CARY – The V Foundation for Cancer Research recently announced a new multi-million dollar grant program focused on supporting female researchers. The well-known cancer research charity named for former NC State basketball coach Jim Valvano is hoping to improve female representation and increase female-led innovations in cancer research.

According to a 2019 Journal of the American Medical Association (JAMA) article, women at some institutions receive up to 38 percent less funding. They also receive fewer NIH Grant awards throughout all phases of their careers.

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And a 2020 article indicated that COVID-19 disproportionately impacted female scientists, especially those with young children, by restricting their available time for research.

Named A Grant of Her Own: The Women Scientists Innovation Award for Cancer Research, the new V Foundation program is intended to help counter these trends.

Negative Impacts of Fewer Female Scientists

Harvard Business School professor Rembrand Koning said in a 2020 article that a lack of female-driven inventions could directly and negatively impact health outcomes.

“You have all these women who have great ideas, but aren’t being included in the process of commercialization,” said Koning in the article. “Longer-term, we need to shift the composition of who gets to invent and who gets to become a scientist.”

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What is the V Scholar Award

The “V Scholar Award” will target early-career researchers with $600,000 in funding over three years. The “Transitional Research Award” will provide $800,000 over four years for those working toward clinical trials.

Candidate applications for the A Grant of Her Own: The Women Scientists Innovation Award for Cancer Research awards are being accepted by the foundation through March 16. Learn more on the V Foundation website.

V Foundation Celebrates 30 Years

The V Foundation is currently celebrating its 30th anniversary since originating with Jim Valvano’s famous ESPYs speech delivered March 4, 1993. The organization has plans for initiatives and events throughout the coming year continuing its focus on advancing cancer research and saving lives while memorializing Jim Valvano’s legacy.

“This year, we will recognize the 30th anniversary of the V Foundation, the undeniable impact of research on cancer outcomes in the last thirty years, and our vision of Victory Over Cancer®,” said V Foundation CEO Shane Jacobson in the press release. “Today’s cancer research is tomorrow’s victory.”