(Photo courtesy UMass Lowell) In place of the usual St. Jude Up ‘til Dawn, UMass Lowell has organized a new group called UMass Lowell for St. Jude.
In place of the usual St. Jude Up ‘til Dawn, UMass Lowell has organized a new group called UMass Lowell for St. Jude. Students may have seen the new name at the engagement fair or elsewhere on campus, leaving them wondering what happened and why it was changed.
Executive Director of UMass Lowell for St. Jude and senior business administration student, Erin Young, explained the rebranding. She said, “ [the] goal of this whole rebrand and changing the name is to get more students involved… [and to] be more inclusive of the entire community.”
The only real difference for students is the name change. There will still be individual fundraising, No More Cancer rallies and a big celebration in UCrossing at the end of the semester.
Young says that she wants everyone to know that you do not have to completely commit to it. “You can raise money over the semester and not come to the events,” she said. Everyone is invited to get involved in any way they can, whether they raise money, attend events or both.
Assistant Director of Student Activities and Leadership, Michael Kennedy, also spoke about rebranding St. Jude Up Til Dawn to UMass Lowell for St. Jude.
In 2019, UMass Lowell decided to end the Up Til Dawn at 2 a.m. rather than continuing through the morning, making UMass Lowell the first school to change the event’s structure. The school noticed that many students were not raising money past 2 a.m.
The St. Jude collegiate program said, “each school knows its population better and what would work for them.” This led to the decision to allow schools to pick between sticking with St. Jude Up Til Dawn or changing it to the school’s name plus “for St. Jude”.
The goal of this event is, Kennedy says, “ to keep raising money for childhood cancer research and help those families so the cost isn’t something they have to worry about.”
If a student registers and raises $100, they receive an exclusive St. Jude t-shirt. The $100 they
raised could cover two-thirds of the cost of physical therapy at St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital.
The mission at St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital is “to advance cures, and means of prevention, for pediatric catastrophic diseases through research and treatment. Consistent with the vision of our founder Danny Thomas, no child is denied treatment based on race, religion or family’s ability to pay.”
Various treatments created at St. Jude have helped push the childhood cancer survival rate from 20 percent to 80 percent. That 60 percent increase has changed the lives of many children and families. Without the support St. Jude receives, including support from collegiate events like UMass Lowell for St. Jude, this would not be possible.