UF – a Top 10 public university and a world leader in interdisciplinary research – is the state’s land-grant institution. UF is the state’s flagship university and one of only few U.S. institutions with an academic health center having six health-related colleges, devoted to medicine, nursing, dentistry, veterinary medicine, pharmacy, and public health and health professions, located on a single, contiguous campus. UF’s multidisciplinary centers and institutes, including the UF Health Cancer Center (UFHCC), the Proton Therapy Institute, the Genetics Institute, the Interdisciplinary Center for Biotechnology Research, the Clinical and Translational Science Institute (CTSI), the Institute on Aging, the Emerging Pathogens Institute, and the Center for Palliative Care Research and Education (CPCRE) are designed to create synergies and collaborative research opportunities that focus on the translational nature of biomedical research, following the continuum from fundamental research to clinical research to patient care. With an enrollment of nearly 50,000 students annually, UF is one of the most comprehensive and academically diverse universities in the nation and has consistently ranked among the nation’s top universities. UF has a strong commitment to the recruitment, retention, and graduation of URM students, which comprise ~ 26% of the UF student body, and it is 3rd in the nation in the number of bachelor’s degrees awarded to Black students, 11th in the number of master’s degrees awarded, and 23rd in the number of doctoral degrees. UF’s Black graduation and retention rates have consistently increased with >95% of URM medical and doctoral students graduating from their respective programs. Another strength of UF is the multiple campuses across the State with the main campus in Gainesville and additional campuses in Jacksonville, Orlando and St. Petersburg.
The UF CaRE2 Center leverages the UF Health Cancer Center (UFHCC), UF CTSI, CPCRE, the NCI P20 Florida MiCaRT Center, and the NCI R25 Comprehensive Cancer Research Training Opportunities for Outstanding Leaders (C-ReTOOL) program. The UFHCC is comprised of more than 250 researchers and clinicians at the University of Florida and UF Health, who conduct research for the prevention, early diagnosis and treatment of cancer towards the goals of the Florida-California CaRE2 Health Equity Center.
UF has a long standing partnership with FAMU, and this endeavor will continue to increase cancer health disparities research at UF as well as enhanced ability to attract URM students for graduate and post-doctoral programs. The triad partnership with USC-NCCC expands the diversity and expertise of scientists, including cutting edge expertise in “omics” and bioinformatics, genetic epidemiology of minority populations, novel experimental approaches for translational studies, and innovative and culturally-sensitive community interventions unique for the Latino population. The geographical location of USC-NCCC will expand the catchment area of research for UF, thus expanding the cancer disparities focus of UF to include Latino populations in Florida. of the country focusing on diverse sub-populations of Blacks and Latinos.