There are numerous recognitions for Relay for Life fundraising. The highest recognition – All Star – is yet to be matched at Ferris, but one student plans to be the first.
Kirstin Thorhauer, first-year pharmacy student and Relay for Life veteran, hopes to raise $2,500, the bar for All-Star status.
“I have been involved with Relay for Life for almost ten years and have team captained over 10 different teams at four different Relays,” Thorhauer said. “Last year was my best fundraising year ($1,800), and I knew I could do better.”
Thorhauer’s stake in Relay success goes far beyond any title. Her grandfather passed away in 2012 of liver cancer, and her dog is currently going under chemotherapy for melanoma. After she was already well into this year’s fundraising, she was hit with another bombshell.
“I just found out a week ago that my Aunt Diana has been diagnosed with Colorectal cancer,” Thorhauer said. “She is still determining treatment options.”
The Crafters Anonymous team captain’s work continues. The number currently sits at $1,538.39, about 60 percent of her final goal. Thorhauer has gotten this far with a slew of different activities: a $240-raising penny war, candy and jewelry sales, and even money out of her own pocket. For every donation of $20 dollars or more, Thorhauer donates $10 out of her own paycheck. She has 16 qualifying donations so far.
The most effective method so far is the extra credit quiz.
“You must get a [teacher] to agree to help you, then you write an extra credit quiz,” Thorhauer said. “In order for the students to receive the extra credit from the quiz, they must purchase a slip of paper called the RELAY pass/ Insta-A from me for $2. I’ve made at least $600 this way alone.”
She hasn’t done this by herself. The penny war got Ward and Miller halls involved. Local businesses have also helped, including a Kilwin’s fundraiser on March 21.
Tyler Griffith, a senior in forensic biology, is one of those helping Thorhauer, selling snacks to the cast and crew at play rehearsals.
“Kirsten is very passionate about Relay For Life,” Griffith said. “During spring break, she even participated in a scavenger hunt game where she took pictures promoting Relay.”
“I have been told multiple times how awesome it is that my goal is that high for a college student,” Thorhauer said. “I would not be able to do this without the help and support of others. Whether the support is financial or time doesn’t matter.”