The goal of this proposal is to provide support for mentoring fellows that are pursing research careers in behavioral oncology. As part of their training process, they will be involved in my ongoing research. Although I have salary support for my funded research, I do not have dedicated release time for mentoring. I have almost 30 years of peer reviewed funding experience. However, I strongly believe that at this time in my career, my mentoring activities should be proportional to my research work and allow me to involve all mentees in my ongoing research and scholarship. My current research focus is secondary prevention of cancer as well as continuing research scholarship in survivorship. Cancer morbidity and mortality could be greatly reduced by increasing cancer prevention and screening behaviors. Additionally, for those diagnosed with cancer, symptoms caused by the disease and treatment last a lifetime requiring research to identify and intervene so that our cancer survivors and their families can deal with symptoms and enjoy better quality of life. We need both research from mid-level and senior faculty with inclusion of new mentees into ongoing research to facilitate building knowledge and translating this knowledge into practice. Although the last two decades have shown tremendous improvement in finding both breast and colon cancer early, much work remains. My current research tests a tailored interactive intervention to increase breast and colon cancer in women non-adherent to these screenings. Future research will build on the current research by adding cervical cancer screening to breast and colorectal screening. Today's health care providers are challenged to encourage preventive care and early detection behaviors at the same time they are treating acute and chronic illnesses. Although preventive care must be linked to the individual's health care profile, Interventions to increase screening can be handled without taking additional time during clinical visits that are usually directed toward medical issues. The purpose of this application is to obtai dedicated support for mentoring new behavioral oncology investigators including pre and post-doctoral and junior faculty by integrating them into my research program that is embedded within the rich resources available at Indiana University. Mentees will be able to acquire knowledge about behavioral oncology research trials by participating in my funded research. They will also be involved as I continue to develop new proposals to further my research program. In summary, I am at the perfect time in my career to take advantage of this opportunity for increasing the involvement of mentees into active and ongoing programs of research.
Our greatest weapon against cancer morbidity and mortality is to address individual cancer prevention and early detection behaviors such as breast and colorectal cancer screening. This proposal seeks to advance the research to increase relevant cancer screening behaviors and to use the research program as a mechanism to train our next generation of behavioral oncology researchers.