Day in the Life of a Resident

Sample week
SAMPLE WEEK: Protected time (i.e. no clinic responsibility) – morning conference, journal club, physics and biology lectures, Friday lecture series.

Morning Conference

Resident-directed morning conferences occur on Monday and Thursday of each week from 7:45-8:30 AM. We devote the entire week to a particular disease, covering epidemiology, natural history, staging, diagnostic work-up, and treatment planning. The supervising attending is also present to aid in literature review and discussion of current developments and controversies.

Treatment Planning Conference

Every Wednesday morning from 7:45-8:30 AM, a conference coordinated by the physics group is presented covering topics related to treatment planning, including dose calculation algorithms, delivery techniques, quality assurance, or target delineation. Residents are not required to present, but they may choose to present on a topic of interest to them, typically in conjunction with physics and dosimetry staff.

Friday Lecture Series

Friday Lectures occur every Friday from 4:00-5:00 PM. Guest lecturers from outside the Department of Radiation Oncology are invited to discuss relevant topics with the residents. Speakers come from all relevant disciplines.  Previous speakers have included urologists, surgical oncologists, medical oncologists, radiologists, gynecologic oncologists, plastic surgeons, dermatologists, and palliative care specialists.  Occasionally, a faculty member from our department will review a disease site in an “oral boards” style question and answer format.

Grand Rounds

Grand Rounds Lectures occur sporadically throughout the year, typically on a weekday from Noon-1:00 PM. During Grand Rounds, a radiation oncology faculty member will present a formal lecture detailing their current research interests.

Morbidity and Mortality

Residents and faculty meet quarterly throughout the year to discuss Morbidity and Mortality, typically on Wednesday mornings. Patients who have experienced treatment breaks, ER visits, or toxicity are discussed with an educational perspective.

Journal Club

Once a month from 12:00-1:00 PM, a physician, physicist or biologist, and a resident select articles for discussion. The entire department meets to discuss these articles over lunch.


Physics lectures are on Tuesdays from 7:30-8:45 am and attended by all residents other than those chiefs who have already passed their radiation physics board examinations. Radiobiology lectures are attended by PGY 2 and 4 residents in the fall and spring on Wednesdays from 4:00-5:15 PM. All residents also attend an 8-week course in Medical Statistics every other year.

Multidisciplinary Tumor Boards

Residents attend multidisciplinary tumor boards relevant to their rotation. The exposure to medical oncology, pathology, surgical oncology, and radiology serves to meet ACGME requirements in these areas.

New! Radiation Oncology Reflection Rounds

These optional sessions provide a supportive environment within which we can come together and debrief about the challenges and joys we face in caring for seriously ill patients. The sessions occur quarterly, and were the result of an idea from one of our residents!

Social Activities

Residents are encouraged to socialize, and the department facilitates this by funding social activities at least once a month. Outings have included happy hours, bowling, kayaking, escape rooms, and more!