UNL's Actuarial Science club helped raise nearly $1,000 for cancer research at the annual Relay for Life held at UNL's Cook Pavillion. The club regularly participates in the event put on by the UNL Chapter of the American Cancer Society. The event itself raised over $37,000.
Current club vice president Laura McKay said the cancer walk gives Actuarial Science students an opportunity to give back to the community and bond with fellow students.
"The purpose of this all night event is to portray the struggles that cancer patients experience throughout their diagnosis and treatment," said McKay. "The first hours signify the initial diagnosis while it is still light outside. This represents the hope that the patient has. As the night draws near, this represents the darkness or loss of hope as treatment begins and the struggle to fight back continues. Between 2:00 and 3:00 am when participants are feeling especially exhausted, this reflects the last struggle before the dawn comes. At 6:00 am as the sun rises, the cancer patients are also greeted by this light at the end of the tunnel."
The ultimate purpose of the walk-a-thon is to raise money with the hope that one day cancer research can help create a world without cancer. McKay also sees the additional benefits to participants.
"It has given Actuarial Science students the opportunity to meet and interact with their peers. While many students attend classes together, these club sponsored events allow for students to interact on a more personal level and help foster friendships that will continue for a lifetime."
McKay said that the Actuarial Science club hopes to continue their tradition of fundraising and participating in events such as the Relay for Life for many years to come.