Aaron Mitchell, MD, demonstrated that physicians who received payments from pharmaceutical companies for meals, talks, and travel were more likely to prescribe these companies’ drugs for two types of cancer.

Kate Westmoreland, MD, spent a year in Malawi, Africa researching pediatric Burkitt lymphoma and is now pursuing a courageous goal of increasing the disease’s survival rate from 30 to 60 percent.

The 2018 Pope Clinical Fellows Awards recipients: Kate Westmoreland, MD, C. Tyler Ellis, MD, Aaron Mitchell, MD, and Kyle Wang, MD. Pictured with UNC Health Care CEO and UNC School of Medicine Dean, William L. Roper, MD, MPH (center).
The 2018 Pope Clinical Fellows Awards recipients: Kate Westmoreland, MD, C. Tyler Ellis, MD, Aaron Mitchell, MD, and Kyle Wang, MD. Pictured with UNC Health Care CEO and UNC School of Medicine Dean, William L. Roper, MD, MPH (center).

These groundbreaking developments, as well as many more will continue to flourish as a result of a new commitment from a longtime UNC Lineberger partner.

The awards, supported by the John William Pope Foundation, are given to emerging physician-scientists in-training based on their excellence in research and clinical oncology practice.

The Pope Foundation, in addition to endowing the Clinical Trainee Awards through a gift made in 2014, has made a new gift of $5 million to UNC Lineberger for the creation of the “Tomorrow’s Best Hope” Endowed Fellowship Fund. The new fund will generate nearly $250,000 each year for fellowships that are designed to help recruit, educate and train future oncologists.

“The foundation supports the challenge to give back to UNC’s ‘strategic triad’ of teaching, research and public service,” said Art Pope, Pope Foundation chairman and UNC alumnus. “When Chapel Hill and other state institutions of higher education succeed at their core missions, we all succeed. My family and I are honored to contribute to that success — to achieve the Lux et Libertas, the ‘Light and Liberty,’ that graces the University’s seal. We encourage other North Carolinian’s to do the same.”

With its new gift, the Pope Foundation will help fund the next generation of critical discoveries in oncology. The 2019 Pope Clinical Fellows will be announced in the spring.

To learn more about the impact of this gift or to support initiatives in the UNC Lineberger Comprehensive Cancer Center, please contact Martin Baucom at martin_baucom@med.unc.edu or 919.966.9874.

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