FDM Holds Promo Dinner for Dance Marathon


Students sit in McGinley ballroom after getting food at FDM’s 6th annual Promo Dinner. (Courtesy of Olivia Ballone)

By Eliot Schiaparelli

Fordham Dance Marathon (FDM) held its annual promotional dinner on Thursday, Jan. 31 to raise money in an effort to end pediatric cancer.

According to Kimona Dussard, FCRH ’20 and co-director for FDM, the organization has reached 47 percent of its donation goal.

“This year we decided not to publicly announce our goal to build more excitement about the reveal,” she said.

The dinner is one of several events the organization refers to as “the series” in the lead up to the actual day of the dance marathon.

Other events in “the series” include the Trick or Treat Trot in the fall and the auction on Feb. 13. These events and other fundraising come before the day of the dance marathon and usually bring in roughly 80 percent of the group’s fundraising goal.

Instead of an entrance fee, students were asked to send 10 fundraising emails to non-Fordham students. Dussard said the emails yield more results than one would think.

“Those emails reach beyond the student body for fundraising and awareness and it also brings in a lot of donations,” she said. “You would be really surprised who will respond to your emails. You never know who has been touched by pediatric cancer and will support the cause.”

Dussard and her co-director Jacklyn Onody, GSB ’20, handled logistics for the dinner. The hospitality commitee secured food donations from Burger Lodge earlier in the year. After the first hour, the food donations from Burger Lodge started to run out.

Onody said she started ordering pizzas to compensate for the lack of burgers. She said committee members from FDM trekked to Pugsley’s Pizza to secure the pizza pies.

Dussard and Onody also coordinated entertainment for the event, featuring a student DJ and the Fordham B-sides.

While a few students were disgruntled that the Burger Lodge food ran out, Dussard said it spoke to the success of the event.

Students that serve on the board for their individual residence halls also helped out with the event.

Residence halls hosted walk-over programs that enabled students to send their 10 emails ahead of time and check-in to the dinner even faster.

Patrick Sawyer, president of the O’Hare board, said that FDM is an impressive organization with an amazing cause.

“FDM is a great event for two reasons,” he said. “First, it is great to put forth all this effort and see a great even come to fruition, and more importantly, it is a great way for the Fordham community to come together to work on something larger than ourselves.”

For the first time this year, Dussard said the FDM team created graphics to advertise the dinner for Residence Halls Association and FDM members to post on their Instagram stories.

She said the graphics were an effort to encourage members of the university community to donate or get involved with FDM’s cause, and for the most part, it has worked so far.

Dussard said she thought this year’s promotional dinner was a success.

“We had a pretty decent turnout of people who many of us on FDM and RHA had not seen before, which was really exciting because we want to get people involved in the event who aren’t necessarily the same ones planning them,” she said.

Last year, the FDM donation goal was $100,000, and the organization surpassed that number by $1,643.44. This year, although the goal is not public, the percentage that has been made so far is available online. Dussard said the organization hopes to reach that goal and possibly even surpass that number again.

The Fordham Dance Marathon will be held on Friday, March 8. To participate in the dance marathon or donate to support the cause, visit www.fordhamdancemarathon.org.