Hempstead, NY--Hofstra Northwell School of Medicine students sacrificed their hairdos for dollars in support of the St. Baldrick's Foundation and pediatric cancer research for the eighth annual St. Baldrick’s Day, an event at Hofstra University held on Mar. 9, 2016.
Together, the School of Medicine team raised over $23,000 for St. Baldrick's, among the biggest contributors to the university’s total donation of over $31,000 to fund cancer research.
In advance of Hofstra's official Baldrick's Day fundraiser, the School of Medicine hosted their own shearing event on Mar. 2 which brought together 150 first- through fourth-year students in support of the cause. A total of 42 med students shaved their hair for fundraising or trimmed their long tresses for wig-donation, including the first female to go bald for the cause and win the Peter Libman Award--a fundraising honor named after Hofstra's former Dean of Students who died after a long battle with pancreatic cancer.
The award was presented following the campus-wide shave event on Mar. 9.
"My goal was to raise $1,000 and deciding to 'go for bald' boosted donations," said Kristin Reese (pictured above, left), a first-year medical student and an aspiring pediatrician who collected $2,100 for Baldrick's. "I have no regrets about shaving off my hair, it's for such a great cause."
Also braving the shave alongside medical students was Marc Symons, PhD, professor of molecular medicine and neurosurgery and co-director of Feinstein Institute's Brain Biotech Center who spoke to medical students about fighting the brain cancer battle.
"The cure of brain tumors is an extremely challenging endeavor," said Dr. Symons. "Ongoing support for research is critical to speeding up the process of developing new treatments."
The act of head shaving is meant to show solidarity with kids fighting cancer, many of whom lose their hair during treatment. Leading up to the date of the event, each “shavee” raises funds which are donated to support pediatric oncology research.
The School of Medicine also participates in Children with Hair Loss, a nonprofit organization that offers human hair replacement to children at no cost.