Lehigh student-athletes want to make a difference. They have a genuine interest and desire to help others, which was on full display in front of Goodman Stadium last Saturday as the Student-Athlete Council (SAC) sold wristbands prior to the Lehigh football game vs. Monmouth.
The student-athletes were selling the bands in honor of former football player Brett Snyder ’00 and Snyder Family Medical Assistance. Diagnosed with ALS, Snyder is in the midst of a battle against what’s also known as Lou Gehrig’s Disease.10251
The idea to raise money for a cause began last school year with MacKenzie Velasquez ’16 of the softball team. She worked with Community Relations Coordinator Roseann Corsi over the summer, discussing ideas to raise money for a charity.
“As I began working with MacKenzie, I could see the passion she had to help,” said Corsi. “She wanted to make a difference.”
Last year, several members of the football team shaved their heads for a youngster named Jack Knudson who was an adopted member of their team. Seeing the difference the football team was making sparked a desire to help. Velasquez couldn’t shave her head, but she wanted to do something. Details needed to be finalized and SAC needed to decide what charity to raise money for, but most importantly, the passion to help was evident.
Junior women’s lacrosse player Nicole Isdaner ’16 was speaking with Corsi this fall when she brought up the idea to raise money for ALS. With the increased awareness of ALS due to the Ice Bucket Challenge, so too has the sobering thought that a number of people know someone who’s been touched by the disease. Corsi immediately thought of Snyder.
“I heard about Brett Snyder and thought it was a perfect idea to raise money for his medical assistance,” said Velasquez. “Everyone from SAC was on board, so we got the bands ordered. Roseann helped get the process rolling; everything happened so quickly.”
The Mountain Hawks sold brown wrist bands that read “Lehigh fights ALS” for just a two dollar donation. All the money is being donated directly to Snyder Family Medical Assistance.
The cause is extra special because it hits so close to home. As a former teammate of Snyder, Kody Fedorcha ’00 is taken back by the continued funds and support from the Lehigh family.
“To hear that more Lehigh student athletes want to contribute just blows me away,” he said. “I’m certain few, if any of them, personally know Brett and that’s why it means so much. I could not be more proud of my alma mater and the high character of the Lehigh students.”
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