The field of medicine is facing a significant shortage of well-trained and qualified clinical medical physicists, practitioners in the specialties of therapeutic radiological physics, diagnostic imaging physics, nuclear medicine physics, and medical health physics, or radiation protection. With each passing year, this shortage expands because of the increased use of complex technology in such fields as radiation oncology and medical imaging.
As a practicing clinical physicist for many years, I am well aware of the critical need for medical physicists. That is why in 2007 I joined the faculty of the University of Pennsylvania to develop Penn's new Master of Medical Physics (MMP) Program.
The MMP Program meets the academic and career needs of technically prepared college graduates who seek to combine their interests in graduate physics with career opportunities in the medical research and clinical environments. Penn's MMP Program offers the best, most well-rounded medical physics education possible, balancing classroom, laboratory, and clinical experiences.
How does Penn's Master of Medical Physics Program differ from others?
- Housed within Penn's College of Liberal and Professional Studies, the MMP Program was created as a true partnership between, and with the full support of, Penn's Department of Physics and Astronomy in the School of Arts and Sciences and the Departments of Radiology and Radiation Oncology in Penn's School of Medicine.
- MMP Program courses are taught by faculty who are experts in their fields, from traditional physics faculty to clinical medical physics faculty to physicians who also teach at Penn's School of Medicine.
- MMP students will gain valuable clinical experience in world-class facilities at the University of Pennsylvania Health System's new Perelman Center for Advanced Medicine, including the Roberts Proton Therapy Center.
- Outstanding MMP students may be selected to stay on for a two-year medical physics residency program in the University of Pennsylvania Health System—preparing them for certification by the American Board of Radiology.
Penn's Master of Medical Physics Program may be of particular interest to some of your students who may still be finalizing their graduate school plans. Within the next few weeks, the chair of your department will be receiving a poster that briefly describes the MMP Program. In the meantime, please contact me directly at 215.898.5574 if you have any questions about the program. I look forward to hearing from you.
Kate Spillane, PhD, DABR
Director, Master of Medical Physics Program
University of Pennsylvania