Funds were raised through the LLS’ Silicon Valley & Monterey Bay Area chapter by some 39 high school students. The top fundraisers were Evergreen Valley High School freshmen Pranav Aida, Abhinav Balla, and Surya Sripathi, members of Team Cure Creators, who were named “Students of the Year.”
While simultaneously generating funds for LLS, the annual philanthropic leadership development program for high school students is intended to foster professional skills such as entrepreneurship, marketing, networking, financial planning, public speaking, and project management. It is part of the society’s Student Series, which also includes Pennies for Patients, a science-based service-learning program for elementary, middle, and high schools.
The Student of the Year title goes to students who raise the most funds in each community during the seven-week competition. In turn, local winners become candidates for the national title, awarded at the Grand Finale Celebration. Competitors raise funds in honor of a designated young lymphoma or other blood cancer patient in their respective communities.
The contest gives exposure to students and schools, and creates awareness of the need for cancer research funding. Students can run as a single candidate or, to increase campaign size and reach, with one or two co-candidates. Ideal candidates are high school students interested in and enthusiastic about volunteerism, philanthropy, and community engagement. Go here to apply or learn more.
“Congratulations to Team Cure Creators and all our candidates, supporters and volunteers who helped to make Students of the Year a huge success,” Jeff Scanlan, the Silicon Valley chapter’s executive director, said in a press release.
The local campaign was sponsored by Silicon Valley Bank.
LLS is the world’s largest nonprofit organization battling blood cancers such as lymphoma and multiple myeloma. In addition to funding research to find cures — nearly $1.3 billion since 1949 — it aims to improve the quality of life of patients and their families.
Lymphoma affects the lymphatic system, especially white blood cells called lymphocytes that work as protection against infections and diseases. The two main types of lymphoma are Hodgkin’s and non-Hodgkin’s. According to the LLS, a U.S. resident is diagnosed with lymphoma or other blood cancer roughly every three minutes.