April Proclaimed Cancer Awareness Month At SHSU

April 7, 2010
SHSU Media Contacts: Julia May

April is National Cancer Control Month, and Sam Houston State University President Jim Gaertner has proclaimed April as Cancer Awareness Month on campus.

Gaertner’s proclamation reads:

WHEREAS, Colleges against Cancer (CAC) is a nationwide collaboration of college students, faculty, and staff dedicated to eliminating cancer by working to implement the programs and mission of the American Cancer Society, and

WHEREAS, with hundreds of chapters nationwide, CAC is showing the world that young people care and want to make a difference, and

WHEREAS, it is estimated that one in two men and one in three women will develop some type of cancer in their lifetime, and

WHEREAS, CAC is aware that until there is a cure, prevention and early detection is key to survival, and

WHEREAS, CAC is interested in promoting education about cancer and desires to involve students, faculty, and staff in on-campus programs, and

WHEREAS, CAC, together with Kats for the Cause and Staff Council are planning programs during the month of April to promote awareness,

NOW, THEREFORE, I, James F. Gaertner, President of Sam Houston State University, by virtue of the authority vested in me by the Board of Regents of The Texas State University System, do hereby proclaim the month of April 2010 as Cancer Awareness Month at Sam Houston State University and call upon the students, faculty, and staff to observe this month with appropriate programs, activities, and ceremonies, the efforts of Colleges Against Cancer.

“It is currently estimated that one in two men and one in three women will develop some type of cancer during their lifetime,” said Vicki Barrilleaux, adviser of the SHSU chapter of Colleges Against Cancer.

“Awareness of lifestyle choices and education about the importance of screenings for early detection are the keys needed to prevent and survive this disease,” she said. “It is the hope of Colleges Against Cancer that this knowledge will promote a cancer-free future for our students, faculty and staff.”

Among activities scheduled are a survivor banquet, health fair, guest speaker, bone marrow registry drive and an all-night relay event.

The SHSU Relay for Life Survivorship Reception and Banquet will take place at the Katy and E. Don Walker, Sr. Education Center on 19th Street at 6 p.m. on Thursday, April 15. The banquet is held annually to honor those who have survived cancer and encourage those who are still battling the disease.

A health fair will be held on Wednesday, April 21, in the LSC Mall from 11 a.m.-1 p.m.

On Thursday, April 22, James Olson will speak at 5 p.m. in the Mafrige Auditorium of the Smith-Hutson Business Building on his experiences as a “Cancer Man.”

Olson is a Distinguished Professor of History at SHSU and a Texas State University System Regents’ Professor. Originally diagnosed with epitheliod sarcoma in 1981, he has been through 10 recurrences, many rounds of radiation and chemotherapy, and the amputation of his left forearm.

He is the author of more than 30 books. One of his most recent books was Bathsheba’s Breast: Women, Cancer, and History, which won the 2002 History of Science Category Award from the Association of American Publishers. The book was recognized by the Los Angeles Times as one of the best non-fiction books in America for 2002.

His 2009 book, Making Cancer History: Disease and Discovery at the University of Texas M. D. Anderson Cancer Center, relates the story of the center's founding and of the surgeons, radiologists, radiotherapists, nurses, medical oncologists, scientists, administrators, and patients who built M. D. Anderson into the world-class institution it is today.

The Relay for Life celebration — the signature event for the American Cancer Society — will be held from 6 p.m. April 23 until 6 a.m. April 24 at Bowers Stadium.

“Relay for Life brings together families and friends to celebrate those who have survived cancer and to remember those who have not,” said Barrilleaux. “In addition, the money raised through the event goes toward research, informational services, community outreach, advocacy, and promoting healthy public policies.”

A traditional part of Relay for Life is the lighting of luminarias around the track after dark to honor cancer survivors or remember loved ones lost to cancer. Luminarias can be purchased for $5 ahead of time or at the event. All proceeds go to the American Cancer Society.

For more information about activities in conjunction with Cancer Awareness Month at Sam Houston State University, contact Barrilleaux at 936.294.1054 or email adm_vbb@shsu.edu.

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