Welcoming New UTDRO Trainees

Mar 28, 2017

This winter, UTDRO welcome 10 new trainees to its family. This new group consists of radiation oncology residents, medical physics residents and fellows. Please join us in welcoming this group.

Radiation Oncology Residency (PGY1)

Dana Keilty

Dana is from Mississauga but has spent the last several years in Montreal. She received a BHSc with a minor in French from McMaster University, completed a Master’s thesis exploring biomarkers of tamoxifen response in breast cancer at McGill University, and will be graduating from McGill University’s medical school.

Her first medical student elective was in radiation oncology at Princess Margaret Hospital to explore the field, and she never looked back. Dana has long been attracted to women’s health, but has developed diverse interests under the caring mentorship of preceptors across the country.

Dana enjoys staying active with her miniature dachshund, Diego, cooking, and travelling: she completed high school in Europe, went to the World Cup in Brazil, lived in Israel for a year, and plans to visit Japan before beginning residency.

Dana is honoured tohave the opportunity to join the radiation oncology program at the University of Toronto and looks forward to returning to its nurturing learning environment.

Eli Lechtman

Eli was born and raised in Toronto where he currently resides his wife and two young children. Before pursuing a career in medicine, Eli completed an undergraduate, Masters and PhD in medical physics, with various research interests including quality assurance devices for radiation therapy, and the use of
gold nanoparticles to enhance radiation treatment.

He has a passion for patient care, translatable research, and education in medicine, and hopes to continue innovating in the field of radiation oncology to develop more effective treatments and improve patients’ experiences.

Nauman Malik

Nauman's family moved to Canada when he was ten from Pakistan. He developed an early interest in Life Sciences and went to UTSC to pursue that for his undergrad. During his time there, he volunteered at a family physician's clinic working with many patients, and seeing those patient‐physician interactions really fueled him to seek Medicine as a career.

He moved on to Western University for his MD for the last four years. It is there that he worked closely with the Radiation Oncology program and came to learn about the specialty.

He is now excited to begin the next 5 years of his residency back in Toronto. In his spare time he enjoys playing soccer, running, and backpacking to new countries. He knows 4 languages and is working on a fifth, Mandarin.

Michael Tjong

Michael was born and raised in Jakarta, Indonesia and
immigrated to Vancouver in 2009 for his undergraduate
education at the University of British Columbia majoring in

After four years in Vancouver, he started his medical school at the University of Toronto in 2013. He enjoys playing soccer and tennis, attending TSO events on student’s pricing, and strolling around unfamiliar neighborhoods in Toronto led by Yelp recommendations and a poor sense of direction.

Medical Physics Residency

Eric Da Silva

Eric has a PhD in Physics with a specialization in Biomedical Physics from Ryerson University. Eric is an Assistant Professor at the Department of Physics at Ryerson University.

His research interests include radiation dosimetry, atomic spectrometry, trace element status in humans and the design and application of radiopharmaceuticals. Clinically, he is interested in brachytherapy and the design of novel brachytherapy sources as well as radiopharmaceuticals for application in cancer therapy.

During his Medical Physics Residency, Eric is hoping to gain thorough clinical training in radiation oncology physics. He wants to spend time in the clinic while being exposed to real-world research questions as to help improve radiation-based cancer therapies in the future.

Outside of work, Eric is a classical double bass player and bass-baritone who brews his own mead and beer.

Roja Zakariaee

Roja did her PhD in Medical Physics at University of British Columbia. She carried out research and worked as a Physics Assistant at British Columbia Cancer Agency.

Her PhD research was in cervical cancer Brachytherapy, but she also has clinical interests in Image-guided Adaptive EBRT.

At UTDRO, she hopes to expand and deepen her knowledge in radiation therapy and gain clinical experience as a medical physicist.

Outside of work, when time permits, Roja does oil painting as a hobby and loves Yoga.




Syed Bilal Ahmad

Bilal obtained his M.Sc in Medical Physics from Pakistan Institute of Engineering and Applied Sciences (PIEAS) followed by his PhD from McMaster University. He recently completed a post-doctoral fellowship at Sunnybrook Health Sciences Centre.

He has worked as an  Assistant Professor at PIEAS in the Department of Physics and Applied Mathematics.

His main research interest is the Monte Carlo based radiation dosimetry. He is interested in the dosimetric effects of the patient inhomogenieties and the radiation dose enhancement due the nano-particle based contrast media. He has been involved in the MR linear accelerator technology and would like to continue working towards the clinical implementation of the MR Linac and the 4D treatment planning methodologies.


Shima Yaghoobpour Tari

Shima did her PhD in theoretical physics (General Relativity – Black Holes), followed by a Master’s degree in medical physics at the University of Alberta. Her master’s project, a component of the Cross Cancer Institute's Linac-MR initiative, focused on a non-axial superconducting magnet design for use in a Linac-MR hybrid.


She hopes to become an accomplished medical physicist through the excellent clinical training at UTDRO. She is an academic grandchild of Stephen Hawking.


Outside of Physics, Shima enjoys practicing contemporary dance and going to modern dance performances and ballets.


Radiation Oncology Fellowship


Ramiz Abu-Hijlih

Ramiz completed his radiation oncology residency training at King Hussein Cancer Center, Amman-Jordan in 2014. Then, he was appointed as a radiation oncologist at the same institution. His research focused on functional imaging in radiation oncology. He was presented with the ASCO- International Development and Education Award (IDEA-2014).

During his Fellowship, Ramiz is hoping to acquire cutting edge radiation techniques in GU and sarcoma.

Outside of work, he is interested in sports, and always beats the fellows in PING PONG!

Jan Ponichtera

Jan completed his undergraduate medical degree at the Poznan University of Medical Sciences, Poland and University of Turku, Finland. He then continued his internal medical (MRCP) and clinical oncology (FRCR) training in the United Kingdom. In his last post, Jan worked as a senior specialty trainee in clinical oncology at the Southampton University Hospital.

His primary interest is in gastrointestinal cancers and he presented his research at the national (RCR) and international (ESTRO, DDF) level.

He has joined the Princess Margaret Cancer Center to undertake his Radiation Oncology Fellowship and he works in the Gastrointestinal and Oligometastases Programs.

He is also a keen cyclist and skier and tries to make the most of outdoor opportunities Canada offers.


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