In the 2004 comedy, Dodgeball: A True Underdog Story, dodgeball legend, Patches O’Houlihan, preached to the Average Joe Gym members, “Just remember the five D’s of dodgeball: dodge, duck, dip, dive and dodge.”
On Saturday Dec. 1, World AIDS Day, Cabrini College students followed O’Houlihan’s advice by participating in a dodgeball tournament while raising AIDS awareness.
“I play dodgeball every Tuesday night in the Dixon Center and it is always a great time. I’m excited to be here tonight not only to play dodgeball but also to raise money for such an important cause,” senior finance major Brian Scelzo said.
The tournament was one of the final activities capping off a week of AIDS awareness. After junior Bridget Flynn was chosen to represent Cabrini at Catholic Relief Services annual National Catholic AIDS Network in Chicago she was inspired to raise awareness on Cabrini’s campus.
“It was a conference to learn as much of the pandemic as possible and then bring awareness back to campus. As an education major, I’m always about teaching others and raising others awareness of issues they may never have thought of before,” Flynn, a special and elementary education major, said.
Worlds AIDS Day started early for Flynn and other Cabrini students. At 11:30 a.m. 20 students walked twice around campus. Following their morning efforts the dodgeball tournament made up of two teams of 15 students started at 6:00 p.m. in the Dixon Center. The day full of festivities came to an end with an open-mic night featuring a mix of performers including, senior guitarist Chris Sweeney and junior singer Lauren Townsend in Grace Hall at 9:00 p.m. with a crowd of 30 people.
“I would love to continue this again next year because I had such a good experience this past week. Most of the students and faculty here have been so generous and showed genuine support for the cause,” junior studio arts and English major Jessica Storm said.
Flynn helped raise money for the CRS program, AIDS Orphans and Vulnerable Children.
“I chose this program because I feel that these children orphaned and made very vulnerable by this disease are the most helpless, at least in most countries of the world,” Flynn said.
More importantly Flynn was able to raise AIDS awareness seeing her vision through.
“I do think I raised at least some people’s awareness, more than it had been at Cabrini in the past. I certainly had enough opportunities for students to inform and educate themselves. I think anyone who cared enough to stop by any of the events, gained something. It’s my firm belief that if I was able to reach, truly reach, at least one person, then I’ve at least done something. Because that one person may be able to reach another, and so on,” Flynn said.