Company/Organization: John Theurer Cancer Center
Topic of Internship
The John Theurer Cancer Center opened a $130-million, 155,000-square-foot- building that houses 14 specialty divisions along with research and oncology services. It is the number one ranked cancer center in New Jersey listed among the top 50 Cancer Centers by U.S. News and World Report in 2013. The JTCC contains one of the world’s largest blood marrow stem cell transplantation program which is ranked among the top six in the United States—approaching 400 transplants per year and having performed nearly 6,000 transplants since the program’s inception during the year of 1990. This center proudly holds the largest breast oncology program in New Jersey with over 200 dedicated professionals, an advanced-therapy lymphoma division, a multiple myeloma practice that is among the largest in the country, a strong clinical research program, and many other fields of medical expertise. JTCC offers multi-disciplinary expertise and care for tumors, offering patients a broader range of treatment and therapy options. The center takes into account the patient and their mental emotions rather than giving their condition a number while offering them access to some of the most advanced diagnostic and treatment methods for targeted therapies.
Summary of Internship
As an intern representing the John Theurer Cancer Center, I had a taste of what the life of a doctor and, in fact, of any representative in the center is like. Conventionally, interns of the JTCC perform the same work as a volunteer would. At first, I followed my mentor’s guidelines and I transported patients on wheelchairs and filed paperwork. As he gained my trust, I was allowed to work with the social and financial workers of the center and I was exposed to real-life situations for example when a patient is depressed from treatment and is financially unstable at once. Eventually, my internship required a great deal of independence, as I proved myself enough to gain a position in shadowing a doctor working with multiple myeloma and another oncologist who treated breast cancer. Professionalism as well as patience were crucial in my experience because each patient was like a customer who could bring cookies in one day yet threaten to sue the doctor during their next visit. Being spoken to in a professional manner by a person with a PhD whom I respect to an indescribable level had given me confidence to succeed in the medical field, not to mention the advice and experience I had received by taking this internship opportunity.
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