Although it is not unusual for CSU students to stay up all night, 250 students spent Saturday night up until dawn fighting childhood cancer.
“Up ‘Til Dawn,” a benefit for St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital, is the climax of months of fund-raising efforts done by teams of students across campus. This year CSU students involved in the 3rd annual Up ‘Til Dawn fundraiser brought in over $76,000 for St. Jude’s hospital, $9,000 more than last year’s grand total.
The event took place at the CSU Recreation Center from 6 p.m. Saturday until 6 a.m. Sunday, which represents the time a parent would spend up with a child fighting cancer.
“I think (this fundraiser) is very important,” said Up ‘Til Dawn Executive Director Johanne Jensen, a junior apparel and merchandising major. “It’s a positive way for college students to get involved on campus and make a difference for families around the world.”
St. Jude’s, in Memphis, Tenn., is the largest childhood cancer research center in the United States in terms of the number of patients enrolled and successfully treated. The hospital offers treatment to children from Colorado, as well as across the United States and from around the world, at no cost to the family. The hospital operates on public contributions and thus fundraises around the world.
Each fundraising team had the goal of raising $750, with many groups surpassing this amount.
“Everyone was able to come together and blow everyone out of the water to raise this much money for one cause,” said Ryan Dompier, vice director for Up ‘Til Dawn and a junior animal science major.
To celebrate the fundraising efforts, and to keep everyone up until morning, there were comedians, lip-sync competitions, casino games, food, laser tag, palm reading and karaoke. Sonny Lubick also opened the evening’s festivities with an inspirational speech.
“We have everything to keep everyone up ’til dawn,” Jensen said.
Sophomores Jenny Russell, a human development and family studies major, and Jacqueline Johnston, a technical journalism major, did their part by raising over $1000 through their sorority Gamma Phi Beta.
“(It was important to do) because cancer is a terrible thing and childhood cancer is even worse. We need to find a cure for it,” Russell said.
For more information on Up ‘Til Dawn or fundraising for St. Jude’s call the Up ‘Til Dawn office at 491-3358.