Clark Atlanta University (CAU) is a premier minority serving educational institution that imparts both undergraduate and graduate programs in various disciplines including biology. Graduates from CAU are predominantly of African-American descent, therefore we firmly believe that they are in a better position to address social, educational and health disparities In the United States. African Americans are also significantly under-represented in biological research. This is partly due to lack of institutional commitment, educational facilities, early intervention programs at the undergraduate level and lack of strong graduate programs In predominantly minority regions. This proposal Is a continuation of our previous program that was largely successful and is a step forward in preparing deserving our students for a strong and committed career In prostate cancer research. We will continue to offer a disease specific program designed specifically for a minority population that is more susceptible to prostate cancer. We successfully recruited and trained more than 20 undergraduate students in prostate cancer research through the summer internship program who presented quality research at many national and international meetings. Our first group of graduate students will begin graduating this year and most have published their research in peer reviewed journals. Due to our success, we propose to continue with the same overall hypothesis and specific aims from the original application. These are: 1) Structured undergraduate cancer research training through summer internship program;2) Development of focused prostate cancer research programs to foster collaboration and maximize program outcomes;3) Development of activities that will allow students to gain competitive advantage in cancer research;4) Train graduate students for a career in prostate cancer research;and 5) Effective recruitment and retention strategy at the graduate level. Our primary objective Is therefore "To identify, recruit and impart quality research and training to minority students for a career in cancer research at the undergraduate and graduate levels".
Exposing undergraduate students to a structured cancer research program will provide learning experiences that will establish a foundation for more targeted cancer research at the graduate level. The proposal provides financial support to recruit and retain graduate students, support scientific interactions, develop collaborative projects, expose students to contemporary research and foster long-term collaborations.
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