Brett Julian ’13, Staff Writer
Thanks to the efforts of the engineering program and athletic training team’s efforts at Merrimack, this year’s Hope for Haiti 5K race was a success. The race, which started at approximately 8:30 am on Saturday morning on the campus of Merrimack, showcased 170 runners who were out supporting a truly great cause.
The proceeds of the event will be donated to the students making the trip to Haiti where they will attempt to provide as much clean water and rehabilitation as possible. Last year, just over 30 runners registered and competed in the event. This year, 170 eager runners ran in the race and successfully finished. Student Involvement, Campus Ministry, the campus running club and the Office of Alumni Affairs were supportive of this event from the start of the semester.
Because of the money raised through avid participation in several events, especially the race, both January and June trips have been organized to send students to Haiti. The Merrimack Civil Engineering team has already chipped in dramatically by saving 30,000 gallons of water per day in the town of Marmont by repairing a leaking water system. As an organization they are continuing to work tirelessly to research solutions for those without the privilege of having clean drinking water.
One of the biggest ambassadors of the event, Michael Laracy,’13 a Civil Engineering major, and member of Men’s Baseball has been a driving force for these contributions. Laracy was able to get the entire baseball team to participate in Saturdays events.
The team’s starting centerfielder Mark O’Flynn led the line of runners for the team placing sixth overall. Along with the Baseball team contributing and running, the Women’s Lacrosse team was also well represented.
The Women and Men’s Cross Country teams showed their support during the race by guiding and cheering on runners, while a great deal of their teams members joined the race as well. In the midst of all this success it would be a discredit to Margaret Jacques, the President of ASCE and a Civil Engineering major to not commend her duties. Jacques helped develop the idea for the race, orchestrated the approach and make it into a great day for the runners and for those who have worked so hard with her to make it a reality.
The eventual goal is $16,000 which was a target set early on in the semester. The team is narrowing in on the goal and is excited for the trips to Haiti. “We hope to make this an annual event, so that trips can continue and we will be able to aid the people of Haiti,” said Jacques. One last major contributor who helped represent the athletic training program efforts was Mollie Fitzgerald, ‘13 and member of the Women’s Tennis Team.