For Morgan Farra, cancer hits close to home.
“Cancer has always had a significant impact on my life,” said Farra, a sophomore. “My grandma was diagnosed with breast cancer when I was a child and one of my close childhood friends fell to leukemia in high school.”
Farra took those experiences to heart, and as co-chair of Quinnipiac’s St. Baldrick’s annual event, hopes to make a difference.
The St. Baldrick’s Foundation raises funds for child cancer research by encouraging students to shave their heads in honor of the young lives afflicted by the hard-to-cure disease.
For the second year, Quinnipiac will host a St. Baldrick’s event. This Saturday, Farra and fellow co-chairs Catie Regan and Kristen Cagney will host a kickoff event to raise awareness for the March 1 fundraiser.
“It’s a simple way for Quinnipiac students to raise money and awareness, as last year’s event showed,” Regan said. “Traditions are very important to the community, and St. Baldrick’s has proven itself worthy of being a Bobcat tradition.”
The Student Programming Board raised $7,000 for St. Baldrick’s last year, greatly exceeding the original $2,000 goal. SPB hopes to raise more than $8,000 and increase participation this year.
Barbers will be on hand to shave heads, but will also be available to trim a few inches of hair from female participants supporting the cause but hesitant to sport the bald look.
“This makes the event different by adding a new dimension, which we hope will bring more people, including females,” Farra said.
According to Cagney, SPB has contacted most of the male-dominated campus organizations to encourage participation. This year, the St. Baldrick’s co-chairs reached out to co-ed organizations like orientation leaders and the Athletic Department.
“We’re using all our resources we have to network this cause as best we can,” Cagney said. “This is a simple way to raise awareness for a cause that so greatly affects children and young families across America.”
The kickoff will take place in Mancheski Seminar Room in the Lender School of Business on Saturday from 8-10 p.m. In addition to sign-up tables, the kickoff will be replete with snacks, hot chocolate, ice cream, information pamphlets, and videos which detail the mission of the St. Baldrick’s Foundation.
SPB also hopes to host a child from the St. Baldrick’s Foundation on March 1.
Junior Neil Brown, one of last year’s participants, said going bald has never been more exciting.
“Last year, I didn’t know what to expect,” Brown said. “I knew it was a good cause, but after hearing the speakers’ powerful stories, it gave ‘haircut’ a new meaning.”