Oncology Surgery Residency Personal Statements

Should I ever complete a similar mental exercise, the title of my autobiography will begin, “[name removed]: Surgeon”. My first year in medical school exposed me to a handful of specialties and dozens of subspecialties. Finding and choosing a specialty was daunting as many appeared to peak my interests. In an attempt to gain better perspective, I decided to spend as much time in the hospital as possible in the summer between my 1st and 2nd years. I contacted several departments at Northwestern Memorial Hospital (NWM) in Chicago about shadowing their physicians. My schedule started me on the Trauma Surgery and Critical Care service and rotated between different departments every week. I never ended up leaving the Trauma Surgery service.


Though I spent time in other department’s clinics and floors, I would always gravitate back to the Trauma service. I was fortunate to be at NWM in June when there is a traditional break between 3rd and 4th year for medical students, leaving me the sole medical student in the entire hospital and the only student on a surgical service. This gave me an unparalleled opportunity to explore my interest in surgery. The residents tried to direct me to what they thought would be interesting cases as well as those that I would be of use. My transforming experience that summer, in particular the 200 or so hours in the hospital those two weeks being the only medical student, exposed me to three aspects of surgery that convinced me that I was destined to be a surgeon: the surgical problems, surgical patients and surgeon characteristics.


Surgical problems and patients are difficult, complex and unique. Surgery is an assault on the human body. A surgeon must contend not only with the patient’s natural decline in health, but also the infliction that we cause trying to help. They must deal with three distinct, but complicated problem areas; pre-operative: whether or not to operate, operative: the marriage of medical knowledge and the technical skill and post-operative: management of wounds, infections and a whole host of potential complications. These problems represent the pinnacle of intellectual challenges and are life altering for patients. I cannot imagine anything more rewarding than dedicating my life to solving them.


The uniqueness of surgical problems requires surgeons to not only be intelligent, diligent physicians, but also creative, good with their hands, work well under pressure, decisive and good team leaders. These are all characteristics that throughout my life I have aspired to. I am eager to realize these aspirations as I continue my medical education as a surgical resident.

An oncology personal statement or pathology residency personal statement has many uses whether it is for a CV or one of the university requirements. Its purpose is to sell to readers. However, it is not about summarizing your experience and skills, but it is about telling why you want to apply to the medical oncology program.

Oncology Personal Statement Length

Many oncology residency programs do not give a specific length in writing applicants personal statement, so some candidates do not know what approach they will use in writing their essay. They do not know whether they will write 500-, 600- or 800-word essay. To ensure of the right length, you may want to check out the official page of the school where to find the information about the personal statement requirements.

⇒ Yale University: There is no stated page limit in writing the cardiology personal statement. For some essays, they require a 250-word essay on any topic.

⇒ Harvard University: If you will need to write a pathology residency personal statement, the maximum page number is two pages with 11 font size, one-inch margins, and double-spaced format. For other essays, it is optional to write a diversity statement.

⇒ Stanford University: The school requires applicants to write about two pages of a personal statement be it radiation oncology essay or gynecology oncology personal statement.

⇒ Columbia University: If you need to write neuro oncology essay, there is no stated personal statement limit. For some essays like optional diversity statement, it should be brief to one page.

⇒ University of Chicago: If you will write a surgical oncology personal statement, it should be about two to four pages. For other essays, length is not stated, but you need to include diversity details in your personal statement.

⇒ NYU: If you applied to the pediatric oncology residency program, you need to write a personal statement, which word limit is not stated, but it is still your task to balance the length and ensure it is not too short and too long. In short, write a succinct personal statement.

⇒ U Penn: If you need to write a pediatric oncology residency personal statement, the limit is two pages, double-spaced. For other essays such as optional diversity statement and an optional essay about the experience, the maximum page is one using double-spaced.

⇒ UVA: In residency in oncology program, there is no stated page limit in writing the personal statement.

⇒ UC Berkeley: Whether you are applying to residency in oncology or any other programs, the maximum number of pages in writing the personal statement is four using double-spaced. For other essays, you need to write an optional diversity statement.

