By ALLIE ENGLERT
Just a small town girl
Homecoming week has officially come to an end. We, Tigers, can all breathe a sigh of relief now that our schedules are no longer burdened with the exciting entity that is Songfest. We can focus our efforts onto the demanding syllabi that may have been neglected in the hype of last week. As is common with every year, Songfest did not pass without its usual antics.
Regardless if you participated or not, each of us had close ties to the performance, whether it be through friends or the involvement of our own organizations. When all the awards were distributed, many students were perplexed due to the several (and unexplained) changes made with the traditions that are Songfest and Homecoming. Few, if any, understood how points were used to determine overall winners. Likewise, it seems to be an annual problem that those groups able to spend the most money are the main competitors. If anything, the tradition of Songfest may divide us rather than unite us. However, although we might have all been divided in our hopes for who would win the big prize at the end of the night, there was one instance that united us all as Georgetonians, as students and faculty alike, and moreover as human beings. This moment occurred when the testimony of a heroic young boy, Lane Goodwin, and the fight for his life was shared with us.
According to his Facebook page, “Prayers for Lane Goodwin,,” Lane is a thirteen year old from McLean county, Ky, fighting a rare form of cancer. At age ten he was diagnosed with Alveolar Rhabdomyosarcoma stage IV. Since then, he has gone into remission and relapsed a few times. However, the battle he faces now is his toughest yet, as the cancer has spread to his brain. In the midst of all of his pain, anytime his parents have asked him how he’s doing, Lane has never failed to give them a “thumbs up” sign, and this is why ordinary people, celebrities, professional athletes, and famous musicians have all shown their support by posting pictures with the “thumbs up” sign to the “Prayers for Lane Goodwin” Facebook page. When senior Mason Head shared Lane’s story in between acts during dress rehearsal on Thursday, GC students participated in a more rewarding act than any Songfest skitsThe spirit of competition was pushed aside because in that moment, we were not freshmen, sophomores, juniors, or seniors. We were not identified as independents or Greeks. We were not focused on whose costumes were better and whose choreography was best. We were not worried about winning or losing. We, the Georgetown College student body, were united as individuals who sympathized with an innocent child facing an immense amount of adversity.
Our Georgetown community had a shining moment Thursday night when we pushed aside our petty concerns of the moment to sympathize with an innocent child whose courageous story ultimately challenges us to put the troubles of our day into perspective. Perhaps it would be beneficial to use Songfest as a venue to achieve a common goal. September is Childhood Cancer Awareness Month. Maybe a part of the competition could be which organization could sell the most tickets to Songfest with proceeds going to philanthropies such as cancer research or Children’s Miracle Network. While a dollar of each ticket sold for dress rehearsal was donated to Children’s Miracle Network, much more could be done to make Songfest into an event that not only unites our campus, but improves the community around us. Perhaps the overall prize could be a monetary donation to a philanthropy chosen by the winner. The money could be made through ticket sales. Honestly, this might make more people interested in coming to Songfest, and more importantly, it would make our hard work worth something greater than self-glorification. Songfest and Homecoming week in general are an incredible way for Georgetown students to improve the community around them. Perhaps, next year’s changes to our fall traditions could seek to unite us as Tigers and also offer an avenue to improve those less fortunate than ourselves.
And if you don’t know, now you know, Tigas.