Feb. 6, 2023 — It may appear inevitable that Maggie Rogers, 33, a childhood most cancers survivor, would at some point find yourself pursuing a profession associated to most cancers ultimately. 

She reached that aim a number of weeks in the past when she began working as director of pediatric, adolescent and younger grownup most cancers assist on the American Cancer Society. Her duties are broad, together with directing this system initiatives, tasks and actions round pediatric and younger grownup most cancers. She’ll additionally work on elevating cash from accomplice teams and stakeholders, comparable to different nonprofits and firms.

Her determination to immerse herself within the most cancers universe took a while.

“As a toddler, most cancers was a part of my id,” says Rogers, who was identified with stage III kidney most cancers when she was 4 years previous and recollects beginning kindergarten bald from her intensive chemo remedies. “But to work within the most cancers area and to even have had it initially appeared to be too shut to house.”

With an undergraduate diploma in psychology and a grasp’s in public well being and epidemiology, she pursued well being care-related jobs, which led to her earlier work on the Center to Advance Palliative Care at Mount Sinai Hospital in New York City, the place she labored for the previous 8 years.

While there, her profession objectives started to shift as she started to surprise how she might higher assist sufferers themselves.

“My job at CAPC was faraway from the impression we have been having on precise sufferers since our predominant viewers was well being care professionals caring for sufferers,” she says. “I started pondering I’d be extra able the place there was much more direct impression on sufferers.”

As she received concerned in affected person teams and conversations on Twitter, she additionally began feeling extra comfortable with the potential for transitioning into oncology work.

“I began getting much more snug with the idea of affected person advocacy and knew I used to be in a singular place,” she says. “I started tweeting about my private most cancers expertise and the way this relates to our well being care system.”

About 18 months in the past, she did one thing else that was fairly fulfilling: She joined the affected person advocacy committee on the Children’s Oncology Group, the world’s largest group devoted totally to pediatric most cancers analysis that is supported by the National Cancer Institute.

“This places me within the room the place individuals are speaking about medical trials, how they’re designing them, and my position is to present a affected person voice to inject questions like ‘how is that this trial going to impression fertility,’” she says.

This work helped her notice that she is perhaps prepared to do one thing significant within the most cancers area.

“I spotted I could possibly be in a room speaking about children with most cancers and that I’d be OK,” she says.

The proven fact that the first-ever chief affected person officer on the American Cancer Society was somebody Rogers had labored with over the course of her profession made the choice to apply for the place a straightforward one.

“This job is the right match for me,” she says. “It integrates my training, my private expertise, and my skilled expertise all collectively in a single.”

One of one of the best elements for Rogers: A sense that she’s not alone. 

“My private expertise shapes a lot of the work I do, however everybody on the American Cancer Society is so open about family members who died of most cancers,” she says. “This is so totally different from my final place.”

In truth, Rogers says she typically hid the truth that she had most cancers as a toddler from her co-workers.

“Then somebody outed me and other people have been crying within the workplace,” she says. “It was uncomfortable for a brief time frame. I’m so glad that, on this job, I’m not the token most cancers voice.”

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