Gift Establishes the First Student-Funded Chair in the History of the UI

IOWA CITY, IOWA, January 19, 2018The University of Iowa Dance Marathon, the university’s largest student organization, announced a $2 million gift commitment to establish the University of Iowa Dance Marathon Chair in Pediatric Oncology, Clinical and Translational Research. The gift marks the first student-funded chair in the history of the University of Iowa and will fund a faculty position in the UI Stead Family Department of Pediatrics to lead the pediatric cancer research program.

University of Iowa Dance Marathon Executive Director Alex Linden announces the group’s $2 million gift to establish a faculty chair at the University of Iowa Stead Family Children’s Hospital

“This gift from UI Dance Marathon is extraordinary,” said Brooks Jackson, M.D., M.B.A., University of Iowa vice president for medical affairs and dean of the Roy J. and Lucille A. Carver College of Medicine. “Over the past 24 years, UI Dance Marathon has raised more than $21 million to support our pediatric cancer patients and their families. These students are compassionate individuals and exemplary citizens, and they inspire all of us at University of Iowa Stead Family Children’s Hospital.”

The UI Dance Marathon Chair in Pediatric Oncology, Clinical and Translational Research will be dedicated to improving outcomes for pediatric cancer patients by advancing research into treatments and cures.

“This is an amazing opportunity for us to support steps forward toward a cure,” said Alex Linden (Class of 2018), UI Dance Marathon executive director from Sioux City. “We are thankful to all of our students, our donors, and our alumni for making this possible, and especially to our Dance Marathon families, who keep us focused on making a difference For the Kids.”

UI Dance Marathon is a student-run philanthropy that creates and sustains special projects to provide emotional and financial support for pediatric oncology and bone-marrow-transplant patients and their families cared for at UI Stead Family Children’s Hospital. UI Dance Marathon hosts an annual Big Event where students come together for 24 straight hours to raise awareness for pediatric cancer. Dancers are required to raise a minimum of $500 in order to participate. This year’s Big Event will take place February 2–3.

 “With this incredibly generous gift, UI Dance Marathon and its donors have made a major contribution toward finding answers for our most vulnerable patients and their families,” said Lynette Marshall, president and CEO, the University of Iowa Center for Advancement. “Gifts, large and small, are essential to advancing research and providing world-class care at UI Stead Family Children’s Hospital. These students set an extraordinary example of giving, of which we all can be proud.”

For photos or video of the event, please contact Dana Larson, UI Center for Advancement executive director of communications and marketing,, 319-467-3661, 917-345-9841 (mobile).

Contact: Dana Larson, executive director, communications and marketing, UI Center for Advancement, 319-467-3661, 917-345-9841 (mobile),

The University of Iowa Center for Advancement, an operational name for the State University of Iowa Foundation, is the preferred channel of giving to all areas of the University of Iowa.

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