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Breast Pathology Fellowship

About the Program

The Breast Pathology Fellowship at the University of Rochester Medical Center is a one year program that provides a thorough exposure to diagnostic surgical pathology of the breast as well as multidisciplinary management of breast disease. The main objective of the program is to provide the fellow with proficient diagnostic skills, in-depth understanding of the implications of pathologic diagnoses in the management of breast cancer patients, and a unique translational research experience. The fellow will conduct intraoperative gross examinations of breast specimens, sign out both in-house breast cases and consultation cases from outside clinics and hospitals, and discuss the cases at the weekly Multidisciplinary Breast Care Clinic Conference. The fellow will also have the opportunity to conduct clinical and/or translational research projects which will be tailored to meet the individual's interests. The breast pathology subspecialty is comprised of 5 breast pathologists under the leadership of Dr. David Hicks, an internationally recognized breast pathologist. Our subspecialty is committed to providing outstanding diagnostic services for excellent patient care and preparing the next generation of pathologists to be experts in the challenging field of breast pathology.


Applicants must be board certified or eligible in Anatomic Pathology or Anatomic and Clinical Pathology and be eligible for a license to practice medicine in New York State.


One position is available each academic year.


The goal of the breast pathology fellowship program is to provide in depth clinical, research and teaching experience in the field of breast pathology so that at the end of the year, the fellow has achieved expertise in the field and is prepared to practice independently in either an academic or community hospital setting. This goal will be accomplished by offering a well-structured curriculum with responsibilities for trainees as follows:

  1. Review and signout of breast cases: The fellow will be responsible for reviewing and dictating the breast cases (including consults and referrals from outside institutions) and signing out those cases with an attending breast pathologist on a daily basis. This includes those breast cases which are not handled by the daily resident assigned to biopsy/gross signout.
  2. Intraoperative gross consultations: The fellow will participate in the evaluation of all breast surgical specimens submitted for intraoperative gross assessment under the supervision of an attending breast pathologist.
  3. Reporting of biomarkers: The fellow will gradually develop expertise in interpreting and scoring the IHC results of estrogen and progesterone receptors and HER-2/neu overexpression by reviewing the IHC slides independently and signing out with the attending breast pathologist daily. He/she will also be trained in interpreting FISH results for HER-2/neu gene amplification.
  4. Teach and supervise residents: The fellow will have an active role in teaching and supervising residents in the grossing room and will assist them in formulating gross and microscopic diagnoses when needed. He/she will prepare and give didactic lectures and unknown slide conferences for house staff and medical students when needed.
  5. Multidisciplinary rotations: The fellow will have one week rotations in breast imaging, breast surgery, medical oncology and radiation oncology at the Comprehensive Breast Care Center at our Wilmot Cancer Institute. This will give him/her an insight into the significant role of the integrated multidisciplinary approach in treating breast cancer and will provide him/her with a better understanding of the clinical and management implications of pathologic diagnoses.
  6. Multidisciplinary case conferences: The fellow will present the pathology findings at the weekly multidisciplinary case management conference. This is an excellent opportunity to interact with clinical colleagues and strengthen interpersonal communication skills.
  7. Elective rotation: The fellow will be given an opportunity to rotate in a second subspecialty of his/her choice within the department, if requested.


The breast pathology subspecialty is active in clinical, translational and collaborative research focused at understanding the biology and behavior of various types of breast cancers and associated high-risk lesions. The fellow is expected to participate in at least one clinico-pathological or translational research project during the year. He/she will be encouraged to present his/her work at any major breast pathology meeting and/or the annual USCAP meeting.


Rochester is a midsize city in western New York with miles of lakeshore, endless summer festivals and winter sports. Located in the Finger Lakes Region, Rochester offers its residents a variety of outdoor activities. As the home for internationally known Eastman School of Music, Rochester is also an ideal place for music lovers.


Commensurate with the level of training.

To Apply

Applications should be submitted before December 31 of the previous year and must include the curriculum vitae, personal statement, three letters of recommendation, and copies of USMLE scores.

Now accepting applications for positions for 2019-20. 


Melissa Sullivan
Education Coordinator
(585) 276-6401


Dr. Linda Schiffhauer
Fellowship Co-Director
Professor, Department of Pathology and Laboratory Medicine
Phone: 585-275-3270 

Dr. Bradley Turner
Fellowship Co-Director
Assistant Professor, Department of Pathology and Laboratory Medicine
Phone: 585-341-6597

Mailing Address: 
University of Rochester Medical Center
601 Elmwood Ave, Box 626
Rochester, NY 14642