First-Ever Hematology-Oncology Fellowship Program Seeded By Philanthropy
Attracting the nation’s best physicians to practice at the Carol G. Simon Cancer Center has always been a top priority. With the launch of a Hematology-Oncology Fellowship Program, that focus continues by providing specialized training to some of the top oncologists in the field of medicine today.
A $346,875 Louise Washington Trust grant, $595,818 (two IRAs and a bequest) from the Estate of Warren R. Neil, Jr., and his wife, Lois, who was a grateful patient of the Carol G. Simon Cancer Center, and a $440,000 bequest from the Estate of Diane Keene brings funding totals to $1,450,000 toward a goal of $2 million.
“We are finalizing an advanced curriculum with a collaborative clinical and research environment in partnership with our colleagues at the Translational Genomic Research Institute (TGen),” Eric Whitman, MD, medical director, Atlantic Health System Cancer Care, said. “The fellows will be trained to be the next generation of outstanding cancer physicians, skilled at providing personalized, compassionate, evidence-based, cutting- edge hematologic and oncologic therapy.”
The Accreditation Council for Graduate Medical Education (ACGME) recently approved the program.
“All elite cancer centers have this kind of dynamic fellowship program,” Mohamad Cherry, MD, MS, Atlantic Health System medical director of hematology, and director of the Hematology-Oncology Fellowship Program, said. “This is a great milestone for the Carol G. Simon Cancer Center, allowing us to recruit top-notch talent into our expanding community. It is an essential step in our development as a world-class cancer center and will further our mission as a destination for advanced care.”
Only four similarly accredited fellowship programs exist in New Jersey and just 152 across the nation.
“At the end of the program, our fellows will be doubly certified in hematology and oncology — a unique distinction,” Dr. Cherry said.
In their final year, fellows will conduct research and complete an advanced two- to three-month rotation in Drug Design and Development at TGen, a national leader in genomic research and a partner in advanced clinical trials at the Carol G. Simon Cancer Center.
The first fellow, Nicole Burak, MD, has been chosen from a rigorous pool of more than 175 applicants, beginning her three-year program in July of 2021. Dr. Burak has served as the chief medical resident at Morristown Medical Center since June of 2020.
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