The Global TEACH Project

United State of America

Training, Education, and Awareness of Cancer Healthcare

Connecting the U.S. Appalachian region and Nigeria

Apply here!

Applications are due April 29th

Launched in September 2023, this student-led initiative places students within international research, crafting real-world solutions to increase awareness of breast and cervical cancer and improve health outcomes in the U.S. and Nigeria. In collaboration, students and faculty members will develop global health curriculum to enhance existing global health courses at Pitt (main campus), Pitt (Johnstown), and Babcock University (Nigeria). Students will propose workable solutions for effective cancer awareness, screening, early diagnosis, and prevention for people in U.S. Appalachian communities and in under-served communities in Lagos, Nigeria. Students will gain knowledge about social determinants of health, health inequities, geographical, and global disparities in rural U.S. and in low-resource communities in Lagos, Nigeria. This project is made possible through a global partnership of academic institutions, working with Lakeshore Cancer Center and Babcock University in Nigeria.


Academics and Expectations

Students involved in this project will be enrolled in a 3-credit independent study for two semesters (6 credits total) and will attend one hour of weekly meetings with faculty members to discuss progress and strategies.

Complete two hours per week of teamwork, where students will develop initiatives with real-world impact.

Collaborate with students across disciplines and cultures in the U.S. and Nigeria.


Who can Apply

This course is available for students in their sophomore or junior year. Students with a vision for a healthier world are invited to apply for the Fall 2024 cohort. We're looking for students who are ready to challenge themselves and make a difference.



Student engagement spans critical activities such as data collection, research, and analysis. Students will facilitate focus groups, create engaging webinars, lead workshops, and develop curriculum. The program culminates in a conference showcasing developed solutions to public health challenges.


Context of Cancer Disparities

Despite the global decrease in cancer mortality rates, the Appalachian region and Nigeria continue to see higher death rates, especially among rural populations. The Global Cancer Observatory's alarming projection that cancer deaths in Africa south of the Sahara could double by 2030 underscores the urgency of the situation. Similarly, the U.S. Appalachian region has a 10% higher cancer mortality rate compared to the rest of the United States.

Many of these disparities are due to the lack of access to early screening and limited healthcare resources available in these regions of the world. By engaging in research that addresses both regions, universal solutions to decreasing cancer mortality can be developed. These solutions will address a broader range of social determinants of health, including economic status, educational attainment, and access to specialized healthcare services.

It is within this landscape that the Global TEACH Project plants its seeds of hope, nurtured by the vision of Dr. Abimbola Fapohunda, whose personal loss echoes the collective grief of countless families. Her mother, a health worker who nurtured life, faced her final days with courage but without the shield of early cancer detection.


About Dr. Abimbola Fapohunda

Dr. Fapohunda is a trained epidemiologist and health educator with over seventeen years’ experience of running her consulting company and working in public health, conducting needs assessments and program evaluation on the effectiveness of numerous community-based initiatives related to health disparities in both behavioral and physical health, including nutrition, smoking cessation, HIV/AIDS and oral health. She currently serves as one of the 2023/2024 Global Academic Partnership (GAP) Fellows. Funding provided by the University of Pittsburgh's Global Academic Partnership Grant (Global Studies Center and Office of the Provost).

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Academic Department: 
Public Health
Behavioral and Community Health Sciences
Africana Studies
Contact Name: 
Dr. Abi Fapohunda
Contact Email: 

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