Seeing pink during Breast Cancer Awareness Month

NYU Sorority, Zeta Tau Alpha, have been working hard to raise money to enable the American Cancer Society to fund crucial breast cancer research.

Jake Quan

NYU Sorority, Zeta Tau Alpha, have been working hard to raise money to enable the American Cancer Society to fund crucial breast cancer research.

Christine Wang, Deputy News Editor

In honor of Breast Cancer Awareness Month, various organizations around campus have organized various fundraising events to promote research and raise awareness of symptoms.

On Oct. 9, the NYU Muslim Student Association organized various events in hopes to stimulate awareness among the student body. Hina Afridi, CAS Junior and chair of the MSA Board, said all proceeds were donated to the American Cancer Society.

“We try to have an annual Pink Out, in which we ask everyone to participate by wearing any pink clothing,” Afridi said. “On top of that, we try to have a bake sale in which all proceeds go towards breast cancer research. We ask different students and community members to bring in baked goods which we sell after our Friday Prayer Services. This tends to be very successful.”

Due to breast cancer diagnoses in her family and the death of a close family friend, Afridi feels strongly about this necessity of the monthlong raising of awareness.

“I was affected by breast cancer when my aunt was diagnosed with breast cancer twelve years ago,” Afridi said. “Most people are aware that October is Breast Cancer Awareness Month, but they may not know facts about breast cancer symptoms or how to do a self-check. And, if a disease like cancer can be caught early or can even be prevented, I think it’s extremely important to spread the word about how to do so.”

NYU Abu Dhabi is also participating in the month’s theme. In addition to lighting up pink, the school is hosting activities such as Funny Girls Go Pink, an all-female stand up comedy performance, and High Tea, which features speakers and an audience of cancer survivors, doctors and various members of the community.

Although Breast Cancer Awareness Month events are being hosted by various NYU student organizations, NYU has not announced plans to host its own.

Sororities and fraternities also host various breast cancer awareness events throughout the month of October. Zeta Tau Alpha organized events ranging from a “Kiss Away Cancer” bake sale to “Think Pink,” which was the reason behind NFL players wearing pink throughout the month.

Stephanie Tweel, Steinhardt junior and philanthropy co-chair in the sorority, said “Big Man on Campus,” a male beauty pageant with NYU fraternities, is their most popular fundraising event and it alone raised $1,900 this year.

Colleges For Cancer set a table up in Kimmel last Thursday to provide information about breast cancer screening and the Making Strides Against Breast Cancer walk on Sunday. Steinhardt senior Jaclyn Mironov, the media coordinator for Colleges Against Cancer at NYU, stressed how much work was put into the walk.

“We had over 20 volunteers come to Making Strides in Central Park at 6:30am and we worked at the registration tent,” Mironov said. “We signed in over 50 participants each, collected donations, and provided other information and directions.”

Tweel also discussed how her passion for the cause stems not only from personal ways breast cancer has touched her life, but also from a belief that “Pinktober” is not always taken as seriously as it should be.

“Aside from the fact that it is important to raise money towards funding a cure for breast cancer, I feel an obligation to raise awareness about this — especially to college students — because I want to remind people that breast cancer is not just about ‘saving the tatas,’” Tweel said. “Sometimes ‘Pinktober’ can be a bit commercialized, and I want to make sure our events focus on how serious breast cancer is.”

Email Christine Wang at [email protected].