Svea Sheehan ‘27 (left) paints Sammy Craven's face '27 (right) on March 22, 2024 during Relay for Life at Grace Hall. During this event, Alpha Omicron Pi had a face painting station. (Sarah Zoller/B&W Staff)

Relay for Life raises more than $40,000 for cancer research


Lehigh’s Colleges Against Cancer held its annual donation event, Relay for Life, to support the research efforts of the American Cancer Society in Grace Hall on March 22.

Colleges Against Cancer President Liz Ingraham, ’24, said the name “Relay for Life” symbolizes that cancer never stops and neither do the people who work to fight it.

The event took place from 3 to 11 p.m. and had an Under the Sea theme. The organization set up an entertainment department for the event and had a large mechanical shark and various activities in the venue.

“We’ve been preparing for this for nine months,” Ingraham said. “It’s a great cause, and we’re lucky to have enough money to support us through the event. We got financial help from various departments on campus like Lehigh After Dark, the President’s Office and the Office of the Provost.”

Ingraham said Colleges Against Cancer spent a large amount of time contacting businesses and restaurants in Bethlehem in hopes of gaining donations to plan the event.

The event was filled with posters encouraging people to fight cancer and invited people affected by cancer to speak.

Students had the opportunity to honor those affected by cancer by writing the names of loved ones on posters during Relay for Life at Grace Hall, on March 22. For numerous years, schools across the world come together to honor and remember loved ones at similar events. (Sarah Zoller/B&W Staff)

“This is one of our biggest events where everyone comes together for a common goal,” Colleges Against Cancer Logistics Chair Emma Moriarty, ‘25, said.  

Moriarty’s mother died from cancer when she was 14. She said she is very passionate about this organization and has been fortunate to meet a group of people who share her goal of raising money to help more families.

“We want to raise awareness about cancer through our campaign, and I think that’s different with many donation programs,” Moriarty said. 

During the eight hour-long event, there were organized activities such as karaoke, selecting a Mr. and Mrs. Relay and bag decorating. The organization also invited the Lehigh Dance Team and the Gut Punch comedy club to perform.

Svea Sheehan ‘27 (left) and Carolina Doherty ’27 (right) participate in karaoke on March 22, 2024 during Relay for Life at Grace Hall. Lehigh’s Colleges Against Cancer Club organized various events for students to participate in such as karaoke, trivia, and zumba. (Sarah Zoller/B&W Staff)

“We want everyone to be eager to be here,” Colleges Against Cancer Co-President Quinn Klessel,’25, said.

Klessel joined the Leukemia and Lymphoma Association in high school. After coming to Lehigh, she joined Colleges Against Cancer and hopes to make more people aware of cancer impact and research through the organization’s efforts.

Providing aid to the American Cancer Society and families affected by cancer is the goal of every member of Colleges Against Cancer.

Lehigh’s Greek Life organizations also contributed to help raise funds.

“Since Greek life is getting a bit smaller at Lehigh, this year’s donation amount may be smaller,” Colleges Against Cancer Education Chair Olivia Hauck, ’26, said. “But, we’re still working super hard and looking to raise this as much as we can.”

According to the American Cancer Society website, this year’s Relay for Life at Lehigh has raised $40,600.34 in donations from organizations on campus as of March 27.

“Colleges Against Cancer is very welcoming to everyone,” Hauck said. “We are all in the fight to attack cancer.”

Candle lit bags sit on the floor of Grace Hall during Relay for Life at Grace Hall, on March 22. Students had the opportunity to write inspiring messages or the name of a loved one affected by cancer on the bags. (Sarah Zoller/B&W Staff)

The Marching 97 performs on March 22, 2024 in Grace Hall. The Marching 97 also performed later in the week at So You Think You Kan Dance. (Sarah Zoller/B&W Staff)

Winthor Weinstock ‘27 rides a mechanical shark on March 22, 2024 during Relay for Life at Grace Hall. The motto for the event was “Attack Cancer.” (Sarah Zoller/B&W Staff)

The Lehigh Melismatics perform a variety of songs on March 22, 2024 in Grace Hall. During Relay for Life, many music groups had the chance to perform their great talents. (Sarah Zoller/B&W Staff)

Caitlin Finnegan, ‘27, (left); Tori Kuzma, ’27, (middle); and Ella Sokich, ’27, (right) work at the Gamma Phi Beta table on March 22, 2024 during Relay for Life at Grace Hall. At their table, individuals had the chance to participate in mural drawings. (Sarah Zoller/B&W Staff)

During Relay for Life at Grace Hall, on March 22, 2024, participants had the chance to partake in a basket giveaway in support of Cancer. Baskets were of varying values and gifts. (Sarah Zoller/B&W Staff)

Ian Kenyon, ‘27, (left); Ethan Gerner, ’27, (middle); and Jacob Kane, ’27, (right) work at the Delta Upsilon table on March 22, 2024 during Relay for Life at Grace Hall. At their table, participants had the chance to “throw darts at cancer.” (Sarah Zoller/B&W Staff)

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