by Denae McGaha, guest writer

Photo Courtesy of Pacific Lutheran University Facebook
Photo Courtesy of Pacific Lutheran University Facebook

Members of Pacific Lutheran University’s Progress club held their annual “Sign Me” drive this past Friday.
Based in Red Square, Progress members spent the day volunteering their clothing and their bodies as canvases for the donating public.
This event, along with Progress’ popular “Save it or Shave it” fundraiser in the spring, raises money for the Free Care Fund at Mary Bridge Children’s Hospital in Tacoma.
According to the club’s website, Progress’ mission is to raise funds to go toward children who are in need of medical care and to advocate and raise awareness about the healthcare system and issues in U.S. health care.
Junior Katie Johnston certainly became more aware of Progress’ goal because of this fundraiser. The eyeful of sharpie covered camarades drove her to ask about their cause, says Johnston. She also said Progress’ methods are different than other clubs.
While Johnston is not eager to be covered in permanent marker herself, she admires the drive of students involved with Progress. It was good to see students taking leadership and action, she said.
Progress’ actions caught senior Tabitha Gross’ attention when it spread out as far as her home base of Morken last year. A business major, Gross sees merit in the fundraiser, noting its valuable visual and interactive aspects.
“It gets people asking questions…It got me curious” Gross said.
First-year Gavin Jackson, an excited member of Progress, is glad Progress has that effect. Jackson says he jumped into Progress after he saw how fun the group seemed at the Involvement Fair earlier this year. Aside from the amusement of Progress, Jackson is invested in its cause.
“Kids should be having fun” Jackson said.
He is also looking forward to Progress’ future visit to the hospital when they will meet and play with the children they are supporting.
While Gross and Johnston show hesitance at letting strangers wield a Sharpie on their bodies, Jackson throws caution to the wind. “I’m not reserved,” said Jackson. “Sign me!”

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