Emerson College Participating in National Cancer Study

Emerson is one of four stops for a national study looking at how cancer affects patients' families.

Emerson College has received a lot of press recently, for its students’ artistic talents, marketing campaigns, and its LGBT friendly environment, and now the college is at the forefront of national scientific research. On Saturday, November 16th and Sunday, November 17th, Emerson will be one of four stops nationwide of the “Managing the Cancer Journey” study which is examining how cancer patients and their loved ones communicate about the diagnoses.

The study is part of a $1.6 million fund granted to San Diego State University and Klein Buendel Inc.—a health communications research organization—by the National Cancer Institute. Participants are asked to watch one of two 80 minute DVDs that discusses a range of cancer-related topics, like nutrition and end-of-life issues, and then will be asked fill out brief questionnaires. There will also be a talkback session after the screening to discuss the DVDs. Around mid-December, participants will be contacted again and asked to fill out another questionnaire.

The DVDs examine the issues between families affected by cancer that have been proven to be difficult to talk about. The researchers hope that the results of the questionnaires will provide information that can be compiled into educational materials to be distributed to future diagnosed patients. In theory, this information and materials will work to ease those future patients’ difficult journeys.

Dr. Phillip Glenn, the Interim Dean of the School of Communication at Emerson College, said in a press release:

“This is a compelling research study that promises advances in understanding the roles that communication and social support play in helping individuals throughout their journey with cancer.”

The study was launched in mid-August in San Diego and involves collaborative research efforts from experts at the University of Nebraska, the University of Utah, and Emerson College in addition to the San Diego State University research team. Emerson is looking for participants who are 18 or older, have been diagnosed with cancer, survived cancer, or had a family member diagnosed with cancer to volunteer. Register online here. The sessions will be held at 1:30 p.m. on both days in the Bright Family Screening Room at the Emerson Paramount Center, located at 559 Washington Street.