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Annual Young Adult Cancer Conference

  • Save-the-date for the 2019 conference
  • A one-day conference for young adults treated for cancer, and their families

    The Young Adult Program (YAP) at Dana-Farber hosts an annual conference for young adult patients and their caregivers – offering strategies for coping with cancer as a young adult, and providing an opportunity to meet other patients facing similar challenges. The conference is open to patients treated at Dana-Farber and beyond, as well as their families and supporters.

    You can learn more by reading below about our most recent conference, held on April 7, 2018:

    2018 conference featured speaker:

    Lauren Leonard


    Lauren Leonard

    Lauren was a recent college graduate, working at her first job and starting her adult life in Boston, when she was diagnosed with stage IV primary bone non-Hodgkin lymphoma. Lauren has experienced many losses and changes, but has also found new passions like supporting the adolescent and young adult cancer community. She now works as a clinical research coordinator in the Jimmy Fund Clinic and will matriculate into a nurse practitioner program this Fall - with future hopes of treating patients like herself. In her keynote address, Lauren talked about how she has coped with the emotional challenges of a cancer diagnosis, and how she is learning to embrace survivorship.

    2018 conference featured guest:

    Kate Yglesias Houghton


    Kate Yglesias Houghton, President and CEO of Critical Mass: The Young Adult Cancer Alliance – Empowerment through Advocacy

    Kate is a dedicated policy professional with more than 10 years of experience in federal policy and elections, holding a BA in Political Science and an MA in Public Policy. While serving on President Barack Obama’s re-election campaign, Kate was diagnosed with acute myeloid leukemia (AML) at the age of 27. After successfully completing her treatment, she found herself to be “too young” to connect her personal story with federal policy advocacy work until she joined Critical Mass. Now Kate lends her unique personal and professional experience to advancing care and ensuring that the unique needs of adolescents and young adults with cancer are recognized at the federal level. At the conference, Kate shared her story, and how she found meaning through her advocacy work.

    Highlights from previous conferences

    Watch the 2018 Keynote Address from Lauren Leonard and 2018 Conference Snap Story video.

    Watch the 2017 keynote address from Abby Morgan and 2017 conference Snap Story video.

    Watch the 2016 keynote address from Katherine Walsh.

    Watch the 2015 keynote address from Carolyn Ridge and a Q&A with former New England Patriots player and cancer survivor, Joe Andruzzi, and his wife Jen.

    YAP conference

    YAP conference 2016 activity