Even for those who are not afraid of heights, the thought of rappelling down a 38-story building is enough to induce a bout of vertigo. For those daring enough, it’s the perfect opportunity to catch a spectacular view of downtown Denver from one of the tallest buildings in the city, all while raising funds for the Cancer League of Colorado, a volunteer-run organization that fundraisers to support innovative cancer research and cancer-related services in the state.
On September 7th, the Fightin’ Prairie Dogs of RVU conquered the very understandable fear of heights and went “Over the Edge” of the Regency Hyatt Denver in support of the organization. The team included Nazia Acevedo, OMS I; Carolyn Kleinberger, OMS I; Kristin Lipe, OMS III; Amanda Sniadach, OMS II; Victoria Valdes, OMS I; Jennifer Wu, OMS I, and faculty members Rachel M.A. Linger, PhD, Associate Professor of Pharmacology; James Small, MD, Associate Professor of Pathology; and William Warkentin, MD, Staff Physician at Rocky Vista Health Center. Each team member contributed to RVU’s fundraising total of over $10,000 – making them the seventh highest fundraising team of the year!
For several team members, the decision to participate in the event was a personal one. After working in a hospital for her entire adult life, SD Sniadach had seen how fast cancer can take a life, and how miraculous it can feel to beat it. “I hope to contribute more of that amazing feeling through my medical school learning and rappelling opportunities.”
“As a former cancer researcher, I know the importance of organizations like the Cancer League of Colorado,” said Dr. Linger, who rappelled in 2017 and assisted with the team’s recruitment and fundraising efforts this year. “These six students exhibited incredible courage, compassion, and collegiality by rappelling 38 stories to raise fund for cancer research. Go Fightin’ Prairie Dogs of RVU!”
The Over the Edge event raised over $340,000 for the Cancer League, and the funds will be distributed through grants for cancer research and cancer patient services. To learn more about the Cancer League of Colorado and their upcoming fundraising events, visit their website.