About Us

The Cancer Control Outreach Program (Outreach Program) is one of the cores of the Partnership for Excellence in Cancer Research between The University of Puerto Rico (UPR) and The University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center (MDACC). This program is funded by the National Institutes of Health (NIH) through the Partnership to Advance Cancer Health Equity (PACHE) program. The objective of this alliance is to reduce the burden of cancer health disparities by effectively developing community outreach programs for vulnerable populations in Texas and Puerto Rico.

Since our establishment in 2006, the Outreach Program has focused efforts in two branches: research and community outreach in the areas of tobacco prevention and control, public policies, and breast, cervical, and colorectal cancer prevention, as well as human papillomavirus (HPV) vaccination.

Our research efforts have resulted in the development of educational interventions, culturally directed to our communities. Overall, the focus of our program is to reach the community in order to educate and guide with the best evidence-based strategies for cancer prevention.

Texas Team:

Photo of Dr. Fernández, Texas Program Co-leader

Dr. María E. Fernández, PhD
Program Co-leader

Photo of Mrs. Valencia-Torres, Texas Program Coordinator

Ileska Valencia-Torres
Program Coordinator

Puerto Rico Team:

Photo of Dr. Colón-López, Puerto Rico Program Co-leader

Dr. Vivian Colón-López, PhD, MPH
Program Co-leader

Photo of Ms. Sánchez-Cabrera, Puerto Rico Program Coordinator

Yara Sánchez-Cabrera
Program Coordinator


Educational Programs

Salud por la vida program logo with main characters

Photo of “Act on Time” program logos in Spanish and English accompanied by a photo collage showcasing a mother and father with 2 kids; a boy and a girl. A picture of a young girl. And a picture of the young girl with her doctor.

Si Te Falta Te Toca Program Logos

¡Salud!, por la vida:  An educational program designed for men and women aged 50 and over that provides guidance on the prevention and early detection of colorectal cancer. Program materials includes a Tailored Interactive Multimedia Intervention, videos, checklists, and infographics. Program is currently only available in Spanish.

¡Actuemos a Tiempo!/Act on Time! is a theory-based program designed to educate parents of children aged 9 to 17 about the Human Papillomavirus (HPV), and motivate them to vaccinate their adolescent children. This program features bilingual (English/Spanish) resources that inform parents about HPV and HPV-caused cancers and address parental concerns about the HPV vaccine.

Si te falta, ¡te toca!/Didn't get it? Now you need it! is a theory-based program designed to educate young adults 18 to 26 about the Human Papillomavirus (HPV), and motivate them to get vaccinated. The program features bilingual (English/Spanish) resources that inform young adults about HPV, HPV-caused cancers and genital warts prevention. It also addresses concerns about the HPV vaccine and other common HPV-related concerns. (COMING FALL 2022)

Program Resources

Program resources such as educational materials, social media toolkits and trainings can be found on the program websites and social media pages listed below.  Click on the images below to learn more.

Program Websites

Act on time program
HPV vaccine Young adult program logo(Coming Fall 2023)


Outreach Program Social Media




Outreach Houston logo

Want to learn more about our programs, trainings, educational materials, and social media toolkits? Would like to collaborate with us or invite us to your event?

Contact our Program Coordinator, Ileska Valencia at ileska.m.valenciatorres@uth.tmc.edu for more information on our Colorectal Cancer and HPV prevention programs.

This program was developed by the Outreach Program with funding from the National Cancer Institute/National Institutes of Health under Grant [U54CA096297]; National Cancer Institute through a Community Networks Program Center under Grant [U54 CA153505]; and the National Institute on Minority Health and Health Disparities of the National Institutes of Health under Award Number [2U54MD007587].