October 9, 2015

Hungarian Alumnus Conducts Life-Saving Cancer Research


Dr. A. Marcell Szasz Dr. A. Marcell Szasz
As a doctor and pathologist, Dr. A. Marcell Szasz has committed his life to improving the health and wellbeing of others. As a participant of the Hungarian-American Enterprise Scholarship Fund (HAESF) and the Fulbright program, Dr. Szasz further honed his life-saving research and leadership skills. In addition to working on his scientific research projects, Dr. Szasz focused on observing local clinical cases, attending clinicopathological rounds, and participating in his host institution’s daily meetings, presentations, and education sessions. 
Dr. Szasz credits his exchange experiences with positively impacting both his professional and personal life explaining, “since returning to Hungary, I routinely call upon not just the technical knowledge I gained as an exchange scholar in the United States, but also the personal experiences from my daily life there to inform, shape, and benefit my collaboration and interaction with my family and friends, patients, colleagues, and mentored students.”
When he returned from his Fulbright program, Dr. Szasz utilized the knowledge and skills he gained to re-train all medical students working on breast cancer research in tissue and sample collection procedures. The new procedures he introduced ensure the collection of more viable samples, less pain for patients, and more successful research results in his work on breast cancer prevention. Together with his supervised PhD students, Dr. Szasz has also initiated a comprehensive registry of data for breast cancer patients to define prognostic factors in a much more effective way than previously available. The registry allows oncology centers to tailor treatment options for each individual patient.  
Between conducting life-saving research and working with his patients, Dr. Szasz still finds time to play an active role in the alumni community and to educate and inspire the next generation. A firm believer in transparency and public education, he regularly works to educate people about medicine, pathology, and research. Seizing upon the opportunity to give back to the alumni community and to inspire youth, Dr. Szasz presented to a local high school in March 2015 as part of the “Meet the Scientist” Program, a joint initiative of the U.S. Embassy Budapest and the Hungarian Association for Innovation. Dr. Szasz considers his role as a mentor as one of the most exciting challenges in his career as a scientist, and appreciates any opportunity to educate and inspire young people about STEM. 
As a scientist with international experience through the HAESF and Fulbright programs, and with his multidisciplinary approach to work, Dr. Szasz continues to focus on international collaboration and joint projects. He believes that this kind of international cooperation provides greater perspective and more research inspiration. Dr. Szasz’s commitment to international collaboration, and his devotion to inspiring the next generation of potential scientists, could lead to life-saving breakthroughs impacting the lives of individuals around the globe.