May 8, 2013

USD Dance Marathon, student organizations raise money for medical care and other local charities

VERMILLION, S.D. -- The 16th annual Dance Marathon fundraiser at the University of South Dakota raised more than $50,000 this spring, making it one of several recent student philanthropy events that helped raise money for local and regional charities in 2013.

Dance Marathon, the largest student-run philanthropy in South Dakota, raised $50,300, March 23-24, with all proceeds donated to Sanford Children’s Castle of Care, the region’s only affiliate of Children’s Miracle Network hospitals. Sigma Alpha Epsilon, one of eight fraternities on the USD campus, donated more than $1,500 raised during its Paddy Murphy Week in March to Dance Marathon on behalf of Children’s Miracle Network. The Pi Kappa Alpha Fraternity (PIKE), Kappa Pi Chapter at USD, was also active in making Dance Marathon a success, sponsoring two Miracle Children and contributing nearly $5,000 to the event.

“It was an amazing weekend and every child had a blast with the college students who participated,” said USD student Mandi Janicek of Omaha, Neb., overall chair of USD Dance Marathon. “We are so grateful for every participant, sponsor, donor, Morale Captain and family member involved with DM.”

In addition to raising money for Dance Marathon, PIKES Week of Service, Cycle for Life and Change for Change are three additional programs sponsored by the fraternity to help raise money for leukemia and lymphoma research as well as other local organizations. A summary of the activities includes:

  • Week of Service, April 2-9. PIKE Members volunteered more than 1,100 hours to local charities such as the Vermillion Assisted Living Center, Beyond School Adventures, the Siouxland Food Bank, the Heartland Humane Society and PIKES in the Park.
  • PIKE’s in the Park (April 4), an annual public event at Vermillion’s Prentis Park, and PIKE’s third annual Cycle for Life (Feb. 6) event at the USD Wellness Center helped raise more than $4,000 for the Leukemia and Lymphoma Foundation.
  • Change for Change raised more than $360 for homeless shelters in Vermillion, Sioux Falls, S.D., and Sioux City, Iowa, as members of PIKE and USD sororities camped nightly in boxes on campus for an entire week.

Photographs and more information from these events are available at the “PIKE Week of Service” and the “PIKES in the Park” Facebook pages. For additional information about the USD chapter of Pi Kappa Alpha, please contact Brent Olinger at (605) 421-0272.

About The University of South Dakota
Founded in 1862, The University of South Dakota is designated as the only public liberal arts university in the state and is home to a comprehensive College of Arts and Sciences, School of Education, School of Health Sciences, the state's only School of Law, School of Medicine, the accredited Beacom School of Business and the College of Fine Arts. USD has an enrollment of more than 10,000 students taught by more than 400 faculty members. More information is available at

This material is available in an alternate format upon request. Please contact University Relations at 605-677-5759. If you are a person with a disability and need a special accommodation to fully participate in any university activity or event, please contact Disability Services at 605-677-6389 as soon as possible, but no later than 48 hours before the event, so that appropriate arrangements may be made.


Peter Carrels
The University of South Dakota
(605) 216-1233
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