Students support youth cancer patients

By Kelly McKee
September 30, 2004

Lori Iannella

Cabrini’s “Up Till Dawn” executive board has high hopes this year for their fundraising events to benefit St. Jude Children’s Hospital.

Executive director Megan Beauduy, alongside assistant directors Liz Ritter and Sarah Boyer, head the board of 14 members. Comprising of sophomores, juniors and seniors, this team of dedicated students are willing to offer their time and energy helping, in what they feel, is such a worthy cause. Amy Hecht, the assistant director of Student Activities, and Jason Bozzone, the director of Student Activities, advise the board of students.

Danny Thomas founded St. Jude Children’s Hospital, based in Memphis, Tenn., in 1962. During times of strife, Thomas, a successful entertainer, once prayed to St. Jude for guidance in his life and promised that he would repay society in return. Thomas’ prayers were answered and as a result, he began planning and raising money for the establishment of St. Jude Children’s Hospital.

There remained one obstacle; once the hospital was organized, Thomas would need subsidy to support its’ annual expenses.

At the request of Thomas, a group of 100 Arab-Americans met to form The American Lebanese Syrian Associated Charities, whose lone purpose is to raise funds for the support of St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital.

Hosting some of today’s most gifted researchers, the hospital has been the location of many discoveries completely changing how the world treats pediatric cancer. To date, more than 19,000 children worldwide have been treated and all patients receive treatment regardless of their ability to afford treatment.

Due to work at the hospital the survival rate for the most common form of childhood cancer, acute lymphoblastic leukemia, has risen from four to 80 percent. Treatment in the hospital is free. “It’s magical what the hospital does, if you consider the mere cost of a check up at the doctor” Beauduy said.

“Up Till Dawn” was created in 1998 and since then close to $3 million has been raised by more than 105 colleges across America. Cabrini hopes to contribute this year by recruiting between 50 to 60 teams of five students. Primarily these teams will take part in a “letter writing party” on Nov. 3, inviting friends, family and community to make donations.

Beauduy visited the hospital during summer break and was inspired by the will and determination of the patients. “Cancer is a devastating disease that touches everyone in some way…be it family or friends,” Beauduy said. “It’s a wonderful feeling that just by addressing a letter you could be helping save a life.”

The executive board will be recruiting fundraising teams around campus, during events such as the involvement fair. The deadline for registering a team is Oct. 29. The executive board hope to finalize the year’s fundraising with an ‘Up till Dawn’ late night party with various entertainment.

For more information contact the
Student Activities Office or Pete Schauster at

Posted to the Web by Lori Iannella

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Kelly McKee

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