Thursday, June 21, 2018

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Aztec Dance Marathon celebrates its record-setting fundraising total. (Credit: Aztec Dance Marathon) Aztec Dance Marathon celebrates its record-setting fundraising total. (Credit: Aztec Dance Marathon)
 


Making Miracles Happen

Aztec Dance Marathon raised a record-setting $243,206.54 to help the patients at Rady Children’s Hospital.
By Ryan Schuler
 

“When SDSU students come together, we truly can make miracles happen.”

San Diego State University students, with support from the campus community, raised a record $243,206.54 for Rady Children’s Hospital during this year’s Aztec Dance Marathon (ADM).

More than 1,500 students registered to participate in the 15-hour event, which is a tradition at many universities. This year, SDSU’s fundraising total was the highest on the West Coast and 70 percent higher than its 2017 result.

“I immediately fell to my knees when I saw $243,206.54,” said Marissa Torres, ADM executive director. “It still doesn't feel real. I have to keep rewatching the live reveal video on Facebook to remind myself, ‘Yes, we did that. It actually happened.’ There was not a single dry eye in the room because working toward that goal was something we did together. We made miracles happen together.”

During the course of the event, children and their families shared stories of how Rady Children’s Hospital helped them and how ADM’s efforts are impacting families in need, including several SDSU students who have had experiences at Rady Children's Hospital as patients themselves.

“We boldly set a goal of raising $200,000 this year and to see that we surpassed that goal by over $43,000 is just a testament to the ‘heart’ work that SDSU students have poured into this movement,” said Torres. “I am so proud to attend a university that values community and philanthropy.”

In the four years since its inception, ADM has raised more than $500,000 for Rady Children’s Hospital.  

“Whether it is through Aztec Proud, Aztecs Rock Hunger, or other philanthropic initiatives, SDSU students have shown such dedication to bettering our community,” said Kiara Proctor, ADM public relations director. “This campus has a strong philanthropic spirit and a true desire to give back. Every single dancer and donor had an impact on our total number. Without any single one of them, this movement would not be the same. When SDSU students come together, we truly can make miracles happen.”

ADM is part of a network of dance marathons nationwide that benefit Children’s Miracle Network Hospitals, a nonprofit organization that raises awareness and funds for local children’s hospitals. Last year, 30 participating universities raised $4,760,940.90 for the organization.