On Friday, March 2, the UFHCC convened our third External Advisory Board meeting. The meeting was structured to simulate a site visit for a center applying for NCI designation — with over a dozen Cancer Center leaders presenting to the EAB and fielding insightful and incisive questions.
Presentation topics included: a center overview, leadership, community outreach and engagement, research programs, shared resources, clinical trials organization and accomplishments, and research education programs.
Our EAB, which consists of 11 cancer center directors and associate directors, was impressed by the progress of the center and believe that we are on track for spring 2019 submission to the National Cancer Institute.
With a robust set of leaders, internal and external recruitment to the center, NCI and cancer-focused NIH funding of over $15 million per year, increasing translation of basic findings into clinical research, solid core facilities and exciting educational and community engagement programs in development, we are now poised to take this step.
In the meantime, there remains further work to do — including strengthening and developing new shared resources, increasing multi-investigator and program grants, increasing Cancer Center member participation in and leadership of training grants, enhancement of clinical trials accruals and streamlining the opening of clinical trials.
I’m immensely gratified by our progress over the past two and a half years. This team has pulled together beautifully. We have the structure and increasing functionality of an NCI-designated cancer center; I see our goal in sight, and believe we have a high chance of success.