Medical Student Opportunities
Inquiries from visiting medical students and residents for clinical externships and/or research electives are welcomed. Applications are reviewed on a case-by-case basis. KU School of Medicine also offers a summer research fellowship with a stipend to medical students completing their first or second year of pre-clinical work.
Radiation oncology overview
What is radiation oncology?
Radiation oncology is a field in medicine that uses ionizing radiation to treat patients with cancer and other benign condition. The goal is to deliver radiation precisely to a defined target while providing minimal damage to surrounding normal tissue.
How long is residency?
Residency is a total of five years. Some institutions have a built-in first year of general medicine, while others ask that you apply to a separate internship. The internship can be a preliminary year in pure medicine, pediatrics, or surgery.
Are there fellowships following residency?
Fellowships are not required for the field; however, there are numerous fellowships across the country, including those in pediatrics, research, brachytherapy, protons, and various subsites.
Is applying to radiation oncology competitive?
Most programs look favorably at above-average board scores, research both in- and outside the field, class rank and recommendation letters from radiation oncologists.
What is a typical week like in radiation oncology?
A resident's day varies from day to day. Typically, departments operate Monday through Friday as outpatient practice. As a resident, you will typically see consults, attend to follow-ups, and plan and deliver treatment. Treatment planning typically includes simulating the patient prior to treatment in the appropriate position, outlining tumor volumes and normal structures to plan treatment fields and reviewing treatment plans with dosimetry/physics.
What is on call like for a radiation oncology resident?
Residents on call do not stay in-house but are available by pager for patient issues and emergency consults. On call is usually by one-week increments.
How do you become board certified as a radiation oncologist?
Physicians must pass one oral and three written (biology, physics and clinical) exams during the duration of the residency program.