Akhil Tiwari — Medical Dosimetry

Akhil Tiwari, Medical Dosimetry Program

“Your worst day at work is better than a patient’s best day of treatment.”

When Akhil Tiwari, 25, heard these words during a clinical staff meeting, they more than resonated with him. They became the driving force behind his mission to work for an academic center focused on patient care someday.

The Dallas resident began his academic career at Drexel University in Philadelphia, where he studied health science before transferring to The University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center to pursue a bachelor of science in medical dosimetry.

He became interested in the profession while watching a friend battle cancer. As he explored careers, being a medical dosimetrist – creating the customized radiation treatment plans and dosage calculations for cancer patients – was most appealing. Akhil chose the School of Health Professions because of the small class size (about 20 new students each year) and the connection to MD Anderson.

“MD Anderson sets the standard for a lot of things. Whatever technology is out, a place like this is always first to get it.”

His favorite courses are the clinical education classes because that’s where he gets hands-on experience in his field. He enjoys the thoracic and the central nervous system (CNS) cases most.

“The beam angles are not pre-set, so it’s up to you to come up with your own angles. You get to be more creative,” says the graduating senior, a NASCAR enthusiast and Yankees fan.

Through interactive lectures, clinical rotations, competencies and practicums, students in the medical dosimetry program get a mix of classroom learning and direct training. The school even covered some expenses to attend the American Association of Medical Dosimetrists (AAMD) conference in Seattle. While there, Akhil networked with industry professionals, fellow students and MD Anderson alumni.

After graduation, he’ll be board-eligible to become a certified medical dosimetrist, his ultimate goal.

“If I wasn’t here, I don’t know what I’d be doing. This is what I want to do, and the School of Health Professions gave me the opportunity."