Nearly 60 participants pull in more than $5,800
By Jonathan M. Gornet ’14
This November a small portion of students and teachers strolled around campus with unshaven upper lips, an unusual sight considering the school’s dress code.
“Movember” was in the air, a fundraiser sponsored by The Wrangler for raising awareness for men’s health issues. Following the lead of the national campaign, students and faculty alike could buy into the event for at least $25 and then compete to see who could grow the best mustache in one month.
Brophy’s 58 participants raised $5,858 as of Dec. 5.
Dean Mr. Patrick Higgins said that he thinks it’s all for a good cause because it raises awareness for various men’s health issues, such as prostrate and testicular cancer.
“I would consider doing ‘Movember,’ but I could not go a month without shaving,” Mr. Higgins said.
Movember was chosen as a fundraiser by The Wrangler advisors, Mr. Steve Smith ’96 and Mr. John Damaso ’97.
“There is a not a lot of cancer awareness for men, especially prostate cancer, because men do not really talk about it, so it originated for awareness for guys,” Mr. Smith said. “And all clubs are encouraged to have a service component, so we decided to do a whole month on men’s health.”
Originally, Mr. Damaso participated in “Movember” by himself before Brophy adopted it.
“Three or four years ago I heard about it, … and started to participating by myself, but not really raising money, just wearing a mustache for the month and then talking to people about men’s health when they asked about the mustache,” Mr. Damaso said. “And then last year I decided to bring it to Brophy, so I got about 15 teachers to participate last year for 2010, and we raised about $1,500 dollars, and students asked a lot of question about why teachers had mustaches.”
Mr. Damaso wanted to capitalize on that interest for the unique event and prosed students be allowed to participate this year.
Many teachers and students participated in Movember, including Mr. Chris Calderon, S.J. and Mr. Brad Frank.
“I just think it’s funny that a mustache, it’s actually quite out there, is an immediate visual that catches people’s attention, and it can start some conversations about things that either going flying by or unnoticed,” Mr. Calderon said. He said he believes that this is a great fundraiser, which mixes humor, advocacy and awareness for men’s health.
Mr. Frank also said he believes that this fundraiser was unique.
“I think it’s cool to let the students do it this year to get involved in it,” Mr. Frank said. “There’s all kinds of fundraisers here all time about breast cancer awareness and all that and don’t hear too much as far as men’s health.”
There is a specific reason why Movember focused on mustaches rather than just facial hair in general.
“Everyone has a goatee and beards nowadays, and if someone was wearing a goatee they wouldn’t say ‘why are you wearing a goatee?’ But if someone is wearing a mustache like, ‘whoa, why is that guy wearing a mustache in 2011?’ … Just having a weird mustache can start a conversation,” Mr. Smith said.
Not only is “Movember” being spread through mustaches, but three sophomores, Reed Bard ’14, Bryan Smith ’14, and Daniel Hall ’14, all made a short video promoting the cause, titled “The Wrangler Presents: Movember.”
“Mr. Smith is the one who approached us about this and he remembered from my freshman year English project I had a montage in it,” Bard said. “He told me basically if you put some sort of montage in the Movember video he would love that, so I figure if we just put a mustache growing montage in the Movember video.”
Sam Anderson ’12 said whole concept of Movember is an interesting awareness and fund raiser.
“I really enjoyed participating in Movember because not only did I get to grow out my stash, I was also able to raise awareness about testicular and prostate cancer,” Anderson said.