Jessica Thoresen Thompson
- BS Biological Sciences 2012
Dr. Jessica L. Thompson (Thoresen) ’12 is a surgical oncologist with Corewell Health West Medical Group in Grand Rapids, Michigan. As a member of the breast care team, she specializes in breast surgical oncology. In addition, Thompson serves as a clinical associate professor at Michigan State University College of Human Medicine (MSU CHM), where she teaches and does research in her field.
Thompson earned a Bachelor of Science in Biological Sciences from Michigan Tech in 2012. She cited the caliber of the biological sciences department, the diversity of extracurricular activities and location in the “breathtaking Keweenaw Peninsula” as reasons for choosing Tech.
From her time on campus, Thompson credits her pre-health academic advisors, Ronald Gratz and Stacey Cotey, for providing mentorship. “Both Dr. Gratz and Dr. Cotey were genuinely invested in educating and preparing students for professional healthcare programs. They demonstrated an extraordinary commitment to the biological sciences program at Michigan Tech, and their leadership and passion positively impacted the trajectory of my career.”
That trajectory was admission to MSU CHM through a partnership with Michigan Tech in the form of the Early Assurance Program. “Through EAP, I was able to procure acceptance into medical school in advance of the traditional timeline,” she said.
Thompson earned a Doctor of Medicine from MSU CHM in 2016. During her third and fourth years in the program, she participated in the Rural Physician Program based out of Marquette, Michigan. Thompson completed a residency in general surgery at Corewell Health (formerly Spectrum Health) in Grand Rapids in 2021. Developing an interest in the diagnosis and treatment of breast cancer, she spent a year in a fellowship at Michigan Medicine in Ann Arbor to subspecialize in breast surgical oncology.
Even through her time in school and training, Thompson has maintained a desire for volunteerism and philanthropy.
“With respect to healthcare, access is inopportunely inequitable,” she said. “Accordingly, supporting cancer-related initiatives, such as the American Cancer Society’s Making Strides Against Breast Cancer, and participation in community outreach are practicable actions I undertake in an effort to address breast cancer disparities. It is also imperative to promote the education of future generations pursuing healthcare, and as such I have truly enjoyed connecting with and counseling pre-medical students at Michigan Tech.”
Realizing the impact and magnitude of ongoing research, Thompson has had 13 articles published in peer-reviewed journals such as the Annals of Surgical Oncology and the American Journal of Surgery. Her current research interests include identifying patient populations who may benefit from de-escalation of certain breast cancer treatments without negative impacts on outcomes.
Thompson earned the Michigan Tech Outstanding Young Alumni Award in 2023. She was recognized in 2022 with the Delta Zeta Sorority 35 Under 35 Award and has garnered numerous other honors for leadership and scholarship. She currently belongs to the American Society of Breast Surgeons, Society of Surgical Oncology, American Medical Association and other organizations.
“Michigan Tech rendered a well-rounded curriculum that helped prepare me,” she said. “Outside the classroom, there were no shortage of memorable experiences: planning hall and staff socials, involvement in Husky traditions, attending hockey games, Copper Country cruising, and going on runs along the Portage Canal with my future husband, Brian (Electrical Engineering ’11).”
Updated March 2023