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Brandeis University's Community Newspaper — Waltham, Mass.

ZBT collects names to raise funds

Published: November 3, 2006
Section: News

The local chapter of Zeta Beta Tau (ZBT), Brandeis unrecognized off-campus fraternity, raised over $2,000 for the Childrens Hospital Boston at Waltham last week in their first-annual Get on the Ball campaign.

It was tons of fun, said ZBT Philanthropy Chair Spencer Ackerman 07. The entire Deis' community got involved with it, and it raised enough money to really make a contribution to the Children's Hospital.

In terms of campus involvement, it exceeded my expectations, added ZBT Treasurer Bobby Geiman, 07, who planned the event with Ackerman. Were going to make this a semesterly event.

The funds, Geiman explained, were raised by having students sign an oversized inflatable earth-ball, with each signature being matched with money from corporate sponsors. After standing outside the Shapiro Campus Center Wednesday through Friday and asking hundreds of passing students to sign the earth-ball, 2003 students signed the ball, which is about two-thirds of the student body, said Geiman.

I think it was a great and unique event that really took into consideration the time constraints of the student body, said Emily Kadar 08. I think itll really help a lot of kids in need it was a great idea.

It was always interesting how some people seemed extremely put off by the idea of signing the ball, but eventually conceded to support the cause, Ackerman added.

The sponsors, Geiman added, included Kaplan, the website, Bacchus Bartending, Chimblo Real Estate Enterprises, as well as local teachers from Union High School. It really worked out in terms of connecting some sponsors donated per signature, some donated a flat rate, Geiman added. Some agreed to give us 10 or 15 cents per signature.

The total funds accumulated, after 17 hours of signing, amounted to $2,359. The funds went to the Childrens Miracle Network, a organization with 172 affiliated hospitals which ZBT nationally supports. Those funds in turn went to the Childrens Hospital, which will help fund any uncompensated care the hospital provides to children whose families cannot afford health insurance and who do not qualify for [State Childrens Health Insurance Program (SCHIP)], said Ackerman.

Still, the event had its difficulties: twice they were ejected from the Shapiro Campus Center, Geiman recalled. Also, because of cold evening temperatures, the earth-ball had to be deflated daily and stored indoors.

We didnt have a pump for the ball we had to physically blow it up every morning, and deflate it every night, Geiman said. It sucked, but it was worth it.

The ball was a tremendous success, added Ackerman. ZBT will be sure to run the event again sometime soon we love these events.”