The National Cancer Institute (NCI), is the Nation's principal agency for cancer research and is responsible for coordinating the National Cancer Program. The NCI’s primary goals are to support and conduct a broad spectrum of cancer research, with several goals: improving our understanding of the causes and biological mechanisms of a large variety of cancers; preventing cancers; detecting and diagnosing all types of cancers; and treating cancers, as well as the symptoms and complications of cancer, including the late effects of cancer and its treatment on the growing population of cancer survivors. The NCI’s mandate includes the dissemination of information about cancer and the outcomes of cancer research.

The cancer research community—under the leadership of the NCI—is poised to accelerate the rate of scientific discovery and reduce the burden of cancer in the United States and around the world. For more information, please visit www.Cancer.gov.

Interest in Diversity

NCI is committed to making sure that all Americans share equally in the medical advances that result from cancer research, and that current disparities in the burden of several diseases, including cancers, are reduced or eliminated. As part of that mission, NCI is helping to build a diverse workforce for the biomedical sciences—a critical step in reducing the burden of cancer for an increasingly diverse America. This includes providing a smoother path towards careers in science and medicine as an important means to attract and engage the nation’s most talented students, especially those from backgrounds nationally underrepresented in cancer research and care. The resulting workforce, reflecting diverse cultural and research perspectives, can best ensure that our science addresses the health needs of all Americans.

NCI is shaping research training and career development opportunities to ensure that cancer researchers in the future reflect the populations underrepresented in the nation’s biomedical workforce; have the skills and experiences to compete successfully for research resources; are valued participants in academic and institutional scientific reviews and study sections; and are fully prepared to face and embrace a new cancer landscape of challenges and opportunities.

Director's Statement
Norman E. Sharpless, M.D.
Norman E. Sharpless, M.D.
Acting Director's Statement
One of our most important jobs at NCI is to ensure a talented and innovative cancer research workforce for the decades ahead. That means cultivating a diverse workforce with regard to background, interest areas, ethnicity, and gender—in cancer health disparities research, and in cancer research in general. Our workforce should be reflective of the diversity of patients and communities we aim to serve. This is a personal priority for me, and imperative across NCI’s programs. NCI’s Center to Reduce Cancer Health Disparities (CRCHD) and Center for Cancer Training (CCT) lead our efforts to develop the next generation of cancer researchers, including investigators from underrepresented populations.