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Arts and Letters raises funds for mammograms

Catherine Owers | Wednesday, November 6, 2013


For 14 years, the College of Arts and Letters has sponsored the Race to the Goal fundraiser to support breast cancer prevention during the month of October. Mo Marnocha, who organizes the campaign, said this October, the College of Arts and Letters raised more than $7,000 for mammograms, bringing the total amount of money raised over 14 years to more than $100,000.

Marnocha said the money raised goes directly to pay for mammograms for people in St. Joseph’s County, and the funds collected this year will pay for approximately 45 of these tests. 

“The facilitator of our fund is United Health Services, and they put that money into a special Notre Dame account,” she said. “When people come to them saying they need mammograms, if the person meets the criteria, the money will be used to pay for mammograms or diagnostic screenings.”

Marnocha said the College of Arts and Letters has sponsored a variety of events including an online auction, soup-offs, chili-offs and raffles. 

“We had a kind of flea market where people brought their goods and sold them in the Great Hall,” she said. “Also, one of the professors of music performed outside Crowley Hall.”

Marnocha said the College also hosted a tailgate Oct. 19 before the USC game. 

“It’s easy to raise money when there are people walking around campus on a home football game weekend,” she said.

For every year of the fundraiser, the Dean’s Office has sold notecards with watercolors of various campus buildings, Marnocha said.  

“That’s kind of our staple, we’ve always sold those,” she said. “Mark Roche, who was dean at the time [the campaign began] – his wife is an artist and a cancer survivor and she actually created those.”

The majority of the donations for the fundraiser come from faculty and staff, Marnocha said. 

“We’d love to have more students participate, but I know that our students on campus are already very involved in service,” she said. 

Marnocha said she came up with the idea for the fundraiser 14 years ago when she read an article about breast cancer awareness. 

“It was fairly new, 14 years ago, the whole pink ribbon thing,” she said. “So I went to the person I worked with at the time and suggested that as a team-builder we do a competition to raise money during the month of October for breast cancer awareness.” 

Marnocha said in previous years the fundraiser was a competition among various offices in the College, but this year they decided to change this style. 

“This year, we decided to do away with that and just do a total College effort,” she said. “A lot of people liked it that way, because there are people who will always work hard regardless if they are on a team or not.” 

Although the fundraiser did not reach its goal of $10,000 for this year, Marnocha said she is satisfied with the outcome. 

“We will ultimately help a lot of people with the money we’ve raised,” she said.

Contact Catherine Owers at [email protected]