CBAM is a frequent participant in the NIDA Summer research program that places underrepresented, undergraduate students with NIDA-funded researchers to promote diversity in the field of research. In the Summer of 2010, Annette Grotheer spent 10 weeks with CBAM, gaining knowledge and experience on clinical trials, HIV prevention work, community outreach, and scientific writing.
Annie noted that her internship with CBAM helped her to narrow down her career choices and increase expectations for her future. After her internship, she completed her undergraduate degree, graduating with honors. She then moved on to graduate studies at the Tufts School of Medicine. Working closely with a mentor at Tufts, Annie designed a novel project and will be in Kenya for 6 months tracking cases of cervical cancer, interviewing women and health care workers and, hopefully, implementing a training program to increase the quality of care for cervical cancer, which is the second leading cause of cancer deaths among women worldwide.
The study seeks to provide more accurate estimates of cervical cancer and to describe the attitudes, knowledge, beliefs, and practices of women and health care workers to understand barriers to effective utilization of screening resources in the region. Because resources are limited, finding a way to increase the use of currently available services is an important and cost effective step with the potential to prevent thousands of unnecessary deaths. This study represents a critical first step to reducing mortality due to undiagnosed cervical cancer.
CBAM is proud to have been involved in Annie’s career development. We look forward to hearing the results of her work in Kenya and her continued development as a researcher.