Community Sciences and Health Outcomes Core


The Community Sciences and Health Outcomes (CSHO) Core is a centralized point of access that facilitates personalized and culturally sensitive cancer research at the population-, community-, and clinic-level in central Pennsylvania.  The Core provides services that add value to the research of the Penn State Hershey Cancer Institute by allowing Cancer Institute investigators to focus upon the science of their study rather than technical and developmental activities such as preparing data for background sections of grant applications, managing participant data and sample collection, and building community trust.  The Core collaborates with investigators to develop research proposals for extramural funding in cancer etiology, prevention, early detection, treatment, and survivorship.  The Core has assisted with previous grants and manuscripts.  The Core participates in descriptive, analytic and interventional studies.  While the Core can assist investigators at any stage of a study, investigators are encouraged to contact the Core while in the planning stages of a study so that Core expertise and resources can be strategically incorporated into study design, protocol development, and method selection.  Though the Core operates through three primary centers, Core faculty and staff interact extensively with one another.

Data and Informatics Center

  • Maintains and analyzes data from surveys, registries, and claims
  • Links health records across data systems
  • Develops data collection systems and forms
  • Quantifies the economics of cancer prevention and treatment

Research Participant Center

  • Trains and supervises interviewers of participants in non-therapeutic studies
  • Develops systems for biomarker and sample collection
  • Identifies and recommends instruments, such as quality of life, for collection of participant data
  • Abstracts medical charts

Health Disparities and Community Engagement Center

  • Supports the Harrisburg Community Cancer Network and the Northern Appalachia Cancer Network
  • Assures cultural sensitivity and appropriate reading level for study materials and methods
  • Conducts focus groups and collects other qualitative data
  • Enhances recruitment and retention of minority and underserved participants to non-therapeutic studies
  • Disseminates the results of studies and evidence-based practice
  • Directs the Community Health Worker Program

In addition to supporting cancer research, the CSHO Core also:

  • Directs Cancer Institute community outreach and education, which includes numerous educational programs throughout central Pennsylvania
  • Maintains a Cancer Institute resource directory, services directory, and community cancer directory
  • Develops and provides materials that help investigators develop culturally sensitive materials and methods

To facilitate communication with Cancer Institute investigators, the Core holds working seminars in the Cancer Institute at 10:30 am on the second Tuesday of every month. 

Leadership and Location

The CSHO Core is directed by Eugene J. Lengerich, VMD, MS, Professor of Public Health Sciences, with expertise in cancer epidemiology and community-based research.  In addition to Dr. Lengerich, other CSHO Core members include:  Fabian Camacho, MS, MA, (data analyst) and Patricia Robinson (lead community health worker).  The CSHO Core has offices on the third floor of the Cancer Institute Building and the second floor of the Academic Support Building on the Milton S. Hershey Campus.  In addition, the CSHO Core has an extensive network of community and health care partners in central Pennsylvania.  These partners allow the Core, and the research that it assists, to effectively reach diverse populations in diverse settings.


Investigators can request the assistance of the CSHO Core by completing a Service Request Form.  If you have any questions or would like more information about the CSHO Core you can contact Dr. Lengerich at 717-531-7178 or

Click to view the CSHO Links page