Skip to Main Content

Fellow Focus in Four: Norin Ansari, MD, MPH, Medical Oncology-Hematology

July 05, 2023

Fellow Focus in Four introduces you to fellows from each section of the Department of Internal Medicine. This month we feature Norin Ansari, MD, MPH, a clinical fellow in medical oncology-hematology.

Why did you choose Yale for your fellowship?

I was a resident in the Yale Primary Care Internal Medicine Residency Training Program. Early in my intern year, I was on the inpatient oncology service, and it was an emotionally challenging experience to care for patients during the worst days of their lives. I became close with one patient who told me matter-of-factly that I had to be an oncologist because patients needed someone like me to guide them through their cancer journeys. I was invited to his funeral a few weeks later and found his family had thanked his oncologist in his obituary. I knew it would be a great privilege to make that sort of impact on someone’s life.

On the inpatient service, I was lucky to work with three female oncology attendings—Barbara Burtness, MD, Tara Sanft, MD, and Andrea Silber, MD—who were powerhouses in all ways. They modeled their compassion, team leadership, and clinical decision-making in a way that left a huge impression on me. I wanted to be just like them!

Along the interview trail for fellowship, I visited a lot of programs, but none had the mix of mentors, support, and flexibility that Yale offered. Everyone at Yale is driven and intelligent, and yet everyone is collaborative and down-to-earth. I’ve worked with my co-chief fellow Kristina Fanucci, MD, on some especially rewarding projects this year, including a DEI curriculum for the fellowship, wellness programming, and legislative advocacy for a bill for fertility preservation for patients with cancer on Medicaid insurance. The Yale Medical Oncology-Hematology Fellowship Program has been supportive of all these various interests. It has been a dream to train here.

What is your five-year goal? 10-year? Overall career?

After graduation, I am starting a position as a hematologist/oncologist in Kansas City. My five-year goal is to become a confident and competent physician who provides excellent care to my patients. Over the next 10 years, I hope to contribute to program development in my work setting and lead projects that will improve overall patient experience. Ultimately, I want to become more involved in patient advocacy, and I want to become a trusted leader in both my field and community.

Perks of Living in New Haven? Connecticut?

New Haven is city enough for this small-town girl! I find it to be peaceful and not so overwhelming in terms of traffic, noise, and pace. Nature is quite accessible in the form of hikes, beaches, and bike trails. There are fun pop-up activities and plenty of restaurants to try in the city. It’s also easy to pick up hobbies. I’ve become an avid spinner at Wheelhouse Cycling Studio in downtown New Haven.

What is a fun fact about you?

I have 40-plus plants in a 600-square-foot apartment. Some may call this an obsession.

Submitted by Serena Crawford on June 30, 2023