Campus News

Dillard University earns CEO Cancer Gold Standard employer accreditation

June 16,  2023
Contact: Danielle Miller,

NEW ORLEANS – Representatives from Dillard University were among several other universities from around the country that were recognized by the CEO Roundtable on Cancer for championing health and well-being by advancing prevention, diagnosis, and quality treatment for cancer for their students, faculty, staff, alumni, parents and communities. Universities were recognized during the second Going for Gold Summit at the SAS Institute in Cary, North Carolina, on June 6 and 7.

The CEO Cancer Gold Standard is a workplace wellness accreditation program developed by the CEO Roundtable on Cancer that encourages and celebrates organizations committed to reducing the risk and burden of cancer. To earn Gold Standard Accreditation, organizations were required to demonstrate its health benefits and workplace culture include extensive, concrete actions in five key areas: Health education and navigation, prevention and early detection, advancing treatment, survivorship and well-being. 

“Dillard has been dedicated to the health and wellness of all people, particularly African Americans and other people of color, going back to the days of Straight University and New Orleans University,” said Dillard University President Rochelle Ford. “Not only are we leveraging resources that include the College of Nursing, Minority Health and Health Equity Research Center and Food Studies Minor, but we are also utilizing resources that improve mental and physical health for employees and their families.”

In efforts to cultivate healthy, safe and innovative communities, University leaders have been promoting health and wellness education to the campus. Dillard has formed a partnership with the pharmaceutical company, Merck, hosted a two-part webinar on HPV vaccinations, and secured no or low cost screenings and vaccination for employees through the insurance provider. Additionally, the University updated its no smoking policy to include vaping, making the campus community safer.

The Going for Gold CEO Cancer Gold Standard™ employer accreditation enables universities to contribute to research efforts through CEO Roundtable’s Project Data Sphere®, which helps expand access to clinical trial research and offers an open-access digital platform for aggregating and analyzing data to advance health equity efforts.

Because of persistent inequities in healthcare, Black Americans have the highest mortality rate of any racial and ethnic group for most major and all cancers combined, while Hispanic and Latino Americans are more likely to die from cervical, liver and stomach cancers. Going for Gold, which focuses on health equity, education, navigation, and access, is expected to affect more than 20 million lives in these communities over the next 10 years.

The Going for Gold partnership was launched in 2022 with eight participating educational institutions and has since grown to include 17 schools. It extends the impact of the Roundtable’s CEO Cancer Gold Standard employer wellness accreditation program to historically Black colleges and universities (HBCUs), predominantly Black institutions (PBIs) and Hispanic serving institutions (HSIs) across the United States. The program is made possible through Roundtable members with additional contributions from corporate partners Amgen, Jasper Health, Merck and SAS.

In a series of sessions at the summit, partners discussed efforts to promote healthy lifestyles on campuses, the challenges of improving clinical trial access for historically underrepresented populations, improving early detection and diagnosis of cancers and more.

A priority for many of the participating institutions is to create a more holistic view of health on their campuses. A session on the eight dimensions of wellness—social, environmental, physical, emotional, spiritual, occupational, intellectual, and financial—generated robust discussion about how to promote behaviors that reduce risk factors not only for cancer but also diabetes, heart disease and other conditions.

“This meeting was an opportunity for our partners to share their experiences in addressing the burden of cancer within their institutions and in their communities,” said Joya Delgado Harris, MPH, executive director of the CEO Cancer Gold Standard program and leader of Going for Gold.
“By utilizing the Gold Standard framework, schools can accelerate their efforts to implement programs and activities that will make a positive, sustainable impact in the lives of their students, faculty, staff, alumni and neighborhoods.”

For more information about Going for Gold and a full list of participating institutions, visit

About the CEO Roundtable on Cancer
The CEO Roundtable on Cancer was founded in 2001, when former President George H.W. Bush challenged a group of executives to “do something bold and venturesome about cancer within your own corporate families.” The CEOs responded by creating and encouraging the widespread adoption of the CEO Cancer Gold Standard™ which calls for organizations to evaluate their health benefits and workplace culture and take extensive, concrete actions in five key areas of health and wellness to address cancer in the workplace. For more information on the CEO Cancer Gold Standard and the no-cost, web-based accreditation process, please visit

About Dillard University
Dillard University is a historically Black institution that cultivates leaders who live ethically, think and communicate precisely, and act courageously to make the world a better place. Located in New Orleans, Dillard is a private faith-based liberal arts university that offers 22 majors and two certificate programs. Ranked 5th on 2021 The New York Times Overall Mobility Index and 14th in 2022 by Academic Influence for Best Colleges and Universities by Academic Stewardship, Dillard’s call to future leaders is to Write Your Legacy. Find out more about Louisiana’s oldest HBCU by visiting