Rhodes and Beyond

Teaming Up to Help St. Jude

By Lindsay Gess’17

Quantifying the value of St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital to the Rhodes community would pose an impossible task. So, last year, a group of Rhodes community members set out to do the next-best thing: form a group to band together during the 2013 St. Jude Memphis Marathon to raise as much money as possible for the beloved facility. The goal was to get 100 people to participate, and students, faculty, staff, and alums—both runners and non-runners alike—rose to the challenge. By the time of the marathon in December, Team Rhodes had raised $80,480 through the St. Jude Heroes program.

Women’s Field Hockey Coach Jane Wells and Regina Simmons, director of new student programs, were inspired to start Team Rhodes after attending a Heroes dinner the night before the St. Jude race in 2012. Both Wells and Simmons have dedicated themselves to volunteering at St. Jude every week and to participating in the race every year. But they haven’t stopped there—they plan to keep fighting for more donations. As Wells states, “I can’t wait to see what we do next year!”

Among the contributors, the Rhodes women’s field hockey team raised $17,000 of the grand total through the efforts of 13 players, three coaches, and three alumni players. “It was an amazing experience and I think we all learned a lot,” says Wells. “I could see this event becoming a tradition for our team. It was so powerful to see how much money we could raise for such a great cause.”

Andrew Tait ’15 of Charlotte, NC, raised $1,933.60 by writing letters to family members, friends, and mentors. A competitive runner since the eighth grade, Tait’s strongest motivation was the mantra “Cancer does not quit.”

Rhodes alum Rebekah Mulloy ’08, a pediatric nurse, has run in the marathon for five consecutive years. “These kids are my heroes,” she says, so she was driven to do more this year. She started writing letters to her family and friends and beat her original goal of $500 by raising a total of $2,380 for St. Jude.

Sadly, icy streets forced the cancelation of the race in December. But at Rhodes, no matter what the weather, the support for St. Jude remains exceedingly strong.