Shaved heads abundant after St. Baldrick’s Day festivities
April 22, 2010 By Leigh Ivey
gathered in front of the Campus Center to watch members of the
Centre community go bald to raise money for cancer awareness.
Kerri Howard, community-based learning coordinator, was
one of the many participants in St. Baldrick's Day.
Junior Mariellen Boyle, who raised more than $2,300 for the St.
Baldrick's Foundation, says that “it was rewarding to know that
the money could help make a difference in cancer research.”
While having one’s head shaved might not be many people’s idea of a fun afternoon, on Friday, April 16, 26 members of the Centre College community fearlessly climbed into barbers chairs and watched their locks fall away.
The now-bald participants were taking part in the fourth annual St. Baldrick’s Day at Centre, an event that raises money for the St. Baldrick’s Foundation, an organization that funds more childhood cancer research grants than any organization except the United States government.
Donations are still being made, and already the Centre community has raised nearly $13,500 for the foundation.
Junior Mariellen Boyle of Hockessin, Delaware, who raised more than $2,300 ($1,000 of which came during the actual event) for cancer research, says that after making the decision to shave her head for St. Baldrick’s Day, “people were coming up to me and telling me their stories about how their nieces, their sons, or they themselves were affected by childhood cancer, and that really kept me motivated to stay committed to the cause.”
Supporting Boyle at the event were dozens of students from Jennie Rogers Elementary School’s “Cougar Den,” where Boyle volunteers each day.
“It was awesome to have them there, and I'm really glad they could share the experience with me,” she says. “It was rewarding to know that the money I raised could help make a difference in cancer research, and it’s also really important to me that my Cougar Den kids be exposed to service and philanthropy and become service-minded. I feel like this was hopefully an impactful experience for them that they’ll remember when they decide whether to become involved in serving the community when they get older.”
While Boyle made the decision to shave her head for cancer research prior to the event, several students made the decision on the fly, becoming inspired to join the cause during the event.
One of these students was Cole Steber ’13 of Danville. In the mere two minutes he spent having his head shaved, Steber raised $116 for the St. Baldrick’s Foundation—a record at Centre, if not elsewhere.
“I was inspired mainly due to my mother, who went through her own battle with cancer,” Steber says. “I love her very much, and she inspires me through her strength and the perseverance that allowed her to endure the various chemotherapy treatments she had to go through.”
The most gratifying aspect of his participating, though, was “knowing that by my shaving off less than two inches of hair, the money I raised is going to a cause that will help a child win the fight against cancer.”
Colin Edmundson ’13 of Memphis, Tenn., a Phi Kappa Tau member who organized the event (and one of the many Phi Kappa Tau members who went bald for the cause), says that what he enjoyed most about the event was “seeing so many people from the Centre community come up and support the cause. We had a rather large crowd of people just walk up and stay to see the event and even donate. Seeing everyone from the community come together like that was really special.”