A team of 13 from the University of Illinois Cancer Center attended the second annual American Cancer Society (ACS) Diversity in Cancer Research and Training meeting in Atlanta for Cancer Health Equity Research Center (CHERC) and Diversity in Cancer Research (DICR) grantees.
The Illinois Cancer Health Equity Research (I-CHER) Center sits within the Cancer Center and is made possible with funding from ACS and support from the Cancer Center. The I-CHER Center on the University of Illinois Chicago campus was 1 of 4 four Minority Serving Institutions that shared in more than $16 million in grants awarded by the ACS, beginning in January 2022, to establish Cancer Health Equity Research (CHER) Centers. The others were the University of Arizona, Morehouse School of Medicine in Atlanta, and Howard University in Washington, D.C. Each institution received a four-year grant of $4.08 million.
Diversity in Cancer Research
The October meeting was an opportunity for the Cancer Center team to meet with other grantees, hear presentations on projects, connect on future collaborations, discuss cancer equity, and to be thought leaders in the field.
Representing the Cancer Center at the meeting were:
- Director Jan Kitajewski, PhD, Principal Investigator on the ACS grant
- Three Research Scholar Grant (RSG) awardees: Cancer Center Associate Director for Community Outreach and Engagement Yamile Molina, PhD; Cancer Center Associate Director for Translational Oncology Kent Hoskins, MD; and Cancer Center Survivorship Program Director Pam Ganschow, MD
- Two Clinician Scientist Development Grant (CSDG) awardee: Cancer Center members Keith Naylor, MD, and Patrick Smith, DMD
- Postdoctoral Fellowship Grant awardee: Chinwe Ewenighi-Amankwah, PhD, in the Kitajewski lab
- Two Pilot Grant awardees: Maria Jose Godoy Calderon, PhD, and Shaveta Khosla, PhD
- Cancer Center Associate Director for Population Sciences Marian Fitzgibbon, PhD
- Cancer Center Associate Director for Diversity, Equity and Inclusion Heather Prendergast, MD
- Cancer Center Senior Genetic Counselor Vivian Pan, MShttps://www.linkedin.com/in/vivian-pan/
- I-CHER Center Project Director Aileen Shen, MPH
RSG and CSDG awardees did an oral presentation, while Kitajewski, Ewenighi-Amankwah, Godoy-Calderon and Khosla had posters. Details on all their research projects are here.