Donors Turn Hope Into Reality for Radiation Therapist

Michael Le, B.S., R.T.(T)
Apr. 21, 2016

Michael LeBecause my family had very little means when I was growing up and were always struggling to make ends meet, the mere thought of attending college felt impossible for a long time. Therefore, the idea of continuing on with school after college was nearly impossible for me to fathom.

However, thanks to a Varian Radiation Therapy Scholarship from the ASRT Foundation, that’s exactly what I am doing.

To date, I am the only member of my family who has graduated from college after earning my degree in radiation therapy. I have a younger brother and sister, and I strive to be a good role model for them. I applied for the scholarship that Varian made possible through the ASRT Foundation because I wanted to show my siblings, and myself, that financial hurdles should not be a defining factor in whether we pursue our dreams. I wanted them to see that there are opportunities out there if we take a leap of faith and go for it.

I worked as a radiation therapist for five years before returning to school. During that time, becoming a medical dosimetrist became a professional goal of mine. As a therapist, I saw firsthand the impact of cancer on patients and their families. I was eager to be a part of the creative team that could envision and piece together a treatment plan for patients. My hope is not only to help patients fight the disease, but also to alleviate some of their pain.

Being selected as a recipient of the Varian Radiation Therapy Scholarship by the Foundation has made this hope a possibility, and I am forever grateful to Varian for creating this scholarship. With the help of this scholarship, I was able to enroll in the medical dosimetry program at Suffolk University in Boston — a program that only accepted six students nationwide the semester I was accepted. Without this scholarship, I would not have been able to pay for tuition and pursue my career dreams.

I can’t thank Varian and the ASRT Foundation's donors enough for providing scholarships to aspiring students and professionals such as myself. If not for the generosity of you all, I would not have had the opportunity to continue to advance within the field of radiation oncology. Caring for patients is one of the most rewarding things I’ve ever done, and I am so grateful for all of the donors who have helped me and countless others thrive in this profession.

My new hope is that you will continue to support program opportunities through the Foundation. That way, when I’m able to become a donor myself, I’ll know that I’m in great company as well as giving others the same opportunity that you, as a donor, made possible for me.