How a Student Group Raised $13,000 for Pediatric Cancer Research

Students at the University of Montana have teamed up to help support St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital through a number of community events. The St. Jude Up ‘til Dawn student group was formed in 2012 for one mission: help children fight and overcome cancer.  This past year alone the student group has raised over $13,000 through its main event, Up ‘til Dawn, and other smaller events like Community Tap Night at the Tamarack Brewing Co. and On the Lawn with Up ‘til Dawn.

University of Montana’s St. Jude Up ‘til Dawn student group is made up of fourteen students and is advised by Dr. Emily Plant. This group is responsible for all organization of events and provides hands-on leadership skills to those who are involved. Working as a team, the group members secure donations (both monetary and donated goods/services), secure and prepare venues, and motivate teams and team captains to raise money and attend the Up ‘til Dawn event.

The actual Up ‘til Dawn event runs from midnight to 6:00 AM and is filled with games, activities, prizes, and plenty of food and drinks. Attendees have an opportunity to exercise their competitive sides and win prizes – all while staying up to symbolize the sleepless nights parents go through while waiting to see if their child makes it to the next day. Other events, like Tap Night, are great ways for the community to support such an unbelievable organization. Tap Night is held annually at Tamarack Brewing Co. in downtown Missoula, MT. With this partnership, Tamarack donates 75 cents per pint and $3 per pitcher of beer or root beer sold in a given time frame.

On the Lawn with Up ‘til Dawn will be held in tandem with University of Montana’s Spring Thaw event on May 9, from 2-6 PM. The group will be hosting games and activities on the Oval, as well as giving out some awesome St. Jude swag! We might even give tricycle rides.

Come join us!  2-6 PM Friday, May 9 on the Oval
Come join us! 2-6 PM Friday, May 9 on the Oval

University of Montana’s St. Jude Up ’til Dawn Facebook page can be found here, or follow us on Twitter! @UMUpTilDawn or #UTD406

If you want to support St. Jude’s and the University of Montana Up ‘til Dawn team, click here.

To learn more about St. Jude’s and its mission to cure and prevent diseases, visit the St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital’s website, or read more after the photo jump.

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St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital opened its doors in 1962 with a dream to treat and cure several types of pediatric cancers. In fifty short years, the survival rate of St. Jude’s patients has jumped from 20% to 80%. The hospital has two main focuses: treatment and research. On the treatment side, any child who is admitted to the hospital receives all treatment at no cost, including lodging, food, and travel for their family. St. Jude has become the leading treatment center for all pediatric cancers because of the organization’s culture of innovation, drive, and hope.

The hospital’s research focuses on “understanding the molecular, genetic and chemical bases of catastrophic diseases in children; identifying cures for such diseases; and promoting their prevention…

These two segments join to form an amazing organization; however, these cutting-edge techniques aren’t cheap. In order to keep St. Jude’s doors open, the hospital runs on a daily operating budget of $1.9 million – and is funded completely through donations. These donations come from events like the ones the Missoula Up ’til Dawn group hosts to help bring the community closer together while supporting a good cause.

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