⇒ Duke University: There is no word limit in writing the personal statement of the medical oncology residency program, and it is optional to answer the prompt of the program.

⇒ Michigan University: The medical oncology residency program of the university stated that there is no page limit in writing the personal statement requirements. For other essays such as supplemental essays, there are eight options to choose from. Applicants can choose one or two. There is a one-page limit for supplemental essays using double-spaced and 11 font size.

Best Radiation Oncology Residency Programs: Tips on Writing the Personal Statement

If you have applied to best radiation oncology residency programs, you need to prepare and write a magnificent personal statement. For some tips on how to get started in writing an impressive one, check out the following:

⇒ Map out the structure: To make sure that your medical oncology residency personal statement has a clear theme, you need to map out the whole structure of your paper. Each anecdote that you will include should fit into your strategic framework. You also need to remind your readers about your motivation.

 Excite your reader: Whether you write pediatric oncology residency or any other residency essays, be sure to excite readers with a life- changing story. It can be an inspiration or an experience that gave the direction to your life. In addition, do not also forget to discuss how those experiences or incidents changed you to become a better person. Your story will become your focus in writing your personal statement. A great tip here is that any kind of story can work as long as it will surely demonstrate your motivation and personal growth.

⇒ Awesome writing techniques: Whether you are writing pediatric oncology residency personal statement, you need to use awesome writing techniques. You need to remember that it is better to show than to tell. Unimaginative and plain writing technique will bore your readers.

⇒ Repetitive statements: As much as possible, you need to avoid repetitive statements that are not essential in your personal statement. It only wastes the valuable space in the essay. Or else, your essay will lose focus. It is better to be concise and clear when writing. Do not aim for a very long essay that contains not much substance on it.

 Limits the length: The fact is that the AMCAS application is electronic, and it limits the length of candidate’s personal statement into 5,300 characters. All punctuation marks, paragraph breaks, and spaces are counted as characters as well.

⇒ Model the essay: You can create a good personal statement if you use a writing approach that the other students used in their medical essay. You can opt to use sample outlines, writing instructions as well as sample essays. Using this writing strategy will reduce the stress and the heartache that many applicants are facing in writing their personal statement. By using the approach, you can learn how to layout your essay with content, which is both memorable and engaging.

Application Process for Residency Programs

⇒ ERAS Applications: These four applications are developed in order to serve the needs of every group involved in the application process.

⇒ MyERAS: This is the portion where applicants complete their applications, choose programs, submit materials and assign supporting materials to the selected programs.

⇒ Dean’s office work station: It is a place to upload a medical transcript of records as well as medical school performance evaluations in supporting the applications that you submitted in MyERAS.

⇒ Letter of recommendation portal: This is for LoR authors. It is the place where to submit the letters in supporting the applications submitted by applicants in MyERAS.

⇒ Program directors work station: This is for training programs to review and receive the applications as well as supporting documents.

You need to remember the places where the application is divided. Each of them has their functions.

How It Works

⇒ Candidates receive a token from the dean’s office and they will use it to register in MyERAS.

⇒ Candidates need to complete the MyERAS application, choose the program they want, assign supporting materials as well as apply to the program they want.

⇒ LoR authors and designated dean’s office upload supporting materials.

⇒ Examining the boarding process and receive requests for an official transcript of record.

⇒ The program receives application materials through PDWS.

Radiation Oncology Residency Programs List

⇒ Virginia University

⇒ John Hopkins University

⇒ University of Toronto

⇒ Northwestern University

⇒ University of Minnesota

There you have the radiation oncology residency programs list and the details that you need to know in writing the personal statement. In writing the essay, you need enough time and exert effort in order to create an impressive essay that will make you shine above the rest. Be sure to start early, outline the essay, check on the word limit and answer the prompts correctly, if there are. Finally, spend enough time in reading, proofreading and editing your essay for the best results.

Write an impressive oncology personal statement today!


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