High School Education

Faculty in the Department of Cancer Biology offer opportunities to rising juniors and seniors for summer cancer research internships.  There are specific summer programs available for students in the School District of Philadelphia as well as outside of Philadelphia.  

Undergraduate Education

The Department of Cancer Biology works closely with Penn’s Center for Undergraduate Research and Fellowships (CURF) to place interested undergraduates into appropriate research opportunities. Our primary goal is to enable talented students in their first or second year of college to find a suitable laboratory in which to pursue research during semesters and summers. For example, interested students in the University Scholars’ and Penn Undergraduate Research Mentoring (PURM) programs are encouraged to consider research opportunities in the Department. Many undergraduate students perform year-long independent study classes that form the basis of their thesis work.

Cancer Cell Biology (BIOL 407), designed and taught by Dr. Brian Keith, has been offered annually through the Biology Department in the School of Arts and Sciences since 2002. It is a seminar course limited to 30 and is offered to juniors and seniors with strong backgrounds in cell biology and genetics. The College of General Studies has also incorporated a version of BIOL407 into its regular post-baccalaureate Biology curriculum. In 2010, Dr. Keith received the Provost’s Award for Teaching Excellence by Non-Standing Faculty, in recognition of BIOL 407’s success. In addition, each Spring Dr. Chodosh teaches cancer biology to undergraduate non-biology majors as part of BIOL 015 (Biology of Human Disease).

Graduate Education

Faculty in the Department of Cancer Biology are highly engaged in the educational mission of the School of Medicine and the University. Students in Biomedical Graduate Studies can obtain a Ph.D. degree by pursuing original research in laboratories of the Department of Cancer Biology. The Cancer Biology subgroup of the Cell and Molecular Biology Graduate Group (CAMB) consists of approximately 90 PhD, MD/PhD, and VMD/PhD students. The Cancer Biology Program oversees curriculum and specific programs including regular student seminars, faculty mini-talks, and academic and career advising for students in this subgroup. 

Department members are also highly active in graduate classroom teaching and co-direct several major courses in the Cancer Biology curriculum. These include CAMB 530 (Cell Cycle, Genome Integrity and Cancer – Drs. Roger Greenberg and Irfan Asangani), CAMB 701 (Tumor Microenvironment - Dr. Sandra Ryeom) and CAMB 704 (Stress Responses and Metabolism in Cancer- Drs. Katy Wellen and Terence Gade)

  • Penn School of Medicine Biomedical Graduate Studies

Medical Education

The Department is committed to broadening its contribution to teaching cancer biology within the Medical School curriculum. Each fall, Dr. Chodosh directs Frontiers in Cancer Biology (FRO 514), a highly popular course for 4th year medical students focused on the most important developments in basic and translational science that will lay the foundation for 21st century medicine. In addition, Dr. Roger Greenberg co-directs Topics in Molecular Medicine (CAMB 542). Based upon the success of these courses, plans are underway with the School of Medicine to expand participation of the Department in cancer biology teaching during the first two years of medical school.