COC Projects & Activities

The following are projects and activities sponsored and supported by the COC and its partners:

AIM 1:  Convene a Community Advisory Board to facilitate input into MVCTP activities and research, and to promote community stakeholder awareness of the MVTCP.

  • Convened MVTCP Community Advisory Board (CAB) in 2011 with more than 12 community-based organizations/agencies represented.  The CAB includes a Teen and Parent (TAP) committee added in 2013 to engage with the HPV vaccine pilot project.
  • Has maintained the United Nashville Partners Against Cancer (UN-PAC) List-serve since 2007.  More info on listserv.

AIM 2:  Support community-engaged research projects related to cancer prevention and minority participation in clinical trials.

  • The COC supports a pilot study of a social marketing intervention to increase HPV vaccine and other pre-teen vaccines among African American girls and boys, led by Hull, Sanderson and Williams (2011-2014). See the project’s website:
  • The COC provides support for an epidemiological study to develop a breast cancer risk assessment model for African American women, led by Sanderson, Zheng and Shen-Miller (2011-2014). Input has included reviewing and suggesting modifications to recruitment materials to increase overall participation, especially in DNA collection portion of study
  • In 2013 COC hosted two community-wide Community Based Participatory Research/Community Based Participatory Marketing trainings on health-related social marketing, including a training session taught by expert Dr. Carol Bryant, University of South Florida
  • The COC has developed 6 training modules on: cancer clinical trials recruitment; social marketing; benefits of medical research for communities; effective cross-cultural communication; cultural competency; and cross-cultural interactions with diverse groups.  Three (3) modules were developed in collaboration with Vanderbilt Institute for Clinical and Translational Research (VICTR)-CERC
  • A former TSU MPH student, Brea Bond, who was trained as a COC graduate assistant is now employed by Matthew Walker Comprehensive Health Center working on another NCI-funded HPV vaccine study with COC investigators.
  • In 2012-2013, the COC trained a high school student intern, Melenka Reed, through Vanderbilt School of Science and Math.
  • In 2014, the COC trained a Tennessee Cancer Coalition intern, Tarrian Joy, from Middle Tennessee State University, as part of her B.S. in Community and Public Health degree.

AIM 3: Advance a research agenda to test culturally-appropriate outreach strategies through community-engaged intervention studies.

  • The COC conducted the Hispanic Health in Nashville 2007 Survey. This needs assessment led to a pilot study of a social marketing intervention to increase HPV vaccination in Hispanic girls, led by Hull and Sanderson (2009-2011).
    See press release by AACR
    See article: Hull, P, Canedo, JR, Reece, MC, et al., (2010). Using a Participatory Research Process to Address Disproportionate Hispanic Cancer Burden.
  • The COC led the recruitment of MVTCP-supported faculty researcher, Rebecca Selove, PhD, to further enhance community-engaged, behavioral research focused on cancer at TSU and in the Partnership.
  • The COC is currently supporting the development of four grant proposals for community-engaged research on cancer-related topics with African American and/or Hispanic communities.

AIM 4: Contribute to the National Cancer Institute (NCI) Outreach Network on a coordinated agenda to identify, develop, and disseminate health promotion and cancer education information.

  • The COC participates in NCI’s National Outreach Network (
  • Provides cancer education and outreach through hosting two weekly health programs on Fisk University’s Jazzy 88 FM (WFSK) ( and La Nueva Activa WNVL (1240 AM) ( Nashville radio stations. Both stations stream globally to listening audiences of 40-70K. Between 2012-2013, 172 hours of health education information was disseminated (including cancer) through hour-long program episodes, featuring  >10 Vanderbilt and Meharry investigators