Pink Pack

University opens its doors to breast cancer advocates

10/2/2008 - By: Guia Del Prado
Pink The Susan G. Komen for the Cure was founded in 1982 and is the largest network of breast cancer survivors and activists.

Saturday night, you might notice something different at the Wolf Pack women's volleyball game. The players, the fans, even Alphie, will all wear pink shirts.

The game is just the precursor to the University of Nevada, Reno's support of the Susan G. Komen Race for the Cure.

Teaming up with the Northern Nevada Affiliate of the Susan G. Komen Foundation, the 10th annual Race for the Cure will be on the University quad on Sunday, Oct. 5 from 7 a.m. to noon. Participants from the campus and from the larger community have the opportunity to contribute to funding for breast cancer research, education and treatment.

Three events will be held during the race including a 5k run, a 5k walk and a 1 mile walk. Following the race is an expo with entertainment, a local sponsor booth, free giveaways, food and Susan G. Komen merchandise available for sale. There will also be a celebration garden where attendees can buy flowers and write uplifting messages. The registration fees and other proceeds from the race will fund research as well as women who are dealing with breast cancer and struggling to pay for their medical expenses.

“It raises money for women in our northern Nevada community,” said Komen board member Perri Finch. “Money for underinsured women with no resources to cover these expenses. And friends and neighbors who need help with breast cancer education and training.”

The event is the foundation’s largest in the region. When Leroy Hardy, director of community events for Wolf Pack Athletics, expressed the University’s interest in hosting the event this year, Finch thought it was a great idea.

“I think the University campus is the heart of the community and a beautiful campus,” Finch said. “With President Glick reaching out to the community to get them more involved with the University, I thought it would be a perfect place to hold our race and the expo.”

Raymond Needham, a coordinator at Scheduling Services, got involved with the Race for the Cure when it was still in its planning stages. He also believes that University involvement in one of the largest events in the region is a great way for the University to connect to the general community.

“These are the kind of events we like to have on campus to really involve the community,” Needham said. “It gives the opportunity for the University to host something that benefits many people.”

It was decided that the Quad would be the ideal setting to hold the Race for the Cure, not only to bridge a gap between the community and the University, but for the Quad’s sheer beauty. Many at the University are excited to invite the community to see the campus.

“It’s one opportunity for the community to come and see what the campus is like now,” said Mary Dugan, the University’s general counsel. “It creates an opportunity for those who haven’t attended campus events to see that there is a whole world here that they might be a part of.”

Race for the Cure also allows more members of the University to be much more involved in outside community events. Dugan is organizing a group of 20 people from the University to race at the event under the name Team Nevada. A Wolf Pack Athletics team will also be running in the Race for the Cure. Dugan has been participating in the race for a few years and wanted to make a team representing the University as a whole.

“As President Milton Glick has said, the new Joe Crowley Student Union and the Knowledge Center are the new living room of the campus,” Dugan said. “I thought that since we’re inviting the community to our living room, so to speak, we should have a campus team.”

However, Dugan believes the emphasis is for the University to partake in any way they can as opposed to just representing the University to the community.

“Many people at the University are participating as individuals or are involved on other teams,” Dugan said. “Really the important thing is for people to just participate and to help welcome people to the campus.”

Needham also urges students, faculty, staff and members of the community to either participate or volunteer for the Race for the Cure.

“A great deal of money from the race goes to cancer research, education about cancer and it really has an impact on a lot of people’s lives,” Needham said. “That alone is reason to participate or at least donate money. It will also be good exercise, hopefully the weather will be good, and it’s a good place to interact with other community members.”

The Susan G. Komen Foundation was founded in 1982 by Nancy Brinker to commemorate and fulfill a wish to her sister Susan G. Komen, who died of breast cancer. The foundation is the largest grass roots effort in raising funds for breast cancer research, education and treatment.

“This is all for the vision of the Komen Foundation,” Finch said. “And that vision is a world without breast cancer.”

If you are interested in joining the Race for the Cure, visit the Komen Northern Nevada or call (775) 355-7311.


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