Sigma Chi hosts Cookout for the Cure

For The News-Letter

Sigma Chi held a barbecue at the AMR I barbecue pit on Saturday to raise money for cancer research. Attendees could participate in various activities such as football and cornhole in addition to eating food.

Sophomore Eric Walker, a member of Sigma Chi, was hopeful before the event began.

“I think it should be a lot of fun. We’ve got cornhole set up, a football flying around, people are starting to show up,” Walker said. “I think they’re going to smell the food, hear the music, want to come over and hang out. It should be a good time.”

Students at the event responded positively to the activities that Sigma Chi had organized, citing the activities.

“It’s good, it’s nice to have a break from the past couple weeks,” sophomore Avi Mahajan said. “[The activities] are pretty nice. They have the usual but I like how the cornhole is different.”

Organizers have spent several weeks planning this event and managed to do it with little cost. Junior Sean Erfurt explained how they were able to coordinate the event.

“All these chairs and some of the tables lying around are from the house. So we had very low overhead costs,” Erfurt said, “And we spent about $150 on food.”

The cookout was organized to raise money for the Huntsman Cancer Foundation, which has a close relationship with the Sigma Chi fraternity.

“Nationwide, Sigma Chi often donates to this group because the founder is Jon Huntsman. He is a former Sigma Chi alumnus and essentially it just goes towards general cancer research,” Erfurt said.

Walker also spoke about Sigma Chi’s relationship with the Huntsman Cancer Foundation, which is located in Salt Lake City and supports cancer research.

“I went to Horizons, Sigma Chi’s leadership building program, two summers ago. We got to tour the Huntsman Cancer Institute and see all the work they were doing, the treatment they do for cancer treatment.”

Students thought the cookout was a good opportunity for community bonding on campus.

Erfurt also believes the event brings student at Hopkins closer together.

“I think it brings the community together. It gives the opportunity for freshmen to come out, just hang out, see each other,” Erfurt said. “There’s also obviously the philanthropic benefit to Huntsman Cancer Foundation. In general, I think it beats the stigma that Hopkins kids just stay in the library all the time. We also go out and do things for the community and that’s what I think is the most important thing.”

Junior Arpan Ghosh, one of the chairs of philanthropy at Sigma Chi, discussed the purpose of fraternities.

“One of the reasons why a fraternity should be on campus is to give back to the community and that’s through philanthropy,” Ghosh said, “We can all organize and have members who are in leadership roles and exercise their abilities [and] see how well they can be a leader at the same time have fun while doing it.”

Ghosh also addressed how the event addressed the stigma that fraternities only hold parties.

“I think there is more to fraternities than just partying and more to it than just the stigma of what we do, which is usually considered night life,” Ghosh said. “There’s a lot more to it, a lot more people don’t know and that’s the biggest reason why we, Sigma Chi, try every year as many times as we can to do something fun during the day, bring a lot of people close together, try to do something fun and give back.”

Sigma Chi considered the event a success based on the money raised and its community impact.

“We raised over $300 towards the Huntsman Cancer Institute and had over 60 people attend the event,” Ghosh wrote in an email to The News-Letter. “Since we almost doubled the money we invested towards the event with the Interfraternity Council’s help, and since everyone had a great time, I consider this event a success.”

Sigma Chi is also hosting a haunted house event later this month for families in the neighborhood as well as Hopkins students. All donations for that event will go towards Children’s Miracle Network.

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