CSN Coyotes Make Strides Against Breast Cancer

Amber bc 4

Participants preparing for the walk

By Amber Sampson

College of Southern Nevada staff and students geared up for Making Strides Against Breast Cancer walk on October 5, run by the American Cancer Society.

“The excitement level is high,” said Lisa Bakke, budget services director at CSN and co-captain of the team. “We get to see this amazing wave of CSN Coyotes shirts moving through this wonderful crowd and know that we—CSN—are making a difference in people’s lives.”

Bakke said the CSN Coyotes raised over $6,200 online by October 28. The team ranked in the top 10 for most donations this year, according to the event’s website. Bakke estimated the team has raised over $50,000 in the last eight years.

“It’s a great reminder to me of the power of one,” Bakke said. “Our team and every team out there is made up of individuals. And those individuals made a decision to raise money for the purpose of fighting and ending this horrible disease.”

Making Strides Against Breast Cancer walk had: 387 teams, 4,327 participants and raised $265,279 as of end of October, according to the event’s website.

The 3.4-mile walk attracted a diverse crowd. Proud cancer survivors walked with purpose. Parents pushed children in strollers. Even dogs clad in pink advanced to the finish line.

Thousands swarmed the JW Marriott Las Vegas Resort & Spa’s parking lot where they posed for team photos and turned strangers in friends.

James McCoy, associate vice president of academic success at CSN and CSN Coyotes team member, described the energy as, “Through the roof”.

“Cancer can hit anyone at any time,” McCoy said. “It is important to get the word out about this life altering disease to bring awareness and support to our families, our friends and our neighbors.”

“I have walked every year since my sister died of cancer,” said Mary Edwards, a coordinator in the finance and administration division office at CSN and member of the Coyotes team. “This is my small way of honoring her and trying to do something tangible—raise money for research—so that other families may have success stories.”

John Bearce, director of institutional research at CSN and co-captain of the CSN Coyotes, said he learned a great deal about the American Cancer Society in his eight years of walking.

The American Cancer Society uses the money from these events for research to prevent, treat and cure cancer. “The American Cancer Society has lower administration costs, so the money raised here in Las Vegas stays in Las Vegas,” Bearce said. “It’s such a good cause.”

Debra Armstrong, a quality of life manager for the ACS, said the organization offers transportation help and lodging to out-of-town patients. Additionally, beauty workshops are available for women struggling with the appearance side effects of cancer treatment. The organization also links patients with fellow survivors for support.

“Years ago when women got breast cancer they thought it was a death sentence,” Armstrong said. “Not anymore. Now they’re survivors.”

Sign reads “This short walk rallies for life saving change"

Sign reads “This short walk rallies for life saving change”

Walkers at the event

Walkers at the event

%d bloggers like this: