UC’s Fourth Relay for Life a Success

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Photo by Daeshan Buseck

Morgan Golliver, News Editor

Utica College hosted its fourth annual Relay for Life at the Harold T. Clark Athletic Center on April 7. It was the first year that UC teamed up with SUNY Poly to raise money for cancer research.

Together, both schools raised close to $24,000 that will go directly to the American Cancer Society, according to Lyndsey Chenier, the president of Colleges Against Cancer (CAC) at UC.

“At UC, we raised $15,600 but still have donations coming in that will give us $16,000, while SUNY Poly ended with $7,600 during their event,” Chenier said.

After both Relays, Chenier said she was impressed with how the event went this year.

“Even though we didn’t have a lot of teams make it to the event this year, we still had a lot of campus support, including members of the football team that helped with our jail-and-bail tent,” Chenier said. “We also had a lot of media coverage this year than previous years.”  

While things went well, there were also things that could have been improved, including the promotion of the event.

“This year, Relay interfered with four major events, not many teams and organizations could make it, so in the future we want to spread the word about Relay sooner so everything doesn’t get crammed again,” Chenier said. “We also hope to find a different venue for next year since we originally wanted to have the event in the Dome, but it wasn’t ready by the time we wanted it.”  

Chenier added that since there was not a “deep freeze” event this year that normally helped with fundraising, the CAC self-donated $4,000 to help the cause, including its various t-shirt and bake sales before and during Relay.

Danielle Lynch, the vice president of CAC, was in charge of getting all the donations for the event.  

“We had more than $1,500 worth of food and gift cards donated for our event,” she said. “Since we got all the donations, we were able to use them in raffles and as prizes for the top fundraisers. Throughout the year, CAC holds bake sales, restaurant fundraisers and sells t-shirts to raise money for the American Cancer Society. It is a lot of work, but it is definitely worth it to know that I could be helping to save someone’s life.”  

Lynch also is a member of the Kappa Delta Phi NAS sorority, which had their own relay team.

“Our sorority is very involved in philanthropy, and myself as well as two other sisters are very active members of CAC,” Lynch said. “We were very proud to raise over $2,100 and be recognized as the top fundraisers out of 29 total teams.”  

This year’s event was freshman Peter Gaughan’s first time participating, but his dedication to the cause started at a young age after his mom was diagnosed with cancer when he was in kindergarten. He hopes to see more campus involvement at Relay for Life next year.

“It would be great if everyone on campus could get behind and fundraise for a good cause,” Gaughan said. “CAC is really pushing for more organizations to join next year and are encouraging individuals to make their own teams if they aren’t a part of an organization.”

This year was Kassidy Krenzer’s second year at the event and her 10th year as a cancer survivor. Krenzer was diagnosed with Acute Lymphocytic Leukemia when she was six and fought the disease twice.

In September 2007, Kenzer underwent a successful transplant in a Rochester after a hospital was able to match her with a bone marrow donor.  

“As of this September, I will celebrate 11 years cancer free,” Krenzer said. “I have tried to communicate with the donor but haven’t been able to. If I ever did meet them, I wouldn’t know what to say because a ‘thank you’ isn’t enough.”

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