This is a renewal application for years 5-10 of an experiential research training program in cancer nanomedicine for undergraduate students in STEM fields. Known as CaNCURE: Cancer Nanomedicine Co-ops for Undergraduate Research Experiences, this program was created to encourage young scientists & engineers, particularly those from underrepresented minorities, to pursue careers in cancer research. To achieve this objective, the following specific aims are proposed: 1. Provide a hands-on research experience with a focus in cancer nanomedicine through a 6-month co-op internship mentored by world-class cancer researchers at Dana- Farber / Harvard Cancer Center. 2. Provide year-round activities for co-op enrichment, including weekly seminars, instrumentation training, a reflective e-portfolio, and conference travel. 3. Provide professional preparation for a career in cancer research, including professional skills training, opportunities to network and present research, and resources to enhance career preparation. 4. Increase the diversity of the cancer research workforce by targeted recruitment and retention of students from underrepresented minorities and disadvantaged backgrounds. This renewal will support 80 undergraduate traineeships (16 per year) to be paid over 15 weeks of the 6-month research experience. New features of this proposal include: an online library of research techniques briefs for on-demand instrumentation training, research e-portfolios that allow trainee reflection within the framework of their individual development plan, new educational programming in cancer disparities and inequities, and mentoring of trainees by CaNCURE alumni. The CaNCURE program will continue to leverage Northeastern University?s model of co-operative education and Dana-Farber / Harvard Cancer Center?s vast network of cancer research laboratories to create an immersive training environment for cancer research. Our evaluation shows that CaNCURE consistently provides trainees with knowledge and skills unavailable through more conventional co-ops, as well as increases trainee interest in and their likelihood of pursuing a career in cancer research. The successful implementation of this program will continue to create a pipeline of young scientists & engineers, particularly those from underrepresented minorities, with the interest, skills, and knowledge necessary to pursue interdisciplinary cancer research.

Public Health Relevance

CaNCURE: Cancer Nanomedicine Co-ops for Undergraduate Research Experiences This renewal of the CaNCURE: Cancer Nanomedicine Co-ops for Undergraduate Research Experiences Program seeks to provide training and education in research at the interface of nanotechnology, cancer biology, and medicine in order to attract, retain, and encourage young scientists & engineers, particularly those from underrepresented minorities, to pursue careers in cancer research. The program will achieve this central aim by creating meaningful and rigorous research experiences mentored by outstanding academic and clinical researchers and supplemented with various other learning and professional development opportunities. The program combines Northeastern University?s co-op model of education with outstanding cancer nanomedicine research infrastructure at Dana-Farber / Harvard Cancer Center to create an immersive training environment for knowledge and skills acquisition.

National Institute of Health (NIH)
National Cancer Institute (NCI)
Education Projects (R25)
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Subcommittee I - Transistion to Independence (NCI)
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Radaev, Sergey
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Northeastern University
Schools of Arts and Sciences
United States
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