Recently Grove City College’s Sigma Theta Chi Sorority and the Pansophic Fraternity hosted Relay for Life. According to the American Cancer Society, Relay for Life is a life changing event and experience that “gives everyone in communities across the globe a chance to Celebrate the lives of people who have battled cancer, Remember loved ones lost, and Fight Back against the disease.” Every single day more and more people are affected by this awful disease, whether it is a close family member or a friend. Each year in late April these two groups come together to help make a difference in the lives of their families and friends, and quite possibly your family and friends.
Originally, Relay for Life was brought to campus in 2005 to raise support for fellow Pansophic member Brett W. Elsess who died of cancer in the early 2000’s. One of his fraternity brothers, Ryan McKracken, the Sigma Theta Chi sweetheart at the time, decided to start Relay for Life at Grove City College to help bring awareness to the fight against cancer.
This year Dillon Irwin and Taylor Lennox headed up a campaign to make this year’s Relay for Life the best one Grove City has seen thus far. The timing of the event was shortened drastically to encourage more participation throughout the event rather than just at the beginning. Also this was the first year CLP credit was available for other Greek groups, which encouraged more participation as well. For those of you who don’t know about Greek Life, CLP stands for community living privilege, basically this means that each Greek group on campus has a certain requirement of community service that they need to meet in order to stay a Greek group. Other reasons this year was different than years prior is through a more effective marketing and fundraising strategy. They started fundraising, setting up teams, and sending out support letters to family and friends in the fall. They also put up more fliers, signs, and had a dorm-storm, where flyers were placed under each students dorm the night before the event. They also gave each team that signed up more resources including letters to families for sponsorship that they could send out. Finally, they got the President of the College, Mr. McNulty, to speak during the event on how cancer has personally affected him and his family. According to Taylor, they “entirely re-branded and restructured what the event looks like to hopefully set a precedent for future relays to come.”
Reactions from students and members of the community who participated in the event were very positive. They all seemed to like the changes, especially in terms of shortening the time period of the event. It seemed to keep all of the students engaged and actively participating in each of the different events and games that were provided like the dunk tank, the corn hole tournament, the sumo wrestling mat, face painting, and so much more. While this year was definitely a memorable year for Grove City’s Relay team’s they are even more excited to continue the trend of Celebrating, Remembering, and Fighting back against cancer for years to come.
Check out Relay for Life’s website for more information!