Northwestern University and Evanston's Only Daily News Source Since 1881

The Daily Northwestern

Northwestern University and Evanston's Only Daily News Source Since 1881

The Daily Northwestern

Northwestern University and Evanston's Only Daily News Source Since 1881

The Daily Northwestern


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NUDM 2012 raises most money in 38 year history

More than 1,100 Northwestern students gave up sleep and danced for 30 hours for the sake of the Andrew McDonough B+ (Be Positive) Foundation and the Evanston Community Foundation. NU’s Dance Marathon 2012, the university’s 38th annual, raised $1,107,670, which is more than $88,000 more than what was raised for NUDM 2011.

The event kicked off at 7 p.m. Friday and marked the second consecutive year and second time ever NUDM has raised more than $1 million. President of the Evanston Community Foundation Sara Schastok received a check of $79,752.25 for her foundation and said the money will help more than 75,000 people. The B+ Foundation received $717,770.29.

B+ Foundation founder Joe McDonough said in one of his visits to the tent attached to the back of the Norris Student Center, “There are no words for me to adequately describe my appreciation.”

NUDM was emceed by Communication junior Ashley Thompson and Communication senior Ned Baker. Afterwards, the two were at a loss for words.

“One of the reasons there aren’t words is because we’re so beyond the point of coherence at this point,” Baker said. “Everything is just raw emotion just flowing.”

Throughout the event, B+ Heroes, children recognized by the foundation for courageously battling cancer, were introduced and danced with the NU student.

Baker expressed his appreciation for having the children there.

“Having them there to know what you’re doing instead of being like “oh, it’s money we’re shipping off somewhere,” he said. “Everyone understands what that is.”

Throughout the weekend, NU administrators such as Dean of Students Burgwell Howard and Vice President of Student Affairs Patricia Telles-Irvin, NU’s football team, and Evanston and Chicago political figures visited the event. Families of B+ Heroes spoke multiple times.

The NU men’s basketball team also visited just hours after their four-point road win against the University of Iowa.

University President Morton Schapiro said during his appearance towards the beginning of the 30-hour stretch, “Believe in yourselves and believe in DM.”

The 30-hour event was broken up into 10 three-hour blocks. Each block was themed and included subjects such as “You Know You Were Born in the ‘90s When,” “Cowboys and Aliens” and “Rep Your City.”

NUDM periodically played encouraging celebrity videos throughout the weekend. Dancers saw messages from “Saturday Night Live” cast member and 2011 Homecoming Grand Marshal Seth Meyers, SNL cast member and A&O Productions Winter Speaker Kenan Thompson, comedian Adam Sandler, sports journalist Rachel Nichols and television personality Jeff Corwin.

In a message that was played during Block 7, in the middle of the day on Saturday, Corwin urged dancers to “keep standing, keep dancing, and be positive.”

NUDM’s Finance Committee released the fundraising benchmarks the organization reached throughout the school year. The committee said NUDM had raised $11,537 by the beginning of the school year, $242,602 by the beginning of Winter Quarter and $510,617 by the full-money deadline on Feb. 24.

NUDM’s executive co-chair Scott Ritter said he was thrilled the organization raised more than $1 million for the second straight year.

“It’s a huge number, it’s a giant number, and we couldn’t be more proud of that number,” the Communication senior said. “But I think we’re proud of the number because it speaks volumes of the impact that we’ve made on others’ lives and the impact that others have made on our lives over the course of this past year.”

The committee announced other fundraising award-winners towards the end of the weekend. Greek organizations took home top small group, medium group and large group fundraising awards. SESP sophomore Melissa Scholl was the top individual fundraiser, with $5,500 raised in total.

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NUDM 2012 raises most money in 38 year history