The overall objective of the Central Plains Center for American Indian Health Disparities (CPC-AIHD) Research Training and Education Core is to assist American Indians (Al) in entering the health professions by developing a career-pathways pipeline program for Al students at all levels of education. The Research Training and Education Core will establish a pipeline for education and training in health disparities CBPR for Al students and researchers and others who would like to work with Al communities. We will coordinate a wide array of educational programs targeting students at all educational levels, from high school to undergraduate students, to graduate students, to doctoral students and fellows. Particular emphasis will be placed on recruiting Al scholars at early stages of career development, including high school and undergraduate students. For these early career trainees, we will work collaboratively with local and tribal institutions to recruit talented students and instill in them a passion for research and a commitment to service for underserved communities. To have a more immediate impact on developing new researchers, however, we will also offer training for graduate and postgraduate trainees. For these trainees, we will extend our recruitment network to regional graduate training programs and Minority Access to Research Career (MARC) programs around the country. The Research Training and Education Core will also examine and supplement the existing curricula in our graduate training programs to assure that we have appropriate course work to support training in health disparities and CBPR. We will develop an education and training program that will encourage young Al students to enter the health professions that will address some of the most pressing problems associated with health disparities in this population.
Efforts to improve American Indian health disparities are hampered by the paucity of researchers engaged in both health disparities and cancer-related research. The Research Training and Education Core will provide mentored interdisciplinary research experiences to American Indian trainees at all stages of career development.
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