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Brandeis University's Community Newspaper — Waltham, Mass.

Athletes promote cancer awareness

Published: October 17, 2014
Section: Sports

Posters have been plastered across campus for the Be Bold, Be Bald! campaign. This programming is thanks to the dedicated work of James Machado ’16, Max Berner ’16, Noah Litwer ’15 and Allison Hackel ’16.

The project began this summer. The aforementioned students began planning the fundraiser while enrolled in the Marketing Justice Brandeis Semester program, taught by Grace Zimmerman. The first half of the semester involved taking a marketing class, and the second half revolved around a group internship. This internship took place at one of three marketing groups that partnered with Brandeis for the program. Machado, Berner, Litwer and Hackel were assigned to an internship at Small Army for a Cause.

Small Army, an ad-agency in Boston, assigned the group to their Be Bold, Be Bald! cancer awareness fundraiser. The event, which is scheduled for the third Friday in October every year, involves participants raising money and then wearing a bald cap for one day in support of cancer patients who have lost their hair from treatment. The group’s task for this agency was to design a marketing project that would raise brand awareness and make this company’s event more successful. The group soon realized that they wanted to bring the event to Brandeis.

Machado said that his inspiration for bringing the event to Brandeis was to honor his “grandfather, Ed Machado, who passed away from leukemia in 2007 … I’ve also had two scares with what turned out to be benign tumors, once at the age of 3 and another at 15.”

The Be Bold, Be Bald! fundraiser allows participants to direct the money raised to any cancer organization of their choosing. One hundred percent of the money raised from this event goes toward the selected organization. Machado has chosen to donate to the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society through this fundraiser, in memory of his grandfather.

Brandeis community members can get involved in this event by attending the men’s and women’s soccer games on Friday, Oct. 17 at 5:00 p.m. and 7:30 p.m., where fans can buy bald caps. The goal is to have the entire stadium wear bald caps in support of this event. Many Brandeis groups and teams have gotten involved in this event, including the women’s softball team. The softball team plans to attend the game sporting bald caps in support of their Team Impact partner, Christina Lacouture, who is currently fighting neuroblastoma. Team Impact is an organization that matches children with life-threatening, chronic illness with a college athletics team, providing the child with support and camaraderie, and the athletics with lessons on courage and resiliency.

The goal of this event for Machado, Berner, Hackel and Litwer is not only to raise as much money as possible, but also to spread awareness for all different types of cancer. Through wearing bald caps, Machado hopes the Be Bold, Be Bald! campaign’s message will influence the Brandeis community to get involved. “I really hope this fundraiser turns into a great community building event that brings the entire school together in support of a great cause that is also fun for students to participate in,” said Machado.

For more information on this event or to donate, visit To donate, set up an account or search for one of the many Brandeis organizations and teams participating.