union united

Beautiful Kristen Shinebarger (holding a Union student's pet chinchilla brought as a snuggle surprise for the event!) with her father, mother, and friend.

This past weekend Union’s Colleges Against Cancer club ran its first ever Dutchmen Dip in honor of 10-year old Union College community member Kristen Shinebarger. Kristen’s mother, Shelly, is the Director of Student Support Services on campus. Kristen is battling Ewings Sarcoma, a rare form of bone cancer for the second time. On September 11, 2012, Kristen’s leg was amputated in order to battle this disease. On Sunday, Union rallied behind Kristen in order to help raise money for a good prosthetic leg so that she can hopefully get back to doing the things she loves. Union students plunged into an outdoor pool dressed in wacky and wild outfits to show their support and entertain our guest of honor, little Kristen herself! While I wasn’t able to attend the event (I was in D.C.), looking at the pictures online while on the phone with my beautiful housemate and co-organizer of the event, Kaitlyn Suarez (Union College class of 2015, co-preident of Colleges Against Cancer, and an incredibly inspiring cancer survivor herself!) on Sunday evening literally overwhelmed me with so much Union pride and love for this school that all I wanted was to be back in the 12308. Only at Union could something as amazing as this be pulled off!

I'm not sure what Kaitlyn (left) or her event co-organizer and Colleges Against Cancer co-president Maria Dreeszen (right) find more entertaining -- the fact that it is snowing for the plunge or the lovely lax boys ready to dive in the background!


Event organizer Kaitlyn's father showed up as a complete surprise and continued to pull out all the stops by jumping into the pool dressed as a giant apple. THIS is what Kristen and her family are laughing at above!

If you’re inspired and still interested in donating, you’re in luck!! Our donation page is still available at: https://rally.org/dutchmendip/h5FItWkOWrs/catziac Please help us continue to show our support for this gorgeous little girl!!

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My name is Catherine Elizabeth Ziac (Cat, for short) and I am a senior at Union College in Schenectady, NY. When I'm not studying for my major in economics or my minor in Russian, you can find me skimming through catalogs, playing the flute, fishing, online window shopping, chatting with my sisters (my twin, Julia, studying physics at the California Institute of Technology in Pasadena, CA, or my little sister Maddy, currently a senior in high school), or out and about in good old Schenectady with my wonderful Union friends! I love pink nails, long showers, office supplies, and going to the public library. I spend too much time looking at blogs and skimming the WSJ online, but I still believe in the merits of a hand-written letter. I am always in the mood for yogurt and granola and am never without a piece of gum. I usually answer "blue" when asked my favorite color, but I know in my heart that it's always been and always will be garnet!

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