Please ensure Javascript is enabled for purposes of website accessibility Argo Shield | University of West Florida
Skip to main content

Argo Shield

Argo Shield is a Usha Kundu, MD College of Health initiative to promote sun safety and educate the community on skin cancer prevention methods. It is our mission to educate each of our fans and community members on how to enjoy our wonderful athletic teams and the beautiful Florida outdoors without causing long term damage to their skin. Argo Shield is currently funded by Florida Blue.

What is Argo Shield?


Argo Shield started from our desire to defeat a common enemy we all share called cancer. Skin Cancer is more prevalent today than ever before. Most people either know someone who has been affected or you have been diagnosed themselves with skin cancer. Argo Shield is an Usha Kundu, MD College of Health initiative to promote sun safety tips and educate our community on the dangers of skin cancer and ways to prevent it. This initiative was made possible by a $10,000 grant from Florida Blue. Like our college, Florida Blue is also passionate about the sun safety issues that Floridians face and finding ways to help solve and prevent skin cancer. We have several departments in the Usha Kundu, MD College of Health that work daily on awareness and research related to, the effectiveness of sunscreen, promoting good habits related to using sunscreen, and ways to detect and prevent skin cancer. The ultimate goal of this initiative is to educate the public on how to shield their skin from the sun and categorically reduce the risk of skin cancer in our community. Evaluation measures and qualitative feedback from our pilot testing will help determine the feasibility for continuing and potentially expanding the curriculum related to the Argo Shield initiative.

Argo Shield Photo Gallery

UKCOH students, student athletes, and faculty are using fun and games to teach local children the value of skin protection!

UV Index

By the Numbers

In Escambia County, the UV Index, which forecasts the risk of overexposure to ultraviolet radiation from the sun, ranges from two to three in winter to 10+ in summer. Additionally, the rate of melanoma, the most serious type of skin cancer caused primarily by UV exposure, increased from 15.52 to 24.57 percent from 2004 to 2014 according to the Florida Cancer Data System. In response to these findings, Argo Shield’s aim is to provide proactive education on the proper uses of sunscreen, skin protection from the sun, and increased awareness in our local community to reduce the number of people who will develop skin cancer.

Teaching Argo Shield at Bratt Elementary

Our Mission

It is our mission to educate all Argo fans and community members on how to enjoy UWF's awesome athletic teams and the beautiful Florida outdoors without causing long term damage to their skin.

This initiative is being used to promote educational and preventative methods at UWF sporting events throughout the year, and in other areas, such as daycares and schools in Escambia and Santa Rosa counties. At the UWF Education Research Center for Child Development, an early learning center on the UWF campus, children and families receive an educational toolkit on healthy sun behaviors. Sunscreen dispensers have been placed near the exits to all outdoor play areas at the center. The dispensers are meant to reinforce the use of sunscreen to our young children. UKCOH students, along with student athletes and the UWF mascot, Argie, all visit area schools talking to elementary and middle school children about the importance of sun safety. Using games, dancing, and rhymes UWF students and faculty teach the importance of skin cancer prevention through Argo Shield, reminding children to Shield the Skin You're In!

UWF's Usha Kundu, MD College of Health is committed to helping our community live safe and happy lives in the Sunshine State. Always remember Argo Shield and Shield the Skin You're In!