Oncology Internship Program Celebrates 2nd Year of Success 


Marketing Manager

The Oncology CTR Internship Program celebrated its 2nd year in February, yielding remarkable success to date. 

The CTR Internship Program has 3 main objectives:

  1. Help newly certified CTRs gain experience
  2. Build confidence and proficiency in case abstraction
  3. Become successful CTRs

We have now come full circle with our first group of CTR Interns completing their first year as promoted CTRs. Kamilah, Michele, and Zakkiyah have proven success in their new CTR roles. We caught up with Michele and Zakkiyah who both shared their success stories with pride.

Michele Christensen shared that she continues to learn and grow in this ever-transforming field.

“That’s the amazing thing; the Internship Program was just the beginning. With abstraction, there is a confidence building that develops over time. I have learned just how much things evolve in cancer registry, and how my knowledge continues to grow. The internship program laid the foundation and walls; this past year has built on that foundation”.

Michele also took on a new role in our Success Partner Program. The goal of the program is to provide support to newly hired employees as they become acclimated to Registry Partners, and to help foster a rapport with other employees. Michele’s first partner match was with Annalisa H., a CTR Intern who began in July. The match was a perfect pairing, with Michele sharing similar experiences as a previous CTR Intern. 

Zakkiyah Yankene transitioned to a multi-facility CoC Accredited Cancer Program project, where she was able to take her knowledge from her personalized educational plan and apply her new skillset.

“The same support I received during my first year as an Intern did not waver when I transitioned to my new project. There is constant, ongoing support. Everyone I have worked with has been very supportive, but most importantly encouraging”.

Zakkiyah never ceases to amaze us in the Internship Program. Since being promoted, she has continued to build on her arsenal of talents outside of the registry. Zakkiyah reports that she has resumed foreign language classes and learned to knit! 

When asked about her leadership role in the CTR Internship Program, Heather Donohue explained that the program has grown by leaps and bounds over the past 2 years, and how the Interns are an integral part of the success of this program. “With each group, I carefully evaluate and look for ways I can make this program even better for the next group”. Heather shared that an important piece of the evaluation includes seeking and implementing feedback from Interns. “This program is a partnership. We learn from each other”. Heather also reports that the program has now successfully promoted 8 Interns to CTR positions, with 5 Interns active in their first year; all doing amazing! “We measure success in many ways, Quality being one of them, but it has been astounding to see Interns make tremendous improvement on the Skills Assessment”. When compared to the initial Skills Assessment at the onset of the program, the team has seen improvements by as many as 23 points and a time deduction of more than 2 hours from start to finish. Heather went on to explain that together, all pieces tell the story of success. “The success we have seen is owed to the Intern’s diligence and their team’s knowledge, expertise, patience, kindness, and encouragement throughout their program”. 

If you are interested in learning more about our Internship Program or to be notified when we open the program back up click here.