By: Rachna Burman & Rodashi Rahman, PharmD Candidate 2016
Relay for life (Relay) is a volunteer-based fundraiser to support cancer research by the American Cancer Society. Each April, students of St. Johns University participate in this event. Relay is a poignant event in which students who are either directly or indirectly affected by cancer can honor their loved ones and help make a difference in the fight against cancer. It also showcases the University’s Vincentian values of serving the community.
Our involvement in this event as freshmen and as sophomores inspired us to take on the position of fundraising chair for Lambda Kappa Sigma (LKS) this year. It is always inspiring to see the large number of students who come out to support such a wonderful cause each year. Our team—thanks to sponsors such as Johnson & Johnson® and Home Depot®—raised over $16000. A large amount of donations also came from several alumni who participated in the event this year.
Fundraising for a good cause is a rewarding experience. Over the years, LKS has raised money by holding events such as Rose Sales for Valentine’s Day, karaoke dinner, nail painting, bake sales, and candy sales. Even faculty members have shown support by coming to our sorority’s events. Still, for LKS, Relay has held a special place for the past eight years as a fund-raiser, especially since some of our alumni have been personally affected by cancer.
This year’s theme was called “Carnival of Hope,” which was quite different from those of previous years in that the Relay itself had several fundraisers within the event. Another fun component that was incorporated this year was a student-performed comedy show. All the other details aside, 118 teams and 1,509 people took part and raised over $100 000 to support cancer research this year. And even though many participated this year, more are always welcome. Relay for Life is something that every student should get involved in at some point in their academic career at St. Johns, because it is a great way to support the fight against cancer, to bond with fellow students and faculty, and to show some school spirit.