School of Radiation Therapy: FAQs

1. How long is the program?

23 months, including summers.

2. What are the hours?

Monday through Friday, 8:00 AM to 4:00 PM, or 9:00 AM to 5:00 PM. Day classes only.

During the first semester, students are required to attend Saturday workshops. During senior year, students are required to attend clinical training at 6:00 am on certain days for training on treatment unit warm-up procedures.

3. What is the cost of tuition?

Tuition costs $5,000 per year. Textbooks will be loaned to students; if students desire to keep the textbooks, they must purchase them. The cost of textbooks for the program ranges between $500 and $700. Uniforms are provided free of charge.

4. Is financial aid available?

Yes, and guaranteed student loans are also available to those who qualify. Once accepted into the program, you should complete the FAFSA form online.

5. Are there any prerequisites to enter the program?

Applicants must be 18 years of age and possess an Associates Degree from an accredited college with a minimum GPA of 2.5. In addition, all applicants must have completed at least one-full semester of college-level pre-calculus and college-level human anatomy and physiology, with a minimum grade of a C in each course. A lab section for anatomy and physiology is strongly recommended. All applicants must be US citizens or legal residents. International candidates with student visas are not eligible to apply.

6. Will I be scheduled for an interview if I pass the entrance examination?

Not necessarily. Keep in mind that only the top 40 scorers who pass the entrance examination will be interviewed. It is important to score well in the entrance examination to have a chance for an interview.

7. Will the hospital place me in a job after graduation?

No. We will coordinate site visits to other facilities during the program and assist graduates in securing employment upon graduation. However, while we do provide some assistance in securing employment upon completion of the program, we do not guarantee employment.

8. What is the salary like for this profession?

Very competitive. Salaries in the New York City area may start at $72,000 or higher for entry-level positions.

9. Can I transfer credits from other schools?

No. This is a hospital-based program, geared specifically toward radiation therapy. You may, however, transfer credits from this school, should you wish to further your education.

10. Are evening classes available, and can I start in a January semester?

There are no evening or weekend classes available; it is strictly Monday through Friday during the day. During the first semester, students should expect four to six Saturday workshop sessions as well. Each class starts in September.

11. Is housing or parking available?

No.

12. How many students are accepted per year?

Six to nine students are accepted per year.

13. I have completed one year of study in radiation therapy technology at another institution. Can I complete my second year at your school?

No, we do not have a transfer policy. All applicants, regardless of prior academic standing, are required to complete the two-year program.

14. I am currently in the country with a student visa. Do you sponsor applicants with student visas?

No, we are not approved to enroll or sponsor applicants with a student visa.

15. What does the entrance examination consist of? Do you provide sample test material?

The entrance examination, a requirement for all applicants, consists of three major components, plus a writing section. The subject matter is as follows:

  • English skills — verbal analogies, vocabulary, and spelling
  • Health science knowledge — college level anatomy and physiology, cell biology, basic physics, etc.
  • Mathematics — basic arithmetic functions, decimals, fractions, percentages, ratios, basic college algebra, exponential functions, logarithmic functions, geometry, etc.
  • Essay — 30 minutes to respond to the assigned topic

Applicants are advised to review from preparation material for the nursing school entrance examination, college-level anatomy and physiology textbooks, GRE preparation materials, etc. However, any material of a similar nature will be appropriate. You can find sample questions for the science and math section here.

16. I have a bachelor of science degree. Will I be exempted from taking some science classes?

All applicants, regardless of prior academic standing, are required to abide by our program requirements. No one is exempt from any of the required classes. You will have to take all the required classes.

17. I am a licensed radiology technologist and would like to enroll in your program. Do I have to complete two years of study or will I be able to complete the program in one year?

You will still have to abide by our program requirements. If enrolled in our program, you will need to complete the full two years of study to be eligible for certification and to apply for licensing.

18. Will I have to attend clinical training at other facilities?

No, all instruction, didactic and clinical, takes place at our facilities. Clinical rotations through our regional sites are optional. See the listing of our regional sites.

19. If I do exceptionally well on the entrance examination, will I be assured of a seat in the next fall's class?

No. The entrance examination is an integral part of the admission process; however it is but one of several considerations in determining eligibility into our program. We thoroughly review all application materials, including the personal statement. We also review official school transcripts and note academic performance. In addition, our admission committee will interview only the top 40 scorers on the entrance exam who attain a 75 percent or higher overall average and a 75 percent or higher on the math section. We review your entrance examination writing sample as well in making our student selection.

20. I passed the entrance examination last year and was interviewed. However, I was not accepted into the program. Do I have to take the entrance examination again?

Yes, all candidates for admission must take the entrance examination to be considered for enrollment.

21. I completed the online application and had schools submit official transcripts to your office, but I haven't heard from you regarding entrance examination schedule. Should I expect a notice or a call from the school?

Because of the large volume of applications we receive and our small number of staff, we cannot contact applicants regarding the status of their application. We expect all applicants to follow up on the status of their application by calling or e-mailing us. Remember that only applicants whose application files are complete will be scheduled for the entrance exam. It is your responsibility to ascertain that all the required documents, including official school transcripts, are received by school officials by the February 1 deadline.

22. I live outside of New York. Do you offer the admission test at other sites or online?

The exam is offered only at our main campus, 1275 York Avenue, in Manhattan. If you live outside of the New York State area, you will be expected to be present at our main campus for the exam. All interview's take place in Manhattan as well.

For more information, call or write to:

Linda Schaaf
Program Director
School of Radiation Therapy, Box 22
Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center
1275 York Avenue
New York, NY 10065
E-mail: schaafl@mskcc.org
212-639-6835

Carol A. Sweenie
Clinical Supervisor
School of Radiation Therapy
Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center
212-639-3343
e-mail: sweeniec@mskcc.org