Seven Denver College of Nursing students volunteer 25 hours for breast cancer outreach

Wednesday, June 17, 2015 8:23 PM

Seven Denver College of Nursing (DCN) students teamed up with Boarding for Breast Cancer ( in Vail, CO to provide breast cancer educational outreach to outdoor sports enthusiasts at the Burton U.S. Open Snowboarding Championships.

“This is our fourth collaboration with Boarding for Breast Cancer,” said Dr. Marcia Bankirer, president of DCN ( “DCN students have been partnering for the past two years with Boarding for Breast Cancer, which hosts grassroots events with local mountain resorts, using outdoor sports events as a platform to promote healthy, active living. In addition to educating thousands of people about how to live a healthy, active life, DCN students encouraged women to be their own health and wellness advocates.”
Participants received coaching on methods of early detection and had an opportunity to identify and learn the difference between lumps, cysts, and carcinomas by feeling life-like artificial breast molds. DCN students helped visitors learn cancer facts and engaged visitors in conversations about breast cancer prevention and best health practices for daily life.

The DCN students who devoted 25 hours in the three-day-long educational outreach event also will serve in upcoming international healthcare internships through DCN’s Global Health Perspectives (GHP) program. The DCN students who worked with Boarding for Breast Cancer in Vail included: Jenny Giberson, Shannon Krajewski, Hailey Ledbetter, Hannah Plath, Caitlin Scherr, Nicole Schumacher and Ellis Whalen.

Founded in 1996, Boarding for Breast Cancer is a non-profit foundation dedicated to providing education, prevention and support programs for young people and the action sports community at large.

“Breast cancer education, early detection and new treatments have extended women’s’ lives by years,” noted Micah Hughes, DCN assistant professor and director of the nursing college’s GHP program. “We are honored to work with Boarding for Breast Cancer. I am proud of the outstanding education and service learning outreach that DCN nursing students conducted in Vail.”

According to the American Cancer Society (, the overall five-year relative survivor rate for female breast cancer patients has improved from 75 percent from 1975 to 1977 to 90 percent for 2003 through 2009. This increase is due largely through improvements in treatment to earlier diagnosis resulting from the widespread use of mammography.