February 22, 2024

UMW Relay for Life

Relay for Life at the University of Mary Washington will take place this weekend, Saturday, April 18 from 6 p.m. to 7 a.m. on Sunday, April 19 at the Battlefield Athletic Complex.

Come out on Saturday at 6 p.m. to donate/register with $10, and witness for yourself what young adults are doing with their time. Walk a few laps around the track, talk to the student organizers and participants, buy a burger or some baked goods. Show your support. I promise you won’t regret the time or money spent, and will walk away impressed and amazed.

These students aren’t throwing a party. They aren’t gaining something from this event. They are doing this out of passion, because in their young lives they have already been touched by cancer. To be at this event is to have renewed faith in the future.

Thank you in advance for your support.


UMW Relay for Life, April 18-19

The student-organized and run Relay for Life will be held from 6 p.m. April 18 to 7 a.m. April 19. Come out any time during the event to support the Relayers at the Battlefield Athletic Complex…get to know the teams and their stories, walk a few laps, and make a donation! Below are some of the many other ways that you can support and/or participate in Relay for Life at UMW:

  • Purchase a luminariato honor those battling, those who have battled, and those who have lost their battle against cancer. Luminaria will be available before and at the event, and will be displayed during a ceremony at Relay for Life. There are two types of luminaria:  White $10 (can be decorated and individualized) or Gold $25.
  • Send pictures of people you want to honor for the Relay for Life slide show. Photos and any questions can be set to mduteil@mail.umw.edu.  Include “in honor of,” “in memory of” or “in support of.”
  • Participate in upcoming eventsduring Relay For Life Awareness Week:


Relay Awareness Week April 6 thru 10

Wear Purple!

Monday, April 6:        Tabling at the Nest

Tuesday, April 7:       Fundraiser at Potbelly Sandwich Shop from 5 p.m. to 8 p.m. (encourage your co-workers and friends to go, all sales count!)

Wednesday, April 8:  Jail & Bail from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. in front of Lee Hall!

‘Purple Out’ lacrosse games at 4 p.m. & 7 p.m.

Thursday, April 9:     3 versus 3 Basketball from 4 p.m. to 6 p.m. in Goolrick Main Gym (Sign up in The Nest from 3/31 to 4/9)

Friday, April 10:        ‘Purple Out’ concert from 4 p.m. to 6 p.m. in front of Lee Hall and Ball Circle.

Jailed for Fighting Cancer

From left, Kashef Majid in the College of Business, Marty Morrison in university relations, President Rick Hurley and Provost Jonathan Levin hope to post bail on a rainy afternoon fighting for cancer.

From left, Kashef Majid, Marty Morrison, Rick Hurley and Jonathan Levin hope to post bail on a rainy afternoon to raise money for fighting cancer.

If you ventured down Campus Walk on Wednesday, chances are you spied President Hurley and Provost Levin in handcuffs begging for passers-by to bail them out of the slammer. They weathered the cold rain to serve time on behalf of UMW’s Jail and Bail. Also jailed for “fighting cancer” were Virginia MacIntosh in the Department of Psychology, Kashef Majid in the College of Business, and Marty Morrison in University Relations. Lori Izykowski in Advancement, and David Rettinger, in the Department of Psychology, even took whipped cream pies in the face to benefit the cause, along with students Lauren Strayhorn, Katie Sue Van Valkenburg and Alli Leibowitz.

The event, which also included an evening luminaria ceremony honoring those affected by cancer, raised nearly $2,000 for UMW’s Relay for Life.

Lori Izykowski from advancement took a pie to face to raise money for Relay for Life.

Lori Izykowski took a pie to face to raise money for Relay for Life.

That’s a great start to the $54,000 goal UMW’s Relay for Life aims to collect at the all-night celebration on April 5-6 to build awareness and collect funds for cancer research and to celebrate cancer survivors. The UMW community can join the effort by going to www.relayforlife.org/umwva.​

CVC and Relay for Life Team Up

Relay for Life and CVC Team Up!

As the Coordinator for the Commonwealth of Virginia Campaign at UMW, I’m very excited to share that CVC is teaming up with Relay for Life this year. Relay for Life is a wonderful opportunity for UMW students, faculty and staff to come together (along with community members) for a cause that has certainly touched all of us in some way. The funds raised by the UMW Relay for Life count towards the ‘direct giving’ component of CVC and contribute to the overall total for the campaign.

An overnight fundraiser for the American Cancer Society, Relay for Life brings people together to work toward a world with more birthdays and no cancer. Participants walk around a track for 12 hours in a symbolic gesture representing the fact that cancer never sleeps (to learn more about the symbolism behind Relay for Life, click here.) It is called a ‘relay’ because the team can walk in shifts.

In 1985, Dr. Gordy Klatt wanted to combine two things:  his love for marathons and his hate of cancer; so he walked for 24 hours around a track in Washington, ultimately raising $27,000 to help the ACS fight cancer. A year later, 340 supporters joined him for the overnight event and it’s been growing ever since.  Relay was brought to UMW in 2010 by Luke and Laura Ruth (both UMW Class of 2012.) Luke transferred from Virginia Tech, loved Relay there and wanted to bring the event to UMW. The first year they raised $32,000 and each year since the event has steadily grown.

