It is an honor and privilege to serve the AAISCR as President. It reminds me of the spring of 1994 when we founded this organization with the idea of bringing together American Indian cancer research scientists to promote communication and to work together on understanding cancer at various levels, and help each other in the process of finding our place among cancer researchers in this nation. Following 23 years of services to the community of cancer researchers of Indian origin, AAISCR continues to support the community with integrity, loyalty and generosity. AAISCR best serves the community by connecting scientists of similar interest to help them pursue common goals. We have seen collaborations over the years among AAISCR members, and many postdoctoral fellows and students found mentors who helped them pursue their dreams.
The focus of cancer research has changed since 1994. An explosion of knowledge, technological advancements powered by advancement in bioinformatics/computer sciences and availability of high impact technology platforms changed the landscape of cancer research forever. We have been experiencing an unprecedented explosion of discoveries that helped achieve enormous advancement in almost every area of cancer research. It may be beneficial to work in collaboration with other investigators to bring technologies and skill sets needed to achieve specific scientific goals. In this regards, AAISCR provides a platform to get connected with researchers from a variety of backgrounds in cancer research. In addition, AAISCR presents an opportunity to discuss grant-related questions and NIH funding initiatives with HIH Program Directors attending the AAISCR Annual Meetings as panel members of the NIH grant-related discussion forum.
We understand that researchers/students coming from India with diverse backgrounds encounter challenges at various levels including coping with new environment in addition to acquiring knowledge and learning new skills and technologies in a fast-paced environment. It is apparent that one has to identify viable research ideas and write nearly perfect grant applications to pursue independent research in academia or join industrial workforce. To address these challenges, AAISCR has developed “mentoring program for junior faculty” for researchers coming from India and within this nation (www.aaiscr.org). Interested junior faculties may contact me (firstname.lastname@example.org) or the Chair person listed in the mentoring program to take advantage of this program. We want junior investigators know that there are many experienced and established investigators available and willing to offer guidance at different levels.
In an effort to appreciate research excellence and encourage new and established investigators, AAISCR Award Committees have been recognizing achievements of American Indian Scientists or otherwise through various awards. These awards are testament of scientific excellence that helps promote career development, and marks distinction in their scientific career. AAISCR appreciates high quality reproducible research that may become meaningful overtime to the cancer research community. A list of previous awardees is posted to our website for your information.
Many thanks for being part of the AAISCR community and for sharing responsibilities to collectively moving our scientific goals forward. Please let us work together to achieving our goals while developing new and better technologies, diagnostics and therapeutics to advance cancer research and patient care; it is an endeavor worth pursuing.
Aniruddha Ganguly, Ph.D.