LEXINGTON, Ky. — The University of Kentucky’s Nathan Vanderford received the 2020 Excellence in Science Education and Outreach Award from the Kentucky Academy of Science (KAS) last Friday.
Vanderford, an assistant professor in the Department of Toxicology and Cancer Biology in the UK College of Medicine and assistant director for education and research at the UK Markey Cancer Center, received the award at the KAS Annual Conference on Nov. 6. He was selected for the award due to his continuous dedication to educating the next generation of scientists through his directorship of the Appalachian Career Training in Oncology (ACTION) program and his community outreach efforts in Appalachian Kentucky.
Beginning in 2016, the National Institutes of Health-funded ACTION program provides advanced cancer education and training to high school students and UK undergraduates who are from medically, educationally, and economically underserved counties in Appalachian Kentucky.
The program includes opportunities for clinical observation, community outreach activities, and experiential learning for 16 UK undergraduates and 20 high school students each year. The outreach activities aim to enhance community members’ cancer literacy in order to change behaviors that can lower one’s cancer risk.
Vanderford was nominated for the KAS 2020 Excellence in Science Education and Outreach Award by colleagues and partners at the UK Markey Cancer Center, UK College of Medicine’s Department of Toxicology and Cancer Biology, and Eastern Kentucky University.