IAIA Goes Pink for the Cure

By Gaelyn Hite

The rules are simple: pennies good, everything else bad. October is National Breast Cancer Awareness Month and the IAIA is sponsoring its Fifth Annual Penny Wars to show support in finding a cure.

The pink display welcomes students at the Bon Appetit Cafe.
The pink display welcomes students at the Bon Appetit Cafe. Photo by Gaelyn Hite.

The Penny Wars was started in 2009 by R. J. Martinez, residential operations and conference coordinator. A display of pink is set up in the Bon Appétit Café bedecked with various information on breast health, statistics and free goodies like stickers and rubber wristlets.

But what has put the war in Penny Wars is the competition between all of the participants. Each bucket represents a different hall, divided by color, in the Residence Center and Family Housing as divided among the five resident assistants:

  • Sydney Isaacs ”“ all second floor female halls
  • Kyle Joe ”“ Yellow and Blue male halls
  • Logan Bluejacket ”“ Red and Green male halls
  • Dane Koponen and Gaelyn Hite ”“ Family Housing

But this war isn’t just for on-campus students. Every year all school departments are encouraged to design a bucket and to participate. This year’s contestants also include the president’s office, the center for student life, and the health & wellness program.

Pennies Add Up

Points are accumulated through the donation of spare change placed in each individual bucket. Positive points include pennies, worth one point; bills over $10 count for major points: $10 is worth 1000 points; $20, 2000 points and so on up.

Negative points come from any silver coin: nickels, dimes, quarters, and one- dollar and five-dollar bills.   These are worth negative 5, 10, 25, 100, and 500 points respectively.

In the first year of this program IAIA raised about $300 for the Susan G. Komen Foundation. This amount has increased every year, last year being the amount to beat with almost $700.

Asked about the prospects of this years Penny Wars, Martinez said, “I’m hoping, with this year being my last here at IAIA, that we raise somewhere around the five hundred dollar mark. That would be great.”

The Battle to Win  

The buckets are collected from the cafeteria every Monday evening and their contents are counted. After the second week the results stand as follows:

  1. Kyle Joe at +6869
  2. Family Housing at +1844
  3. Health & Wellness at +276
  4. President’s Office at -212
  5. Sydney Isaacs (all female halls) at -247
  6. Logan Bluejacket at -514
  7. Center for Student Life at -1142

These first two week’s counts have stirred healthy competition amongst the participants.

“Sydney thinks she’s doing great because of all the pennies in her box but I added a bunch of quarters,” said Martinez, the most competitive.

Keep a look out for the upcoming updates from the frontlines of the Fifth Annual Penny Wars every Tuesday.

Copyright © IAIA Chronicle 2013

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