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The Daily Wildcat

The Daily Wildcat


    Breast cancer tour raising awareness

    Nick Blake, team member with Komen on the Go, an organization that aims to raise awareness about breast cancer, aids Rae Murillo,a pre-business sophomore, at a computer inside of the mobile education vehicle near Fourth Street and Highland Avenue yesterday.
    Nick Blake, team member with Komen on the Go, an organization that aims to raise awareness about breast cancer, aids Rae Murillo,a pre-business sophomore, at a computer inside of the ‘mobile education vehicle’ near Fourth Street and Highland Avenue yesterday.

    Forty thousand women will die from breast cancer this year, and one in eight women will be diagnosed with breast cancer in her lifetime.

    These statistics highlight the importance of the work being done at the Susan G. Komen Foundation, which supports Komen on the Go, a 144-stop interactive tour that arrived on campus yesterday.

    Komen on the Go is traveling in a pink trailer filled with national interactive displays to raise awareness of and provide information about breast cancer.

    The trailer is situated near the intersection of Fourth Street and Highland Avenue.

    “”This is really important information to get out there,”” said Carly Thomsen, director of the UA Women’s Resource Center, which co-sponsored the tour stop with the Student Health Advisory Committee.

    Events like this are important, because they bring out crucial information out in an empowering way, she said.

    The trailer

    It shows you how to do the different self-checks.

    -Kimberly Shipp,
    co-director, Student Health Advisory Committee

    featured more than a dozen laptop computers displaying information about the disease, as well as ways to become involved in breast cancer awareness in the community.

    There was also a tutorial video on how to self-check for breast cancer.

    “”It shows you how to do the different self-checks,”” said Kimberly Shipp, a co-director of the Student Health Advisory Committee. “”It has all the stuff involved to go through and do it: what sorts of things you need to look out for to find the breast cancer.””

    Women should self-check themselves every month once they turn 20, and at 40, women should begin getting mammograms, Shipp said.

    The Susan G. Komen Foundation, based in Dallas, has been working to bring information about breast cancer to the public for 25 years.

    “”We are raising awareness about breast cancer,”” said Mindy Marburger, a Komen on the Go team member. “”(College students comprise) a good age group because early detection is the key. Also, we find that most people this age are co-survivors.””

    She has found that many students have mothers or grandmothers who have breast cancer.

    “”They have some connection to the cause,”” Marburger said.

    Komen on the Go started four years ago as a 10-stop tour, said team member Nick Blake.

    “”There are obviously so many schools and so many people to be able to reach out to,”” he said. “”You couldn’t get big enough. There’s always demand and need for education and that outreach.””

    Blake said he hopes everyone who stops by the trailer becomes “”empowered to take their own breast health into their own hands.””

    Since the Komen Foundation began, there have been great strides in diagnosing and treating breast cancer, he said.

    “”Twenty-five years ago, there was a 73 percent survival rate for women that were diagnosed and treated,”” Blake said. “”But now, as long as you’re diagnosed early and treated, there’s a 98 percent survival rate.””

    Jawan Little, an economics freshman, visited the trailer because of his family’s history with breast cancer.

    “”My mother had an incident,”” he said. “”Breast cancer kind of runs in our family. But she spotted it early. She spotted it, and they removed it.””

    Kathleen Collins, a nutrition freshman, went to the event to become more aware of breast cancer.

    “”Every woman should be concerned about it,”” she said. “”It’s good to know more information.””

    She said that the video demonstration of the breast cancer self-check was especially helpful.

    “”I learned at my doctor, but I’d never seen it done,”” she said.

    There’s no known cause for breast cancer, Blake said, although chances of its occurring increases for women as they get older, and if other members in their family have it.

    About 1,690 men will also be diagnosed with breast cancer this year, Blake said, adding that of those, approximately 460 will die.

    Because age is such a big factor, regular self-exams are critical in early detection of the disease, Blake said.

    “”We’re just trying to educate as many people as we can,”” Marburger said. “”Students are a great way to reach out and connect.””

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