Graduate Medical Education (GME): Surgical Oncology

Fellowship Program Director: Andrew M. Blakely, M.D.

The Surgical Oncology Research Fellowship Program at the National Cancer Institute (NCI) trains surgeons who are committed to academic careers in the expanding field of surgical oncology. The program provides a comprehensive research and clinical experience. Dedicated research time is spent in one of several laboratories with a faculty mentor committed to developing the fellow's investigative skills. Time on the clinical service is characterized by exposure to a broad range of complex pathology, emphasizing multidisciplinary care of oncology patients. Over the course of the fellowship, trainees will develop a solid basis for the conduct of clinical, translational, and laboratory research in oncology that lays the foundation for future specialty training and academic practice.

Program Structure
During the first year, fellows spend six months on clinical rotations. Time is evenly split among the Surgical Oncology, Endocrine Surgery, and Thoracic Surgery services. Fellows provide clinical care for patients enrolled on various clinical research protocols, both from within the Surgical Oncology Program and from across the NIH. The Surgical Oncology service treats patients with gastric, hepatobiliary, colorectal, peritoneal surface, and other malignancies. The Endocrine Surgery service provides treatment for patients with thyroid, parathyroid, and adrenal gland neoplasms as well as neuroendocrine tumors. The Thoracic Surgery service treats patients with primary or metastatic disease of the lung in addition to mediastinal pathology. Clinical management of patients at the NIH is made uniquely complex by investigational agents and advanced stages of disease.

Fellows will spend eighteen months most frequently in one of several laboratories within the Surgical Oncology Program- or the Thoracic Surgery Branch. Placement in another NIH laboratory is possible depending on the individual fellow’s research interests. The overall goal of the research experience is to improve the fellow’s understanding of the experimental scientific method, knowledge of the scientific literature, and ability to formulate and test hypotheses within a specific field of study. Emphasis is placed on the development deeper knowledge of various laboratory techniques, the ability to conduct investigative work independently, and the clinical application of laboratory studies. The NCI and the greater NIH community is home to expansive state-of-the-art research facilities as well as expertise in a wide variety of areas. The fellows work directly with principal investigators and regularly present their research to members of the laboratory and the branch. Presentation at national clinical and scientific meetings is expected and encouraged.

Of note, this research fellowship is not ACGME-accredited and does not constitute SSO-approved subspecialty fellowship training.

Additional Information
Further details can be found at the Surgical Oncology Fellowship Page.

Application Information
Apply to this program through the NIH Graduate Medical Education Application System.

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This page last updated on 12/29/2023

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