April 9 and 10, the first Duke Kunshan Medical Physics Young Talent Program(MPYTP) was successfully held at Duke Kunshan University. Designed to offer a real experience of the Medical Physics Graduate Program at Duke Kunshan, the program attracted over 200 home-university-nominated applicants, out of whom 59 outstanding students were selected from 21 top Chinese universities, including Peking University, Tsinghua University, Shanghai Jiaotong University, Fudan University, and Zhejiang University.
The program kicked off with a welcome speech by David Huang, professor and director of Medical Physics Graduate Program at Duke Kunshan University. Prof. David Huang then turned from his opening talk to a medical physics lecture that introduced the field with fun anecdotes and his personal stories.
“The case of implanting ‘seeds’ to the tumor that Prof. Huang showed us definitely challenged my basic understanding of what medical physicists can do,” said Fangkun Hou, a student from University of Electronic Science and Technology of China, who was thrilled to learn the most advanced techniques in the field of medical physics.
Prof. David Huang, professor and director of Medical Physics Graduate Program
James Bowsher, associate professor of medical physics at Duke Kunshan University, talked about the robotic imaging research he had been working on. And Yun Dong, executive scientist of Shanghai United Imaging Healthcare Co., Ltd., shared his career path and experiences as a practitioner in medical physics.
James Bowsher, associate professor of medical physics
The first day culminated with a featured fieldtrip to Suzhou Municipal Hospital, where the program participants were exposed to various clinical practices of medical physics by visiting radiation therapy, radiology and nuclear medicine departments.
Fieldtrip to Suzhou Municipal Hospital
“It is my first time to have real-world experiences with medical physics. I’m so excited to learn that physicists are able to fine-tune the treatment plans and operation to eliminate treatment defects,” said Liu Qingyuan from Peking University. “I learned what these physicists working in hospital do every day through face-to-face conversation. It is of great help to predict what kind of challenges I may be facing if I become a physicist one day,” added Zhang Zhaohui from Zhejiang University.
Students listening to medical physicists at hospital
Xiangpeng Zheng, adjunct professor of medical physics and chief of Radiation Oncology Department at Shanghai Huadong Hospital, delivered the last lecture on the second day of this two-day program. Students asked over a dozen questions on academic and career topics, ranging from the role of medical physicists, teamwork during treatment planning, to the development of this promising field.
Xiangpeng Zheng, adjunct professor of medical physics and chief of Radiation Oncology Department at Shanghai Huadong Hospital
In addition to the academic and professional exposure during the event, participants also had opportunities to experience the diverse campus life at Duke Kunshan. For example, upon arrival on Duke Kunshan campus, all participants were welcomed with a campus tour and an icebreaker organized by Duke Kunshan’s current medical physics students. It did not take them long to start sharing about their first impressions on social media. “I was pleasantly surprised by Prof. James Bowsher who came to sit down and chat with us during dinner time,” Hanqi Feng, student from Harbin Institution of Technology wrote on WeChat, a popular social media channel in China. A pizza party and a movie night were also organized to allow them to mingle with Duke Kunshan students.
Students playing games at icebreaker
The program ended with an invitation from Danni Shen, education program coordinator of the Medical Physics Graduate Program at Duke Kunshan, to attend the graduate program’s open house in November and to apply for the Medical Physics Graduate Program next year.