New York—Rain and cold weather didn’t stop more than 700 Fordham students from packing Lombardi Field House on Oct. 14 to help spread awareness and raise money for victims of hurricanes Katrina and Rita.
Event organizers Will Healey, executive president of United Student Government (USG) and Fordham College at Rose Hill senior; and Laura Lombardi, executive vice president of USG, said the event united the student body.
“It is great to see all the different clubs and organizations come together and contribute in different ways,” said Lombardi, a College of Business Administration senior.
More than 70 student clubs, organizations and performing groups sponsored the University’s “Rally for Relief” festival, which raised nearly $4,000. Donations are still being accepted. The event featured live music, games, authentic Cajun food, raffles, a dunk tank, a pie-eating contest and student group performances—including the folk choir and bongo dancers.
Rosa Asciolla, a visiting sophomore from Loyola New Orleans, told the crowd she was scared when she was forced to leave behind her apartment and most of her belongings and flee to Houston. She said a good-news phone call from her mother, a Fordham alumna, assured the Virginia-native that she would not have to miss an entire semester, as she could register for fall classes at Fordham.
“People at Fordham have been so welcoming,” Asciolla said. “I am so grateful to the Jesuit community.”
To date, the University has raised more than $85,000 for the Hurricane relief effort and admitted more than 100 displaced college students from the New Orleans area. All proceeds from the “Rally for Relief” festival will be put toward the University Relief Fund, which will be donated to Catholic Charities USA.
Asciolla said she was “optimistic” about returning to Loyola for the spring semester and offered an open invitation to the Fordham community. “I hope you all come to New Orleans,” she said. “It’s a wonderful place.”