The Cancer Prevention and Research Institute of Texas awarded a $3.9 million grant to The University of North Texas Health Science Center (HSC) in Fort Worth to expand a program that aims to create more diversity in the medical and biomedical sciences fields.
According to HSC, cancer disproportionally affects certain races and ethnicities, creating a disparity in diagnosis and outcomes. And, those same ethnicities and races are underrepresented in cancer research and oncology. The American Association of Clinical Oncology has identified a gap in the demand for oncology professionals and the workforce.
That’s why HSC has developed a plan to increase the number of underrepresented minorities in biomedical research, from K-12 to faculty career stages.
With its Scholars in Cancer Research Program, HSC plans to use the new funding to train 94 undergraduate, masters, PhD, DO/PhD dual degree, and post-doctorate scholars in the next five years. The program will also offer mentorship training, education, and workshops.
“The program offers a well-designed recruitment plan to attract underrepresented and disadvantaged scholars for research training and to stimulate interest in careers in the treatment of cancer and health disparities,” Jamboor Vishwanatha, director of the HSC Texas Center for Health Disparities, said in a statement. “Improving patient outcomes requires more diverse teams of health care professionals with complementary expertise.”
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