American Cancer Society

Top Fundraising Chapter

The American Cancer Society has announced the top three Relay For Life fundraising chapters of Phi Theta Kappa for 2013. They are:

Members of Omicron Beta visit the ACS Booth in the Convention Marketplace.

Omicron Beta Chapter

Mesa Community College, Red Mountain Campus

Mesa, Arizona

Total Funds Raised by Chapter's Team: $9,244

Number of Phi Theta Kappa Members on Team:  27

Estimated Number of Hours Committed to Relay For Life: 300

In 2012 nearly 1,000 members from 95 Phi Theta Kappa chapters participated in the Relay For Life effort, raising $134,790 and contributing more than 20,000 hours of service.

Nichole Pfeiffer Hicks, Director of Youth Initiatives for the American Cancer Society, attended the Phi Theta Kappa Annual Convention in San Jose, California, April 4-6 and had the opportunity to meet chapter members who participated in Relay For Life. All three top chapters also helped to present Relay For Life Educational Forums at the Annual Convention.

“It's always an honor to be in attendance at the Phi Theta Kappa International Convention, and it's even more of an honor to get to meet and spend time with these students,” Hicks said. “Their passion for, and leadership in, Relay For Life is amazing.”

The partnership between Phi Theta Kappa and the American Cancer Society was born in 2002 when the American Cancer Society was chosen as the recipient for the International Service Program. This partnership is the longest the group has had with a member-based organization, and no other organization has raised as much money for the ACS as Phi Theta Kappa has.

"The American Cancer Society has proven to be as much a supporter of Phi Theta Kappa as we have been to them," said Jennifer Stanford, Phi Theta Kappa's Chief Student Engagement Officer. "Over this last decade, they have provided many outstanding leadership and service opportunities for our members through their events and programs and have generously supported our programs through sponsorships at our Annual Convention."

Ryan McConnaughy, President of the Omicron Beta Chapter at Mesa Community College, said members secured corporate sponsorships and utilized Facebook to raise the funds. "We all know that cancer is something that can affect anyone," McConnaughy said. "Everyone of us have our own personal connection with this disease, which fuels our drive for fundraising to find a cure."

During the month of May, the American Cancer Society celebrates its 100th birthday. ACS has contributed to a 20 percent decline in cancer death rates in the United States since the early 1990s. Today, two out of three people diagnosed with cancer are surviving for at least five years. In addition, the American Cancer Society work has helped lead to a more than 50 percent drop in smoking since the 1960s, which has contributed to a drop in overall lung cancer death rates.

Phi Theta Kappa Honor Society, headquartered in Jackson, Miss., is the largest honor society in higher education with 1,285 chapters on college campuses in all 50 of the United States, plus Canada, Germany, the Republic of Palau, Peru, the Republic of the Marshall Islands, the Federated States of Micronesia, the British Virgin Islands, the United Arab Emirates and U.S. territorial possessions. More than 2.5 million students have been inducted since its founding in 1918, with approximately 135,000 students inducted annually.