We connect trainees with cancer patients and survivors on an on-going basis through a collaboration with the Cancer Resource Center of the Finger Lakes. The objectives of this collaboration are to provide trainees with: 1) the communication skills needed to present their research in lay language, 2) an opportunity to see the human dimensions of cancer, and 3) an understanding that researcher-patient partnerships are mutually beneficial.
Training experiences include classroom instruction that emphasizes science communication, multiple opportunities to present cancer research to the local community, and involvement in patient support activities at the Cancer Resource Center.
By teaching – and learning from – cancer patients, trainees gain a unique perspective on cancer that complements their more traditional research training. Community members have the opportunity to see cancer research first-hand, gaining an appreciation of its complexities, and insight into the future of cancer prevention, diagnosis, and treatment.
The partnership began with a focus on doctoral students and post-doctoral trainees in the College of Veterinary Medicine and in the Nancy E. And Peter C. Meinig School of Biomedical Engineering, but has expanded to include students at all levels of study from throughout Cornell. Recent participants have included undergraduate and masters students from various disciplines including engineering, social sciences, the humanities, and health administration.
The website for this partnership highlights the varied activities that are available.