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Photo of Charles Atkin
Charles Atkin,

Our goal at Michigan State is to utilize the technology and resources we have available to us to get valuable information about breast cancer risks and prevention to the public. We need to help, women and children of all ages and backgrounds, to not only access breast cancer information, but to also understand and act on it.

Photo of Community Outreach and Tranlsation Core faculty

Purpose of Community Outreach and Translation Core

The Michigan State University Community Outreach and Translation Core (COTC) is comprised of community advocates and faculty members from the Department of Communication. The COTC is responsible for the transmittal of the information, based on the state of the science evidence, into the community at large. The major rationale behind this study is, of course, to reduce the risk of breast cancer in females, and, as such, information on prevention must be distributed to communities, with a focus on women and girls.


  • An educational and fundraising program entitled Meal Patterning for Breast Health, was organized and implemented by community advocates in coalition with other university and community sponsors.
  • We have conducted ten focus groups across four counties in Michigan to gain an understanding of adolescent and adult females’ perceptions and understanding of breast cancer and the environment (see paper abstract).
  • We have conducted a random phone survey across Michigan to further our formative research, and have conducted a content analysis to investigate news coverage of breast cancer across the country. This information helps us to develop tailored health messages to target audiences, particularly adolescent females.
  • This website explains our activities as well as provides another source for breast cancer information.

How the COTC Functions:

  • The Community Outreach and Translation Core for the Breast Cancer and the Environment Research Center will be centered in the MSU College of Communication Arts and Sciences.
  • Materials will be created by the COTC at Michigan State University and utilized as means to distribute the information, with the website as one major channel to share information.
  • Audience needs will be assessed by Communication specialists from MSU and messages will be constructed using the information gained from focus groups, content analyses, and so on.
  • Materials will be designed to increase public access to the most current and accurate information about the risks of environmental stressors and the most effective ways to reduce these risks.
  • Findings from MSU scientific research will be translated into accessible lay language.

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