Finale frenzy

By Kelly McKee
March 17, 2005

Shawn Rice

Letter-writing parties until midnight, pizza, movies and massages are just part of the rewards that Up ‘Til Dawn offers students, the biggest being helping kids with terminal cancer. The 14 member executive board has selflessly labored all year to plan and coordinate fundraising events that will climax with the finale party on Friday, March 18, in the Dixon Center.

Up ‘Til Dawn is a campus-based, student-run charity that benefits the St. Judes children’s hospital. The hospital treats cancer patients with their groundbreaking technology and care, and they do this amazingly at no cost to the patient. Up ‘Til Dawn is one of the most successful organizations at Cabrini College thanks to the dedication of the executive board along with student and community support.

“Up ‘Til Dawn is one of the best things a student can become a part of; knowing you are working to help save a child’s life is so rewarding,” Maria Moglioni, a special and elementary education major and Up ‘Til Dawn executive board member, said. “The children of St. Judes deserve a chance at life-to have a chance to go to college and do all the things we do.”

Letter writing parties, a dodgeball tournament and student dances have been among the fundraising events carried out so far. The success of each event has confirmed for Up ‘Til Dawn’s Executive Director Megan Beaudy that beginning the program at Cabrini was worthwhile. “I knew Cabrini students could do this,” Beaudy said. “The students here have good heads and good hearts and should be really proud of themselves for the help they have given these kids who, God knows, really need all the help they can get.”

Beaudy’s dedication to the cause will leave a lasting legacy at Cabrini, which she hopes will be carried on in the future. “Megan was so brave to start this at Cabrini; knowing what a small school we are, she set high goals for us so we would work to achieve our best, working together as a team, and I think we have done our best to raise what we could for these children,” Moglioni said.

In particular, the success of the benefit dinner held on Feb. 18 in the Mansion dining hall inspired the board. Over 100 students and community members came to the dinner where all food, refreshments and decorations had been donated. The night consisted of a buffet style selection of foods followed by speeches from Beaudy, board member Craig Vagell and Cabrini student Jackie Freese. Freese, a senior English and communication major, was diagnosed with osteosarcoma, an extremely rare form of bone cancer last year. She is an inspiration to many Cabrini students and supports the charity whole-heartedly, knowing only too well the effects of this devastating disease.

“Jackie’s speech must have taken a lot of courage. It was inspirational and emotional,” Vagell said. He was in charge of coordinating the event and was thrilled with its success. “We would not have been able to do it without the generosity and dedication of Rodney Stockett (executive chef for Sodexho services at Cabrini), he really was the backbone of the event,” Vagell said.

Over $3500 was raised at the dinner and this will be added to the grand total, which will be announced at the finale next week. The finale’s main purpose serves as a “thank you” to all students who have contributed time and effort to the charity throughout the year.

Featuring a diverse lineup of entertainment, the night is sure to have something for everyone. Attendees will be treated with live music provided by local bands Lovebomb, Tim Butler and New Union Rules. Students can also expect to see fun inflatables, a casino set-up, a final performance by Cabrini’s dance team, free t-shirts and all the food you can eat. In addition to all this, appearances by two members of the hit television show “Road Rules” will add to the excitement of the night.

Jana Fagotti, a senior English and communication major, has been working for months at coordinating this event. “All the hard work has paid off and the finale will be a great end to Cabrini’s first year of this program,” Fagotti said.

The finale party begins at 8pm and continues-hence the charity’s name-up ’til dawn. The celebration is free for students who have participated in Up ‘Til Dawn’s letter writing parties, and is priced at $25 for students and $30 for others. All cash collected 0will go to the charity.

“It’s going to be an incredible event,” Beaudy said. “I have a feeling people’s jaws will drop when they hear the total raised. Cabrini has really embraced this cause.”

Posted to the web by Ryan Norris

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Kelly McKee

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