'Think Pink' to make a difference
Our school colors might be black and orange, but Monday saw the occupants of Marysville High School clad in various shades of pink. Students paraded around with pink shirts, jackets, shoes and bracelets. Why? Simple. They were participating in a school-wide event honoring national breast cancer awareness month.
The posters advertising "Think Pink" week appeared out of the blue last Friday, surprising much of the student body, and consequently the first day was something of a flop. Not many people wore pink, and quite a few expressed surprise and regret upon rediscovering the pink-and-purple posters in the hallways.
"I completely forgot," said freshman Katie McNeal. "If I'd remembered, I would have found something pink to wear."
Those who remembered despite the lack of advanced warning and the mind-fogging weekend were rewarded for their efforts — they all got lollipops on the street at lunch.
The remainder of the week consisted of various activities on the street at lunch, which had been planned out ahead of time. It went more or less as expected, though the weather tried to get in the way.
Tuesday was the mummy wrap; Wednesday was the egg toss; today is pin-the-ribbon; and Friday will be musical chairs — a game open only to those who wear pink, as a way to entice reluctant students to participate.
The games and candy added a sense of good fun to what otherwise could easily have become a solemn, disparaging week, but some students' serious view of the event indicates that they would have participated regardless.
"It helps people raise money to fight breast cancer," said junior Mariah Stallcup. "Which makes it pretty awesome."
Less advertised than the games and candy is the fact that the ROP Small Business club is in the midst of selling pink ribbon decals — the small ones for 50 cents each and the larger ones for $2 each.
The window stickers not only raise visibility, but 50 percent of the net proceeds will be donated to the National Breast Cancer Society. In this way, MHS's "Think Pink" week is doing more than just raising awareness — it is trying, in its own small way, to make a difference.
Not everyone sees that, however. Some students are more focused on things that affect them directly, like their grades, social standing, relationships and family — all perfectly normal things for high school students to worry about. That is understandable.
However, one of the things that "Think Pink" week is trying to advertise is the fact that 1 in 8 women is directly affected by breast cancer during their lifetime. Simple math tells us that one-sixteenth of the school's current students is likely to develop breast cancer at some point during their lives, and the probability that other 15 will know someone who develops it is very high.
"Think Pink" week is trying to get the word out to students that it does affect them — or it will — because in one way or another, breast cancer affects everyone.
Before the week is out, high school students like freshman Aaron Kostas will have a lot more to say about "Think Pink" than, "It's OK."
Faith Denny is a senior at Marysville High School. Her column appears every six weeks in Education.