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Celebrating Superheroes: Relay For Life Set for April 29-30

The sixth annual Relay For Life event, sponsored by the American Cancer Society, will be held on ’86 Field April 29-30 from 6 p.m. to 6 a.m. Relay For Life is a community event that celebrates the lives of cancer survivors and remembers those who have lost their battle with the devastating disease. The theme for 2011 is “Superheroes.”

In advance of this year’s Relay For Life, committee members will host “Paint the Campus Purple Day” on March 31. Throughout the day, members will have an information and registration table set up in front of the Russell Sage Dining Hall. In the event of inclement weather, the table will be set up in the Darrin Communications Center Great Hall.

Since purple is the symbolic color of cancer awareness, the entire Rensselaer campus will serve as a canvas in many different ways. Committee members plan to wear purple, and will paint the mural boards located along the Low Center for Industrial Innovation. In addition, the group has garnered support for their efforts from several campus departments. For example, officers in the Department of Public Safety will wear small purple ribbons on their uniforms, and some of their vehicles will sport large purple bows. The students have also made arrangements with Sodexo to decorate the Russell Sage and Commons dining halls in purple, and the Commons Bake Shop will provide purple-iced cupcakes and other desserts for the dining halls.

“This is a wonderful way to show support for a worthy cause,” said Chelsey Hochmuth, a senior majoring in biomedical engineering, who is also serving as this year’s Relay For Life chair. “The committee and I want to make this year’s event as big as possible, and we also hope to meet or exceed our fundraising goal.”

Last year’s Relay For Life event at Rensselaer had more than 1,400 participants and raised $92,000. Since its inception, Rensselaer has raised more than half a million dollars to support patient services, research, education, and advocacy within the Capital Region.

“This year, we are working to get more campus involvement,” said Brian Nock, a junior majoring in civil engineering, and Relay for Life event production co-chair. “We are a campus community, and this is a Relay For Life for RPI. While the event is organized by students, we really want to share the experience with faculty, administrators, staff, and their families.”

“If nothing else, we want the RPI community to come and join us at the Relay event,” said Jessica Giles ’09, manager of special events, Relay For Life. “The event is a memorable experience that stays with participants for the rest of their lives. I’ve always enjoyed stepping back and looking over the crowd at RPI’s Relay For Life. There’s nothing like watching hundreds of your fellow students walk the track and join together toward a common cause. It’s about fighting back as a community against a disease that has taken so much and touched many.”

The overall event is organized by a 23-member committee made up of Rensselaer students from the Greek Life community, the Colleges Against Cancer organization, Athletics, others from the campus community, and a staff member from the American Cancer Society.

For more information, and to register for Relay For Life 2011, visit: Individuals may also contact committee members via e-mail at

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Inside Rensselaer
Volume 5, Number 4, March 18, 2011
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