AMA Wins RSO Fundraising Award for Polar Plunge| News from CoB | SIU

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AMA Wins RSO Fundraising Award for Polar Plunge

March 01, 2018, Franchesca Alejo

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The American Marketing Association (AMA) is an SIU Registered Student Organization (RSO) offering students opportunities for professional development and networking through activities that involve marketing and associated skills. An organization with nearly thirty members, the AMA was heavily involved with the Law Enforcement Torch Run Polar Plunge for Special Olympics on Feb. 17.

The day began at 9:30 a.m. with a donut dash 5K through the SIU campus. Participants received a deduction in their total dash time whenever they stopped for a donut hole; Dunkin’ Donuts donated the sweets for the cause. About 50 participants braved mid-30-degree temperatures for this year’s run.

Following the donut dash, the event moved to Campus Lake for the plunge into icy waters. Plungers had to secure donations of at least $100 to earn the opportunity to dive into the lake. Participants who raised the $100 received a sweatshirt and those who raised $250, $500 or $1,000 received additional prizes.

This year there were over 100 plungers and despite the chilly temperatures, many of them dressed especially for the occasion. Costume highlights included the highlighter wigs and T-shirts worn by a team of Special Olympics athletes. The best costume prize went to a team of construction workers dressed as a chicken with little baby chicks in the front pouch.

AMA supports this event from the initial planning phase all the way up to taking a leadership role during the 5K and plunge. RSO members contact local businesses securing event sponsorships as well as in-kind donations for use as raffle or award prizes.

Jordan Ramsour, a senior marketing major who serves as AMA vice president, said AMA has had a long-standing and consistent relationship with the Special Olympics Region K.

“We always try to raise as much money as possible,” he said.

 Through their efforts, AMA was able to raise about $1,500 for Special Olympics, claiming the RSO fundraising award for the top fundraising organization.

“I think it’s a great opportunity for people in AMA to not only gain experience in sales, but learn the ins and outs of a nonprofit organization. This is our primary philanthropic cause. It is how we give back to the community and the bonus is that we also learn from it,” Ramsour said.

The committee primarily tasked with coordinating the solicitation calls was composed of seven AMA members led by Daniel New, a marketing junior. He spoke about the role athletes play in the event and how they portray the true spirit of the polar plunge.

“Some of the Special Olympics athletes actually come to the event. They are just as involved in this as we are,” New said.

“They are having the best time of their lives. They’re hugging everyone and they’re joking around with the rest of us. They are some of the liveliest bunch of people I’ve been lucky to meet. This was a great experience,” he said.

The polar plunge has raised $18,329 to date and the goal is to bring in $55,000 in donations by April. 4. You can still support this fundraising effort by donating.