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How to get into medical physics with only a BS in physics

  1. Jul 31, 2008 #1
    Hi everyone. I currently graduated with a BS in Physics, and one area that really intrigues me is medical physics. My question is, how does someone like me go about breaking into the field of medical physics? Ideally, I would like to get some work experience and then apply to grad school. I live in NYC, and would like to stay here, but I can't really find any kind of job that is related to the field. The only thing I can think of doing is try to contact medical physicists at random MRI offices and ask for jobs/help/advice. But I would think there a better way.

    Are there any medical physicists here that could give advice? What would be a good entry level job that would get me started in the field? I appreciate any help you can give.
  2. jcsd
  3. Aug 1, 2008 #2
    You need to go to a Medical Physics graduate program, either MS or Ph.D.. Look at the CAMPEP website for more information.

    I have heard that some locations will still hire a physics bachelor's to sort of be a trainee, but when I was looking into med physics the people I talked to highly discouraged me from even thinking about that--they said it was a very limited way to do it, and I'd still have to get the master's or doctorate. They said to get the degree so that I had the right credentials from the start. (Life took me elsewhere, so that's all I know about it at this point.)
  4. Aug 1, 2008 #3


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    I think KS Physicist has it right. The best way in is through a CAMPEP accredited medical physics graduate program - or an established program that's aiming for accreditation in the coming years.

    What you can look for at your level is a job as a physics assistant - which essentially entails routine quality assurance work. Contact nearby hospitals that offer radiation therapy to see if they have any openings. You can't really "work up" from this position without additional schooling these days though.

    Something else to consider if you're not sure about the extra years of grad school is a radiation therapist program. RTs only take about 2 years to train and they're paid very well.
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