Philanthropy, when broken down into its roots, means “love of humanity.” In Zeta Tau Alpha, we show our love and commitment to our sisters and humanity through supporting breast cancer education and awareness. Sadly, 1 in 8 women will battle breast cancer, and even more people will be affected by it. At Zeta, we believe those odds are too high, and we’re working to do something about it.
At our national level, the Zeta Tau Alpha Foundation partners with the American Cancer Society, the NFL and Bright Pink. Our partnership with the American Cancer Society focuses on survivor recognition, and through the Making Strides Against Breast Cancer walks, we work to celebrate those brave men and women who have fought and beaten breast cancer. Our partnership with the NFL focuses on awareness, and through the “A Crucial Catch” program, we are able to make pink not just another color. Our partnership with Bright Pink works towards educating women on proper breast health. Through the “Brighten Up” workshops, we help women catch breast cancer early and promote overall breast health. At SLU, the ladies of Zeta Tau Alpha support our national partners by passing out pink ribbons around campus and at local hockey games, volunteering at local Making Strides walks, and promoting the Bright Pink workshops. All three of these partnerships, along with our partnership with Self Magazine, help fight breast cancer across the country, but here at SLU, we’re dedicated to helping the women close to home.
At a local level throughout the school year, we hold various events aimed at putting the fun in fundraising. During the spring semester, we host smaller fundraisers aimed at keeping breast cancer education and awareness on the forefront of people’s minds. For Valentine’s Day, we host an event called Spread the Love where SLU students can send handmade valentines to each other, which are decorated with candy and puns like “I love you a latte” with a little latte drawn next to it. Parents also sent Zetas care packages as a way to spread the love from home. As a throwback to childhood, we also host an event called Freeze Away Cancer where we blast music outside Gries and sell Flavor Ice freeze pops on a spring day. As a Zeta tradition, we wrap up the school year with one of our most well known events, selling Grilled Cheese the night before finals. SLUdents love taking a study break for some delicious food and fun socializing! In the fall semester, specifically in October, which is Breast Cancer Awareness Month, we host our philanthropy week called Think Pink Week, which culminates with the Big Man on Campus competition. We kick off the Big Man on Campus competition, which is an all-male talent show open to fraternities and any school organization, with a big event where the guys earn participation points and publicize our upcoming Think Pink Week. During our philanthropy week, we host a series of fun events like Who Wore it Breast, a Krispy Kreme breakfast, Save the Boobies, a carnival, a lemonade stand, penny wars, and a profit share, which all goes into the crowning of SLU’s Big Man on Campus. On the last day of Think Pink Week, the contestants for BMOC do a group dance, answer interview questions, and try to win the hearts of the judges with a special talent. The contestant with the most points by the end of the week is crowned SLU’s Big Man on Campus.
Of course, these events would mean nothing if it weren’t for the support we receive from the SLU student body and extended community. Every two minutes, a woman is diagnosed with breast cancer in the U.S. The majority of us right now have witnessed someone affected by this disease. That’s why our philanthropy is so important. It affects everyone. Together as sisters, through spreading awareness and education, we are a part of the prevention of breast cancer, of detecting it early, of supporting those fighting it now, of admiring survivors, of honoring those that breast cancer has taken, and of never ever giving up hope. We are a group of ambitious young women who understand what it means to live for the service of humanity and for the greater glory of God, as it’s stated in SLU’s mission. We take to heart the opportunity we have to make a difference in this world we live in and to be the voice of breast cancer education and awareness!