Relay for Life at UMW is full of entertaining events:  every hour a different event is planned to keep participants entertained, including Mr. Relay, a pageant where male students will wear dresses; Relay Idol (which needs faculty/staff judges!); pancake eating contests; and a luminaria ceremony.  (General Facebook page for info:   https://www.facebook.com/rflumw​ )


Fundraising goal for this year:  $54,000 (currently at $17,000)

Participants:  600 (currently at 240)

Teams: 50 (currently at 40)

Survivors:  30 (currently at 14)

Faculty/Staff:  50 (currently none are signed up to participate)

How you can get involved:

  • Join or create a team:  Please feel free to join either the CVC team or create your own department or even a family team! There are no limitations for team numbers and anyone from the community (including family and friends) are invited to join Relay. Create a team here.
  • Donate to support fellow staff, faculty and/or students:  Everyone has been affected by cancer in some way, so even if you cannot come to the event, please help someone else reach their fundraising goal! You can find all of the teams listed here.
  • Purchase a luminaria:  A luminaria is a way to remember loved ones lost to cancer and honor those battling the disease currently. These are bags that are illuminated with candles after dark at a special ceremony and each bag is personalized with a name, photo, message or even drawing in memory of the loved one. Classic white bags are $10 and gold bags sell for $25 each. The luminaria ceremony is during the event on April 5 and BellACapella will be singing to honor those affected. We invite faculty and staff to come and witness this beautiful candlelit ceremony. We even have a luminaria ceremony next week (see Relay Awareness Week schedule below.)
  • Relay also has a “Relay Awareness Week” and we would LOVE to have a lot of faculty/staff involvement!  Below is the schedule and accompanying Facebook event:
  • Monday, March 17:  Paint the Campus Purple Day!

Everyone is encouraged to wear as much purple clothing as possible to encourage awareness. Committee members will be tabling on Ball Circle to collect donations.  https://www.facebook.com/events/228544210681766/

  • Tuesday, March 18:  Mini-Luminaria Ceremony

At 7 p.m. on Lee Hall Terrace, come to celebrate, remember or honor someone who has been affected by cancer. This will be a candlelit ceremony with music from the group BellACapella and a poetry reading.  https://www.facebook.com/events/536239293160818/

  • Wednesday, March 19:  Jail and Bail! From 11 a.m. to 2 p.m., come to Lee Hall terrace to see President Hurley, Provost Levin, Marty Morrison and Professor Mackintosh from the Psychology department JAILED for publicly fighting cancer! They each post their bail of $300 in order to escape, so stop by to donate to either help them get out, or keep them in jail! In addition to our jailbirds, Professors Asper and Rettinger have committed “Relay Misdemeanors,” punishable by a pie to the face. We are also looking for more faculty and staff to volunteer for pie-ing, so if anyone is interested, please email Katie Sue at kvanvalk@mail.umw.edu. Pie-ings happen for hour long stints, so we can be flexible to your schedule.


  • Thursday, March 20:  Purple Out Concert. Student groups Goody and Save the Arcadian will be preforming on Ball Circle from 4 to 6 p.m.! This will also be a marketplace, so come by to check out the students’ tables; all purchases will benefit Relay. In addition, if you would like to have a table at the market, please contact:  kvanvalk@mail.umw.edu.   https://www.facebook.com/events/694110663979028/
  • Friday, March 21:  3v3vCancer Basketball Tournament

6 to 8 p.m.  We are in desperate need of team sign-ups for this event! The tournament will be held in the AuxGym of Goolrick and anyone can make a team; registration is $5 per person. In the past, Dr. Searcy and other faculty/staff members have been on teams and we would love to have more faculty/staff involvement! Anyone interested in sign-ups should send a message to:  umwrelayforlife@gmail.comhttps://www.facebook.com/events/640125792702641/

Lori Izykowski and Katie Sue Van Valkenburg

“Carving for a Cure” Raises $400 for Relay for Life

The winners of "Carving for a Cure" pose with the judges, including President Hurley.

The winners of “Carving for a Cure” pose with the judges, including President Hurley.

On Wednesday, Oct. 30, “Carving for a Cure,” a pumpkin carving contest on Ball Circle, raised more than $400 for UMW’s Relay for Life.

For the first time, the annual contest was co-sponsored by UMW Dining Services and Relay for Life. More than 20 groups of students entered their pumpkins to win one of three prizes, while dozens more carved pumpkins simply to get in the Halloween spirit.

President Richard V. Hurley and staff members from University Relations and the James Farmer Multicultural Center judged the pumpkins on creativity and originality, theme, and overall execution.

Dining Services donated 50 pumpkins, refreshments and prizes for the event.

The following students won prizes for their pumpkins:

  • Kenneth Haddon placed first for his “Incredible Hulk”-themed pumpkin;
  • Julia Burzynski placed second for her UMW-themed pumkin;
  • and Laura Cutosky placed third for her Tinkerbell pumpkin.

For more photos from the event, check out Graphic Designer Amy Alexander’s album on Facebook.

Learning to Walk

A summer experience in Spain was a lesson in perseverance for two seniors.

Relay for Life

The 2012 Relay for Life at UMW will be Saturday, April 21. The following message is from Jon Meister, the faculty and staff committee chair for UMW’s Relay for Life:

Relay for Life is an incredible organization, and my hopes are for all faculty and staff to participate in all events or at the very least participate in the big event in April. If you have never participated in Relay for Life, I have provided a link that will give you plenty of information: http://www.relayforlife.org/learn/whatisrelay/index. All University of Mary Washington students would be very excited to see any faculty or staff at the big event. It creates a huge morale booster when walking all night for a great cause. For all survivors, we would love to have you participate in the survivor lap. It means a lot to see the faculty members that have fought this difficult battle and won. All my information is provided below and I will be able to redirect you to the survivor committee chair member if needed. Finally for all department chairs, if it would be possible to schedule a meeting with your department that would really help with my goal. It would only be for about 10 minutes to explain what Relay for Life is and how you can begin to participate at University of Mary Washington Relay.


Jon Meister
Faculty and Alumni Committee Chair