiliated hospitals.  Residents work alongside 7 staff physicists and 3 staff dosimetrists at RWJUH. 

By the end of the first year, residents will have received at least 6 months of clinical experience in each of external beam treatment planning and delivery, brachytherapy, and equipment calibration and quality assurance.  In the second half of residency, using skills acquired in the first year, residents will gain experience performing independent staff physicist duties.  In addition, they will receive at least 3 months clinical experience in each of Mevion proton therapy and Gamma Knife stereotactic radiosurgery.  Residents will be given every opportunity to perform acceptance, commissioning, shielding calculations, special treatments, etc. in a real clinical setting.  However, should a lack of such activities arise, educational projects may be undertaken by the resident during this year to address this. 

Residents attend and fully participate in weekly chart rounds, clinical lectures, physics/dosimetry meetings, and physics journal club, in which topical professional and research developments in the field are examined.

All residents are encouraged to engage in research projects and will be given the opportunity to present at and attend professional conferences.

The Program Statistics: 

Residency Program Graduate Statistics
Graduating Class

# of Graduates

# Certified

# in clinical positions

# in academic positions

# in industry positions

# in other positions

2010

2

2

-

2

-

-

2011

1

1

-

1

-

-

2012

1

1

-

1

-

-

2013

2

2

1

1

-

-

2014

0

-

-

- - -
2015
1
1
-
1
-
-
2016 2 2 - 2 - -
2017 1 1 - 1 - -
2018 1 - 1 - - -
2019 2 - 1 1 - -

Residency Program Application Statistics

Entering Class

# Applicants

# Accepted

2008-2009

3

2

2010

19

1

2011

69

1

2012

92

2

2013

34*

1

2014

164

1

2015

88

4**

2016
119
1
2017 126 2
2018 106 1
2019 130 2

* In 2013, there was initially no position available.

** In 2015, one accepted candidate left the program and was replaced.  One candidate accepted our offer but later chose not to begin the program and was replaced

 

Questions regarding the program may be directed to:

Ke Nie, PhD, Associate Professor

Program Director, Medical Physics Residency
Department of Radiation Oncology
Rutgers Robert Wood Johnson Medical School
Rutgers Cancer Institute of New Jersey
195 Little Albany St, Room 2038
New Brunswick, NJ 08901

kn231@cinj.rutgers.edu

Updated June, 2019

Medical Physics Certificate Program (CAMPEP-Accredited)

Program Director:Dr. Irina Vergalasova

Program Goal and Objectives

The Radiation Oncology Medical Physics Certificate Program at Rutgers Cancer Institute of New Jersey and Rutgers-Robert Wood Johnson Medical School is under the umbralla of Rutgers School of Graduate Studies. It is designed for students without an accredited medical physics graduate degree seeking to enter the field of medical physics.  It has long been recognized within the profession that many potential medical physicists may have already completed or mostly completed their graduate education before considering a career in medical physics.  For such people, the certificate program offers a path to the profession by satisfying coursework requirements for entering an accredited medical physics residency, an essential step towards eventual board-certification and becoming a practicing medical physicist. The applicants should hold a Ph.D. (D.Sc) degree in Physics or Physics related scientific disciplines (e.g., engineering). The people who complete the certificate courses may be eligible for application for medical physics residency program.

Eligibility

Students entering a medical physics certificate program are required to have completed a doctoral degree in physics, physical science, or engineering, in addition to undergraduate coursework that is at least equivalent to a minor in physics (i.e. on that includes at least three upper-level undergraduate physics courses that would be required for a physics minor).

Individual courses within the program may be taken by non-matriculating students, as permitted by the Program Director.  Please contact us for more information.

Application to the Program

Once the complete application packet is received by our administrative coordinator, the entire packet is forwarded to the admissions committee for review. Application packet review consists of evaluation of doctoral training, relevance of field of study, core physics requirements, interest in pursuing medical physics, etc. If the committee decides the application packet is satisfactory to pre-defined standards, the applicant will be invited to coordinate a Skype interview with program directors, Dr. Vergalasova and Dr. Schein, who will report back to the admissions committee after the interview for a final decision. The candidate will be then notified via official email correspondence regarding their admission status into the program.

To download the application materials, please check here.

Curriculum

The certificate program is comprised of the six core courses, divided into 18 credits. Six of the seven courses are taught in-person at the New Brunswick campus. One course (Anatomy & Physiology) is currently offered online and can be taken either semester, as preferred by the student.

FALL Course Number Credits
Principles of Radiobiology MPHY 5045S 2
Radiological Physics and Dosimetry MPHY 5020S 3
Fundamentals of Medical Imaging MPHY 5015S 3
SPRING
Radiation Safety and Protection MPHY 5040S 2
Radiation Therapy Physics MPHY 5010S 3
Applications of Radiobiology MPHY 5035S 2
ONLINE
Anatomy and Physiology MPHY 5030S 3

For information regarding tuition and fees, please click here.

