Research Article|Articles in Press

Diversity of medical dosimetry applicants and graduates


      Diversity is a critical component in the advancement of human endeavor in science. Students who complete their education and training at diverse schools can serve patients from a wide range of ethnic backgrounds and promote cross-cultural competence. However, developing a diverse environment of professionals is a long-term effort which often takes generations to complete. Increasing awareness of underrepresented genders and/or minorities helps to establish goals for building a future of improved diversity. Specific to radiation oncology, professions such as medical physicists and radiation oncology physicians have reported underrepresented females and minorities. The problem is that there is a paucity of literature regarding diversity of medical dosimetry professionals. The professional organization does not track diversity data for those members currently working in the profession. Therefore, the purpose of this research was to present aggregate data demonstrating the diversity of medical dosimetry applicants and graduates. The methodology involved quantitative data collection from medical dosimetry program directors which answered the research question, what is the diversity of medical dosimetry applicants and graduates? In comparison to the U.S. population, there were less applicant and accepted students of Hispanic/Latino and African American ethnicities whereas the Asian population was higher. While the U.S. population data reveals 3% more females, there were 35% more female than male applicant and accepted students in this study. However, the results differ significantly from medical physics and radiation oncology physicians with only 30% female clinicians.


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