Get to Know Zena Jameel, MD June Member Spotlight

Zena Jameel, MD

Assistant Member, Moffitt Cancer Center Pathology Department

Associate Director, Breast Pathology Fellowship Program

Tampa, Florida


What is your current role?
I am an assistant member of the Pathology Department at Moffitt Cancer Center in Tampa, with a sub-specialty in breast pathology. Also, I am the associate director of the Breast Pathology Fellowship Program here at Moffitt Cancer Center. In addition to signing out breast cases daily and covering frozen section service, I serve on many institutional committees and am a member of the educational committee at the FSP.

What is the best part of your occupation? 
Helping my patients in their fight against breast cancer by providing accurate diagnoses to help guide management decisions. 
I also thoroughly enjoy and take pride in teaching trainees and watching them grow to graduate as competent pathologists.

How did you become interested in pathology?
I became interested in pathology during medical school, when I first encountered the slides and microscopes. My professors at the time left a great impression on me (one of them was named Zena actually). I have become specifically interested in breast pathology when I worked as a medical assistant with a wonderful and caring breast surgeon in Fairfax Virginia, while I was preparing for my board exams.

How did you become involved with the FSP?
Upon joining the pathology department at Moffitt Cancer Center, the FSP was enthusiastically promoted, and the department encouraged all faculty to join and become members.

Explain how you benefit from being a member of FSP?
The benefits are numerous, but I will try to summarize: 
Education wise, the conferences are informative, and the speakers are renowned experts in their fields.
Networking with fellow pathologists, some from Florida some from other states.
Having a sense of belonging to a wonderful community and being a part of a bigger professional family.
Job advancement opportunities such as serving on committees.

What would you like to see occur in the field of pathology (i.e., scientific advances, greater awareness of the field, etc.) during your career?
I believe that the pathologist's role should be adequately highlighted during medical school education, and a pathology rotation should be a prerequisite for graduates and an integral part of the curriculum. I also hope to see advancements in digital pathology. I sure hope that digital pathology becomes more accessible for all practicing pathologists. 

What are your hobbies outside of the office?
I enjoy many hobbies, including attending sporting events and concerts, swimming (especially in the delightfully warm waters of the Tampa area beaches), hosting dinner parties, exercising, traveling and exploring new cultures, and listening to audiobooks.

What is something surprising that most people do not know about you?
I am fluent in Arabic. I have a Peleton exercise bike, and I love it! However, I do not know how to ride a regular road bike.
My collection of chocolate bars, cookies and other sweets occupy an entire cabinet in our kitchen.