Too many events limit participation

May 5th, 2011

Saturday, April 30, 2011 was a very busy day for John Carroll University. Three major events big enough to have a day dedicated just to each, were scheduled for this day. These three events were Murphy Formal, Relay for Life and Cultivating Community Day. Murphy Formal was eventually cancelled but Relay for Life and Cultivating Community Day went on as planned.

The first event, Murphy Formal, the annual dance for Murphy Hall residents, was originally scheduled to take place on April 2 in the Green Road Annex. Due to a lack of ticket sales the dance was rescheduled to April 30 in the hope that more students would buy tickets. The Murphy Hall resident assistants did not want to cancel the dance right away since the students that had bought tickets were excited and looking forward to the formal. The resident assistants were aware of Relay for Life and Cultivating Community Day also being scheduled for April 30, but believed that if the students were interested in Murphy Formal, they would go anyway. The original April 2 date also had other events going on campus as well, including the Class of 2015 Celebration. After returning from Easter Break, only 20 tickets had been sold to the formal, in comparison to the approximately 200 students who attended last year. Ultimately the decision was made to cancel the dance. Sophomore Murphy Hall Resident Assistant Laura Kisthardt, stated via e-mail that, “Even though there was a small group of people who were very excited about the dance, it wouldn’t have been a successful event without a large number of people.”

The second event, Relay for Life, took place on Hamlin Quad and began at 1 p.m. on Saturday, April 30 and ended at 7 a.m. on Sunday, May 1.  This year marked the fifth annual Relay for Life hosted at John Carroll.

Since Cultivating Community Day was being held the same day, some teams expressed that they would be late for Relay for Life. The dates for Relay for Life events are placed on the calendar three years in advance so it would have been impossible to change the date. Although there was this conflict, the JCU Relay for Life raised more than double the money they raised last year. John Carroll’s 2011 Relay for Life raised a little over $36,100.

Senior Anna Genova was this year’s recruitment manager and stated, “The committee was very pleased with how the event turned out and how much money was raised.” There were more participants this year as well as more faculty and volunteer involvement than previous years. There were even five teams outside of John Carroll students at the event that were made up of high school students, alumni and elementary school students.

The third event that took place was Cultivating Community Day. Presently, Cultivating Community Day has grown to include alumni, faculty, staff, administrators and students.

To celebrate their 125th anniversary, JCU partnered with St. Ignatius High School for this year’s event. St. Ignatius and JCU are sharing the same milestone this year.

There were 500 participants this year for the event: about 200 JCU students, 200 St. Ignatius students and 100 members of the neighborhood. After a prayer service, breakfast and bussing from JCU, the participants split up to complete 18 different service projects. Some of these projects included working outside St. Thomas Aquinas School, cleaning up the Labre area, working on the East 95th Street community garden, and a few projects around St. Ignatius.

Although participation from John Carroll was about the same as previous years, like Relay for Life, Cultivating Community Day was definitely affected by the conflict of numerous events in one day.

Ted Steiner, the coordinator of immersions and special programs, was the coordinator of Cultivating Community Day. Steiner said, “We would like to avoid that [putting Relay for Life on the same day] in the future; we want people to be able to participate in both events.”