Nanotechnology has opened up a new, previously unimaginable world in cancer diagnosis and therapy, leading to an emerging paradigm, Cancer Nanomedicine. Northeastern University (NEU) and Dana Farber / Harvard Cancer Center (DF/HCC) propose to establish the CaNCURE program to train the next generation of scientists, technologists and physicians skilled in research at the interface of nanotechnology, biology and medicine. The CaNCURE program will address the need to translate the rapid and ongoing developments in cancer nanomedicine to academic programs that will attract and retain young scientists and engineers, particularly from underrepresented minority (URM) groups, and will encourage them to pursue higher education and careers in cancer research. The CaNCURE program will support academic year B.S. traineeships (105 over 5 years) along the lines of the cooperative education model pioneered by Northeastern University. The program will achieve its goals through the following specific aims:
Specific Aim 1 : Provide a hands-on research experience with a focus on cancer nanomedicine through an academic year co-op internship mentored by world-class cancer researchers and clinicians at NEU and DF/HCC. The internship will develop the trainee's research skills, expand critical thinking abilities, develop team-participation and collaboration skills, and facilitate the trainee's ability to do independent research safely and responsibly.
Specific Aim 2 : Develop a set of activities for year- round education, including a bi-monthly seminar, a journal club, and conference travel opportunities that will increase participants'knowledge of cancer nanomedicine.
Specific Aim 3 : Develop students'knowledge of health and biomedical research careers and the preparation needed to attain them, thus creating a pipeline of students interested in cancer and cancer nanomedicine careers.
Specific Aim 4 : Increase the diversity of the cancer research workforce by targeted recruitment and retention programs. We anticipate that the majority of CaNCURE trainees will be members of groups which are underrepresented in the biomedical sciences. Their cultural competence will enhance their ability to contribute to the reduction of health care disparities. Northeastern University is a recognized leader in cooperative experiential education. NEU's unique co- op model, which has been developed over the last 100 years, integrates 2 or 3 six-month practical experiences in a research or workplace environment. The partnership between Northeastern University and the Dana Farber / Harvard Cancer Center, which is comprised of 7 research hospitals in the Harvard Medical School system, brings together more than 1000 cancer researchers. 35 outstanding researchers have committed to mentor and train CaNCURE trainees. We will capitalize on this access to develop interdisciplinary cancer scientists, technologists and physicians for the 21st Century cancer workforce.
Cancer Nanomedicine Co-ops for Undergraduate Research Experiences Northeastern University and Dana Farber / Harvard Cancer Center propose to establish the CaNCURE: Cancer Nanomedicine Co-ops for Undergraduate Research Experiences program to train the next generation of scientists, technologists and physicians skilled in cancer nanomedicine. The CaNCURE program will address the need to translate the rapid and ongoing developments in cancer nanomedicine to academic programs that will attract and retain young scientists and engineers, particularly from underrepresented minority (URM) groups, and will encourage them to pursue higher education and careers in cancer research and clinical practice.