Sigma Chi nets $30k in Derby Days for cancer


Attendees at the 2015 Derby Days hosted by the Sigma Chi fraternity. Special to Eagle News.

FGCU’s Sigma Chi fraternity raised more than $30,000 toward the fraternity’s national philanthropy, the Huntsman Cancer Institute. The fraternity held its annual Derby Days competition last week.
Derby Days is a week-long contest between organizations that are part of the Panhellenic Association. HCI is a cancer research center located in Utah dedicated to finding the causes of cancer, developing new and better treatments and preventing people from developing cancer.
The annual Derby Days competition was started at the University of California-Berkley in 1916 and since then has been a tradition at almost all active Sigma Chi chapters. In 2013, Sigma Chi alumni and undergraduate chapters across the country surpassed $1.2 million in contributions to HCI.
Derby Days is comprised of four different parts: a relay race, that is a series of sporting events and a trivia contest; fundraising competition; skit night and crowning Derby Darling.
Organizations compete to win individual events as well as the overall title.
“While I love skit night, my favorite part of Derby Days is definitely our Extreme Hour, which is an hour where the organization that raises the most money in just one currency, wins points in the Derby Race,” Robert Galler, an active Sigma Chi member, said. “The girls get very competitive but at the same time, realize that it’s all going toward cancer research. Within the last three minutes of day two on Thursday, I watched three sororities donate over $1,800 combined.”
This year, Kappa Delta Sorority won skit night as well as the overall competition. The Delta Delta Delta Fraternity won the relay race while the Chi Omega Fraternity claimed Derby Darling.
“Being a part of an incredible organization [Sigma Chi] is such a rewarding experience,” Derby Darling Beth Neylan, a sophomore majoring in marketing, said. “It was incredible to raise $10,000 with my sisters, while having fun for an amazing and worthwhile cause.”
FGCU’s Sigma Chi Chapter, Lambda Zeta, was chartered in February 2010 and has been hosting Derby Days at FGCU for five years.