You are using an outdated browser. We suggest you update your browser for a better experience. Click here for update.
Close this notification.
Skip to main content Skip to search

COVID-19: Get the latest updates or take a self-assessment.

Harold E. Johns Studentship Program

The objective of the Harold E. Johns Studentship Program is to promote interest in the field of medical physics among undergraduate students, and to encourage these students to continue their studies and pursue careers in the field of medical physics in oncology in the Ontario cancer system.

Each studentship recipient will be matched with a supervisor at the centre at which they are completing their studentship. The recipient will work closely with their supervisor on a specific project/series of projects for the duration of the studentship.

The studentship funding will be directed from Ontario Health (Cancer Care Ontario) to the host cancer centre for administration of the student’s stipend; it is not paid directly to the awardee. However, the successful student is encouraged to record this studentship as an Award in their Curriculum Vitae.

At the end of the studentship term, each studentship recipient is required to complete a student report of approximately 5 pages in length, which must include the following sections:

  • Project Description (including abstract, introduction, methodology, results, discussion, conclusion, references)
  • Self-Reflection (including experience impact, future educational and career aspirations)

 Any one of the following report formats is acceptable, provided it contains the sections outlined above:

  • A set of slides summarizing the work, as presented to the host institution at the conclusion of the project
  • A report, as required by the student's home university (e.g., co-op internship programs)
  • A draft manuscript written in a journal publication format with the self-reflection section attached

Reports must be submitted by the studentship recipients to the Ontario Health (Cancer Care Ontario) Radiation Treatment Program and its Coordinator of Medical Physics Education.

Only electronic copies will be accepted.


The studentship is approximately 4 months long.


A total of up to 15 awards are offered across Ontario, 1 in each of the following Regional Cancer Programs located at the following centres:

  • Cancer Centre of Southeastern Ontario (Kingston)
  • Carlo Fidani Regional Cancer Centre (Peel)
  • Grand River Regional Cancer Centre (Grand River)
  • Juravinski Cancer Centre (Hamilton)
  • Walker Family Cancer Centre (St. Catharines)
  • London Regional Cancer Program (London)
  • Northeast Cancer Centre (Sudbury)
  • Northwestern Ontario Regional Cancer Centre (Thunder Bay)
  • Odette Cancer Centre at Sunnybrook Health Sciences Centre (Toronto)
  • Princess Margaret Cancer Centre (Toronto)
  • R.S. McLaughlin Durham Regional Cancer Centre (Durham)
  • Simcoe Muskoka Regional Cancer Centre (Barrie)
  • Stronach Regional Cancer Centre (Newmarket)
  • The Ottawa Hospital Regional Cancer Centre (Ottawa)
  • Windsor Regional Cancer Program (Windsor)

This is a 1-time award; applicants will be considered ineligible if they have previously held a Harold E. Johns Studentship.

To be eligible for a Harold E. Johns Studentship Program, an applicant must be either:

  • an undergraduate student enrolled in a physics program or a program of a related discipline at a recognized university who is returning to undergraduate studies in the term following the studentship or
  • a student in the final year of undergraduate studies or who has recently completed undergraduate studies in a physics program or program of a related discipline and can provide proof of application and/or enrolment in a graduate program in physics or biophysics at a recognized university at the time of application 

Studentships are awarded on the basis of:

  • academic achievement (minimum GPA of 3.30, as calculated according to percentage to GPA conversion scheme of the applicant’s university)
  • demonstrated interest in the field of medical physics


To apply, send a copy of your university transcript, curriculum vitae (CV) and a letter detailing why you are interested in medical physics to the local program director. Application deadlines vary based on the hosting Regional Cancer Program and centre. For more information, please contact the appropriate program director.

Program Directors

Dr. Harold E. Johns (1915-1998) was a Canadian physicist noted for his extensive contributions to the field of medical physics. Dr. Johns invented and developed the Cobalt-60 machine, which had an immediate impact on cancer survival rates, enabling radiation medicine professionals to treat deep-set and difficult to access tumours. The machine represented a major technological advancement and his work launched the development of cobalt therapy for the treatment of cancer. This is still the primary mode for radiation treatment in many developing countries that lack access to more modern therapies. Dr. Johns’ work was influential in the early development of CT scanners and the definition of mammographic imaging. He also did significant work in showing the DNA damage in cells exposed to ultraviolet rays. His book, The Physics of Radiology, is considered to be the premiere text in the field of medical physics.

Dr. Johns garnered many awards and accolades throughout his career. He was an Officer of the Order of Canada, a recipient of the Queen's Jubilee Medal, and the first to receive the Medal of Honour from the Canadian Medical Association – the highest honour the Association can bestow on a person who is not a member of the medical profession. Dr. Johns was a true pioneer in the field of medical physics, and the Harold E. Johns Studentship Program is named in his honour.

Sources: The Canadian College of Physicists in Medicine, The Ontario Institute for Cancer Research, The Canadian Medical Hall of Fame

For more information about the Harold E Johns Studentship Program, email the Ontario Health (Cancer Care Ontario) Radiation Treatment Program.