Heroes for Health Charity Fun Run

On Jan. 20, the College of Osteopathic Medicine’s (NSU-COM) Student Government Association hosted their Heroes for Health Charity Fun Run on NSU’s main campus. This unique superhero themed event raised about $1500 for Project Hope’s homeless partnerships in South Florida, including the Broward Partnership for the Homeless.

According to Trevine Albert, secretary of NSU-COM’s Student Government Association, the College partnered with the Council of Osteopathic Student Government Presidents (COSGP) and Project Hope just for this event.

COSGP holds annual meetings and service events like this one at various osteopathic medical schools throughout the country. Christine Fitzsimmons, National Secretary of COSGP and third year medical student at the University of New England College of Osteopathic Medicine, hopes COSGP will return to NSU soon.

Fitzsimmons said, “The location of our meeting changes from year to year, and we try and visit a different college of osteopathic medicine each year.”

Students and other members of the community were encouraged to participate in full spirit; the creative spin on this fundraising event was the superhero costume contest. 232 participants, led by NSU-COM Dean Anthony Silvagni on his Harley motorcycle, completed the three-mile run, while decked out as the hero of their choosing.

The NSU-COM SGA board members wore superhero capes made by Jessica Mahon, wife of parliamentarian Justin Mahon. Carisa Champion-Lippmann, president of NSU-COM’s SGA, said their team represented Silvagni by wearing comical mustaches.

“During the race, my e-board’s theme was “The Mustachio Mafia”, in honor of our dean and his famous mustache,” said Champion-Lippmann.

The runners were cheered on by NSU’s mascot, Razor the shark, and after the colorful event, awards for the best costumes were given to both individuals and teams. The prize for best costume went to first-year medical student Thomas VerHage, who arrived wearing superman underwear over a globetrotters jersey. He received a trophy and a six-month subscription to Comquest board preparation material. The fastest runners were Holly Schisani and Eric Brunk, also first year medical students.

The award for best team costume went to “The Incredibles”, comprised of first-year medical students Zophia Martinez, Justin Nippert and Ben Tillman, along with Tillman’s wife, Kate.

The event concluded with a health fair, in which NSU-COM’s Pediatrics Club and the Osteopathic Medicine Club demonstrated osteopathic manipulations and administered blood pressure and glucose tests on participants. Informational tables were also set up to provide advice on various health topics to attendees, including nutrition, skin care, global health and healthy study tips.

The executive board coordinated the majority of this fundraiser, which was the first of its kind at NSU. Champion-Lippmann suggested the idea to the board, and she and Albert, Elyse Julian, Sachil Khandelwal and Justin Mahon began planning in December 2012.

Champion-Lippmann said, “The SGA e-board all did an amazing job working together as a team to get this huge event planned and successful in a month’s time.”

On the day of the run, the executive board also made a trip to the Broward Partnership in Fort Lauderdale to unload the donation truck, which was full of water, food, clothes and backpacks donated by NSU-COM students. According to Trevine and Lippmann, the SGA now plans to make the run an annual event.

“Since it was such a great success, we are hoping to do it next year, and include even more colleges around campus,” said Champion-Lippmann.

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