MD Anderson Cancer Center UTHealth
Graduate School of Biomedical Sciences

1992: The first two Andrew Sowell-Wade Huggins Scholarships were awarded to students working in cancer research.

1993: The Christmas Letters start as an annual gift campaign.

1996: The first Cancer Answers gala fundraising event, Fiesta Grande, was held.

1997: Cancer Answers received IRS 501(c)(3) charitable organization status, which enabled it to receive tax-deductible gifts and fundraising.

1998: The Texas Water Safari event raised support for the endowment.  As a result of annual fundraising events, generous Foundation grants, and personal letter-writing campaigns, the endowment grew substantially, increasing the number of scholarships.

1999: Sylvan Rodriguez Charity chose Cancer Answers to be one of the beneficiaries of the Sylvan Rodriguez Golf Tournament and Gala.

2000: The first Cancer Answers/Sylvan Rodriguez Scholarship was awarded.

2001: The original website came to life.

2002: The Andrew Sowell-Wade Huggins Professorship/Graduate Fellowship Award was established.

2004: The Inaugural Valentine's Art Program celebrated cancer survivors.

2005: Unique art emblem was installed at MD Anderson UTHealth Graduate School to honor all those challenged with cancer. Size of the endowment grew to increase the amount of each scholarship to $2,500 to cover the yearly expense of tuition for five scholars.

2006: At this point, 36 students had received the prestigious honor of the Andrew Sowell-Wade Huggins Endowed Scholarship; seven students were named Cancer Answers/Sylvan Rodriguez Scholars, and three professor/student teams received full stipend support ($20,000-$23,000 yearly) through the Andrew Sowell-Wade Huggins Professorship/Fellowship joint award. The website was revitalized as

2007: A letter sent to friends and family requesting contributions brought more than 100 generous gifts, which helped to make possible an annual donation to the endowment of $100,000. Scholarships increased in value to provide $3,000 for each honoree.

2008: At this point under the Cancer Answers umbrella, more than 50 graduate students had received tuition or full stipend support.

2009: Through the growth of the Endowment, two of the Andrew Sowell-Wade Huggins Professorship/Fellowship teams were named. Scholarships increased to $5,000.

2010: 70 graduate students had received scholarships or full stipend support under Cancer Answers.

2011: The organization celebrated their 20th anniversary of funding and supporting those who will be finding Cancer Answers! Cancer Answers reached the original goal of providing $1,000,000 for the Andrew Sowell/Wade Huggins Endowed Scholarship. The first Cancer Answers/Bobby Smith Cohn Scholarship was awarded.

2012: 61 Andrew Sowell/Wade Huggins Scholars, 13 Cancer Answers/Sylvan Rodriguez Scholars, and six Sowell/Huggins Professor/Fellow teams were named. The Sylvan Rodriguez Foundation Endowed Scholarship was established in honor of George M. Stancel, Ph.D. The 20-20 Vision of Cancer Answers provided vision for the next generation and increased necessary support for these young scientists.

2013: The first Sylvan Rodriguez Foundation Scholarship honoring George M. Stancel, Ph.D., was awarded.

2015: Cancer Answers reviewed the website and reached out to new friends.

2016: The Cancer Answers team planned an aggressive campaign to use technology and social media in fundraising endeavors.

2017: Cancer Answers has provided more than 25 years of continued support to the graduate students at MD Anderson Cancer Center UTHealth Graduate School. Together, we continue to make leading-edge discoveries that will one day end cancer.