Originally Posted: April 19, 2015
By: Lauren M. Castle
After another successful year, SMU tops Relay for Life fundraising
The American Cancer Society estimates that the event raised $176,400 in total.
Dr. Gordy Klatt created Relay For Life in 1985 in Tacoma, Washington. He wanted to raise money for the American Cancer Society’s efforts to end the disease. Since then, the event has raised more than $5 billion.
The Relay consists of an overnight walk and on-site fundraising activities and entertainment. Over 50 teams held on-site fundraisers at this year’s Relay, which included a cupcake sale and a dunk tank.
Relay is special to SMU senior Katie Schaible, who lost her father to cancer. Schailbe’s father died from melanoma when she was in high school. She believes the event allows her to honor her father’s memory.
“This has been a really meaningful way to fight back and to meet other people who have gone through similar experiences,” said Schaible, majoring in dance and international studies.
The American Cancer Society recently held a competition for its top 25 collegiate chapters to raise $250,000 collectively in three days. The chapters raised $315,654 in total. This year, SMU raised $45,534, the top amount in the country. Last year, SMU raised $29,000 in a 72-hour competition.
Schaible believes college students should be more aware of cancer. For her, Relay allows her to highlight how melanoma can be preventable.
“I feel like a lot of college students feel immune to the experience of cancer because cancer itself is a lot more common in older people,” said Schaible. “But it’s so true that at some point in everybody’s life they will encounter cancer in some way.”
More men than women will die of melanoma this year, according to the American Cancer Society. It is estimated that more than 40,000 men will be diagnosed with the skin cancer.
SMU’s Relay For Life raised more than $150,000 last year. Schaible was honored at this year’s event for being the top participant. She has raised more than $104,000 during her time at SMU. READ MORE