student philanthropy

SMU Dance Marathon benefiting Children’s Health Dallas returns Saturday, Dec. 2, 2017

SMU Dance Marathon logo

SMU students are throwing a dance party to benefit sick children, and the entire community is invited to join in.

The second annual SMU Dance Marathon is scheduled for 10 a.m.-10 p.m. Saturday, Dec. 2, 2017 in the Hughes-Trigg Student Center Ballrooms. And as a follow-up to its wildly successful debut, the student-led organization wants to bring in more faculty and staff attendees and participants, says senior Kimberly Rose, Dance Marathon president.

The organization raises money year-round for Children’s Health Dallas, a Children’s Miracle Network nonprofit hospital. The biggest part of those funds come from the marathon itself, which Rose describes as both a grand finale for the fundraising year and “a celebration of the children we work so hard to benefit.”

In 2016, the Dance Marathon raised more than $32,000, about $10,000 of it during the event itself. “It was a great start to what we hope is a longstanding tradition here at SMU,” says Rose, a journalism major minoring in advertising, fashion media and European studies. “You don’t have to be good at dancing in the slightest. It’s all about having fun, and opening up your heart to a cause we can all connect with – helping sick children.”

And dancing isn’t the only thing on the entertainment menu, she adds. “We have live performances, hospital stories, fund-raising, a rave hour, T-shirt sales, and so much more.”

Marathon organizers encourage students to stay for the entire event, “to honor the struggles of children who fight illness all day, every day,” Rose says. Faculty and staff members are welcome to register as participants – but all are welcome even if you don’t dance.

“We encourage anyone – faculty, staff or student – to come by, even for a few minutes, and enjoy any part of the event,” Rose says. “We want to be really welcoming to SMU, so that SMU will continue to welcome us.”

> Register for the 2017 SMU Dance Marathon, or donate online

SMU ready to Relay for Life Friday, April 8, 2016

relayforlife-bigSMU will celebrate its 13th year of Relay for Life on Friday, April 8 from 6 p.m. to midnight.  SMU students, faculty and staff are encouraged to participate to honor those who have battled cancer and make progress toward finding a cure. Currently, 1,332 participants have signed up for the event and SMU Relay has already raised more than $119,000.

The event kicks off at 6 p.m., Friday, April 8 on Bishop Boulevard, with an opening ceremony followed by a survivors and caregivers lap at 6:10 p.m. Lanterns will be lit at 9 p.m. to remember loved ones lost to cancer, to support people who currently have cancer, and to honor people who fought cancer in the past.

Luminarias can be purchased prior to the event for $10 by contacting Lauren Brandt. Closing ceremonies will take place at 11:45 p.m.

SMU Relay has always exceeded expectations. Last year, they set a goal to raise $158,000 last year and surpassed it by almost $20,000. They also placed first in the Number One Relay Challenge last year. We are excited to see what the final numbers for this year are!

smu-relay-for-life-300“I am so passionate about Relay for Life because too many of my loved ones have been affected by this disease. I am also passionate about Relay because I truly believe that one day the world will be cancer-free. Every dollar that is raised for Relay for Life and the American Cancer Society gets us one step and one day closer to that world,” said Katie Meier, Relay co-chair.

Visit SMU’s Relay for Life page for more information, as well as to see lists of all the registered participants, teams, money raised and events.