Nathaniel (Nate) Van Asselt
Assistant Professor in Radiation Oncology
Downers Grove, Illinois
School / professional background:
Undergraduate university degree at Tulane University in New Orleans, Louisiana; DVM at the School of Veterinary Medicine at St. George’s University in Grenada; small animal rotation internship at VCA Aurora in Aurora, Illinois; Residency in Radiation Oncology at the University of Wisconsin School of Veterinary Medicine
What is your area of research and how did you get into it?
Monitoring of tumor movement during radiotherapy treatments. I got into this area because we were lucky enough to get a tumor tracking platform called Synchrony on our new radiotherapy machine.
What attracted you to UW-Madison?
First, the people. Virtually everyone I have met at UW-Madison has been friendly and eager to work together towards a similar goal of improving the quality of veterinary care that we are able to provide.
How was your first visit to campus?
Fortunately, I have had many “first visits” to campus, as I have done so much of my training there. I am happy to say each time I have been greeted with a friendly face.
Favorite place on campus?
Without doubt the Terrace.
It is a unique moment, as we are returning after more than a year of the pandemic. What are you waiting for the most?
I continue to feel increasingly safe at work because I know my colleagues have similar values when it comes to safety.
Do you think your work relates in any way to the idea of Wisconsin? If so, please describe how.
While my research doesn’t easily apply to the idea of Wisconsin, I think my goal as an educator is to provide our students with not only the knowledge they need to be successful, but also the tools to navigate. in the sometimes mentally difficult field of veterinary medicine today.
What is there of interesting in your area of expertise that you can share that will make us smarter at the holidays, now that we can attend it again?
X-rays and gamma rays, both used in veterinary radiation oncology, are defined by their origin. X-rays are man-made while gamma rays are produced by radioactive isotopes. Both can produce high and low energy electromagnetic waves.
Hobbies / other interests:
First my family. I have a wife and a two year old son as well as two dogs. I’m happiest when we’re at the zoo and my two year old walks past the cool animals to catch the train. Next come music, outdoor activities such as hiking and camping, movies and TV shows, and finally video games.