Judging Awareness: Ellis students decorate doors to highlight cancer awareness

Published 9:59 am Saturday, February 9, 2019

Despite the winter blues, Ellis Middle School students didn’t let that stop them from raising funds and awareness for cancer research.

The last week of school had been a tough go because of inclement weather that kept students and teachers at home, but all things considered, the fifth annual door-decorating contest continued without a hitch on Friday afternoon.

Stephanie Holtorf, from The Hormel Institute, observes a decorated door during Friday morning’s contest at Ellis Middle School. Eric Johnson/photodesk@austindailyherald.com

A small group of judges comprised of Hormel Institute scientists and Ellis Middle School Student Council officers made their way around the school to critique the doors that were decorated for the contest, such as one door that focused on brain cancer and another door completely decked out in pink with balloons for breast cancer.

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Each classroom was randomly assigned different types of cancer, ranging from leukemia to thyroid, and as an educational component, learned about these cancers and their symptoms as well as statistics to go along with them as an informational piece.

“It went really well,” said Recca Bryson, student council advisor. “I think with our messaging apps and promotional videos that students had done, it helped students remember about the different events going on.”

Winners of the door decorating contest will receive a pizza party with pop and cookies, while second and third place winners would receive a pizza party sans cookies, or just have pizza. Those who won the contest will be announced sometime early next week.

Katherine Schumacher looks over her notes next to the rules of the door-decorating contest at Ellis Middle School Saturday afaternoon. Eric Johhnson/photodesk@austindailyherald.com

Recently, Ellis Middle School were recognized as the Pink Heart Award recipients from Paint the Town Pink for their cancer fundraising efforts. Last year, the school raised $2,000 for the campaign. This year, students are working hard to meet their goals while hurdling over the unexpected snow days.

“Things went better than I thought,” said Meghan Rosheim, student council officer and eighth grade student. “We did really well.”

Fellow student council officers and eighth grade students Mary Eich, Katherine Schumacher, Cassidy Shute and Nora Tweeten also agreed that Ellis Middle School was prepared and organized for inclement weather possibly hampering their Pink Week at the school.

After sucker sales and dress-up days such as Decades Day, the students so far have raised about $1,600 for Paint the Town Pink, not including the totals raised from Coins for Cancer fundraiser, where the amount has not been tallied up yet.

“Judging from our experiences, there was definitely more involvement,” Schumacher said. “Everything went very well despite the snow days.”