The Relay for Life team at USC has been gaining momentum at home, but now they are being recognized on the national stage.
On Thursday night, the team was recognized by the American Cancer Society for their accomplishments from the past year. Relay for Life raises money for the American Cancer Society each year.
USC was recognized as having the fifth highest fundraising event in the nation, with a total of 1,964 people who participated and together rose $170,959. In addition, the USC team had the largest increase in participants in the nation.
The Carolina team was also nominated for the Most Outstanding Marketing Award. Jennifer Hodshon, a fourth-year education major and last year’s team director, was awarded the Youth Events and Outstanding Student Leadership award.
Student Body President Chase Mizzell and Vice President of Student Affairs Dennis Pruitt attended the ceremony and spoke about the impact of the philanthropy event.
“I think what you all do is the purest embodiment of love on our campus,” Mizzell said.
This year’s Relay theme is “Creating a World with More Birthdays,” and the event will take place on Friday, April 4 at the Blatt P.E. Center Fields. Participants will stay at the fields overnight, play games and circle the track, and cancer survivors will be honored with the “Survivor Lap.” Luminaria will also light the way around the track and symbolize loved ones fighting the disease or those who lost their battle.
According to the team’s website, 61 teams and 384 participants have already raised more than $13,000, and are trying to raise $175,000 by the end of the event.
“Everything you do for Relay, every moment you put in is worth it,” Mizzell said. “Every meeting you come to, every lap you walk, it’s worth it. It is saving someone’s life.”