Robert A. Somer, MD


Cooper University Health Care Titles

  • Head, Division of Hematology/Medical Oncology
  • Director, Cancer Clinical Trials Program
  • Hematologist/Medical Oncologist

Cooper Medical School of Rowan University Titles

  • Professor of Medicine

Board Certifications

  • Internal Medicine
  • American Board of Internal Medicine (Medical Oncology)
  • Hematology

Professional Type

Cooper University Physician



About Me

What inspired you to become a cancer specialist?
As a child, I always had an interest in science, figuring out how things worked, enjoyed talking to people, was outgoing and developed an interest in the human connection. Naturally, medicine seemed like it was the perfect meld of science, research, and relationships. My decision to go into oncology came very late in the course of my training during my internal medicine residency at Penn. In fact, I had fellowship applications filled out for gastroenterology! I did an outpatient elective in oncology and threw out the GI fellowship apps, and quickly applied to hem/onc programs! The overwhelming possibility of improving someone's life, whether it be through cure, delay of progressive symptoms, providing palliative care, emotionally supporting patients and their families, managing the most difficult medical issues, and furthering the field through research, is the most rewarding experience in the world. Adding to this fact is that I get to work with the most amazing people who share the similar goal of helping others. In fact, I cannot picture myself doing anything else.

What is your essential patient care philosophy?
Treat patients as you would want a family member treated. My poor mother, father, brother, sister, and wife (depending on the patient's age and gender) have been used as examples thousands of times. Please don't tell them!

What do you hope your patients say about you to their family and friends?
He's such a great listener and truly cares about me!

What three words best describe you?
Intellectual, hilarious (and I mean extremely funny), and sensitive/caring (Okay, that's 4 - honest. That makes 5).

Education & Training

Medical SchoolSUNY Stony Brook School of Medicine, Stony Brook, NY
InternshipHospital of the University of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia, PA
ResidencyInternal Medicine - Hospital of the University of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia, PA
FellowshipHematology/Oncology - Fox Chase Cancer Center, Philadelphia, PA

Special Interests

Breast cancer, genitourinary cancers, cancer clinical trials, cancer and genetics

Awards and Honors

  • South Jersey Magazine "Best Doctors" - 2015, 2018
  • South Jersey Magazine "Best Physicians for Women" - 2014
  • Inside Jersey Magazine "Top Docs" - 2015, 2016, 2018
  • Inside Jersey Magazine "Top Docs for Cancer Care" - 2015
  • Philadelphia Magazine "Top Docs" - 2019, 2021
  • SJ Magazine "Top Docs Patient Poll" - 2019, 2020

Editorial Positions

Medpress, Editorial Board