Program Statistics

Certificate Program Application and Graduate Statistics
Entering Class
# Applicants
# Accepted
# of Graduates
2014
4
3
2
2015
0
0
0
2016
0
0
0
2017
1
1
NA
2018
5
3
1

 

More Information About Medical Physicists

More information about “The Medical Physicist” and “The Roles, Responsibilities, and Status of the Clinical Medical Physicist” is available at http://www.aapm.org/publicgeneral/default.asp

Further information regarding the application process is available by contacting:

Dr. Irina Vergalasova
Assistant Professor
Department of Radiation Oncology
Rutgers-Robert Wood Johnson Medical School
Rutgers Cancer Institute of New Jersey
195 Little Albany St, Room 2013
New Brunswick, NJ 08901
irinav@cinj.rutgers.edu

Dr. Lee Ann Schein
scheinla@rwjms.rutgers.edu
(732) 235-3446

Radiation Dosimetrist Program

Program Director at RWJUH: Rihan Davis, B.S., CMD

This dosimetrist training program is affiliated with the Dosimetrist Program of Thomas Jefferson University. Each year, one dosimetrist student is selected through a matching process and rotates through each clinical section of the department. Under the guidance of the chief of physics and the chief of dosimetry, each student is expected to be familiar with every clinical aspect of a radiation oncology department and to gain hands-on clinical experiences of treatment planning. After one year of academic education at Thomas Jefferson University and hands-on clinical training at RWJUH and with an additional six month either volunteering or working as a dosimetrist in a radiation oncology facility, the students are eligible to sit for board certification. The students who complete the program and the clinical rotation should be able to conduct duties of a medical dosimetrist. More information is available by contacting:

Rihan Davis, B.S., CMD
Department of Radiation Oncology
Robert Wood Johnson University Hospital
1 Robert Wood Johnson Place
New Brunswick, NJ 08903
Phone: 732-253-3939
Email: Rihan.Millevoi@rwjbh.org

Precision Radiation Oncology Fellowship

Fellowship Director: Rahul Parikh, MD

This is a modular 6-month or 12-month radiation oncology fellowship that will offer advanced training in Precision Radiation Oncology.  We refer to this fellowship as modular because the trainee will be able to create 3-month blocks of specialty training in proton beam therapy, high-dose-rate brachytherapy, and/or intracranial and extracranial stereotactic radiosurgery (SRS).  In addition, the fellow may work on a clinical research project in Precision Radiation Oncology under the direction of the Fellowship Director.  This will allow a degree of customization within the fellowship that matches the interest of the trainee. 

Modules

The proton therapy module will allow the fellow to gain experience in the planning of proton therapy cases and learn the principles behind proton beam therapy and treatment planning specifics.  This module will also allow for additional experience in pediatric malignancies, which are frequently treated with proton therapy.  During the brachytherapy module, the fellow may learn how to perform high-dose-rate brachytherapy procedures for the prostate gland, for the GYN tract, and for the treatment of breast cancer.  Additional brachytherapy experiences will include brachytherapy for soft tissue sarcomas and luminal brachytherapy in the esophagus, the bronchi, and the bile ducts.  Within the stereotactic radiosurgery module, the fellow will learn indications and techniques for the treatment of benign and malignant intracranial tumors with single-fraction SRS using the Gamma Knife® Icon™ machine.  In addition, indications for stereotactic ablative body radiotherapy (SABR) for extracranial sites will also be observed and planned by the fellow.  Fellows may also consider a clinical research module where they will learn about study design and implementation including data analyses.

Duration

This is a modular 6-month or 12-month radiation oncology fellowship position. The minimum fellowship period is 6 months.

Eligibility

The prerequisite for this program is the successful completion of an accredited Radiation Oncology Residency program.

Number of Fellows: 1

How to Apply

Nominations will be reviewed by the Precision Radiation Oncology Fellowship Review Committee. Candidates will be notified of the final decision by November 1, 2018.  

Applicant packets should include:

  • A nomination letter from the Department Chair which should include a statement affirming institutional commitment to protected time for the applicant to complete training program

  • A personal statement from the candidate which should address the following:

  • A description of the candidate’s career plan

  • How will this fellowship influence the applicant’s career?

  • A discussion of the specific modules, or clinical research, that the applicant is interested in and how this knowledge will be applied at the home institution at the completion of the fellowship

  • Candidate’s CV following the NIH Biosketch format:  NIH Biosketch: Sample/Instruction Form - grants.nih.gov

Submission Steps

Complete applications should be submitted to Sharda Kohli at kohlish@cinj.rutgers.edu

Deadline

Deadline to submit is no later than September 3, 2018. Please use the subject line below with your submission:

Precision Radiation Oncology Fellowship and provide your contact information. 

Fellows

2017:  Dodul Mondal, MBBS, MD, DNB, All India Institute of Medical Sciences

Contact Information:

Rahul R. Parikh, MD
Associate Professor and Director of Proton Therapy Service
Department of Radiation Oncology
Rutgers Robert Wood Johnson Medical School 
Rutgers Cancer Institute of New Jersey 
Rutgers, The State University of New Jersey
195 Little Albany Street
New Brunswick, NJ 08903-2681

parikhrr@cinj.rutgers.edu