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Putting the ‘Fun’ in Fundraiser

By Clarke News  |  May 17, 2023

At Clarke, 100 percent of our students take part in service learning of some kind. It’s an impressive stat that takes on more meaning when you see it in action, and this spring has presented many opportunities to earn those service hours and live out our BVM core value of charity. 

Clarke Association of Nursing Students Bake Sale and Quilt Raffle 

With the help of Nursing faculty and staff, members of CANS organized a joint event March 27 & 28 to help two great area organizations. First, students baked delicious treats to sell over the lunch hour to help raise money for the Riverview Center, which cares for victims of sexual assault.  

Students then collaborated with Nursing Department Office Manager Marilyn Jones to raffle off three quilts she’d made from discarded Clarke Nursing uniforms. The quilt raffle received over 1,400 entries and raised $1,233 for the Red Basket Project, which offers free period products to those in need throughout Dubuque.  

Art + Design Department Hosts Sneaker Collection 

Did you know that in the United States, 200 million pairs of shoes end up in the land fill each year? As part of their Earth Week activities, the Clarke Art + Design Department hosted a sneaker drive throughout April to collect old shoes to be recycled or reused.  

“A quick scan around my house collected three dozen pairs of shoes that my children and family had outgrown but were still in good condition. If my family had a pile like that, I wondered, ‘how many more could I collect?’” said Eric Wold, Associate Professor of Art and Design. “Upcycling sneakers keeps them out of the landfill and we found a program, Got Sneakers, that offers a financial donation back to Clarke for every pair of wearable sneakers collected. We hope to use the funds to help with food insecurity or other student needs on campus.” 

Social Work Holds Drive for Local Veterans Affairs Office 

When two graduates of the Master of Social Work program reached out to Chair and Associate Professor of Social Work Colleen Mahoney for help in their new roles, the department and Clarke community were happy to step in.  

The department led a food and toiletry drive from March 27 to April 5 to gather materials to support the VA as the staff looks for more sustainable resources to meet the needs of their clients. Individuals also made monetary and item donations to CU Linked, which aids Clarke students in need connect with resources for food security, clothing, transportation, and more. 

Dancing For The Kids 

On April 15, students hosted the eighth annual Clarke University Dance Marathon. The event caps off a year-long fundraising drive in hopes of providing care and support for children and families being treated at the University of Iowa Children’s Hospital, as part of the Children’s Miracle Network. The donations help to fund things such as education, research, equipment, and other areas of hospital need. The Clarke team raised over $13,000 this year, and has raised well over $100,000 since the events inception.  

“I’m a Nursing major, so joining Dance Marathon seemed like a great way to get involved in the community and add meaning to the work I’ll be doing in the field,” said Katie McGrane, a sophomore from Manchester, Iowa. “To see the kids dancing and having a good time even after all they’ve been through makes it a very rewarding and fun event.”  

Physical Therapy Partners With Wheels for the World 

The Clarke University Organization of Student Physical Therapists (COSPT) will host its annual collection of assistive devices on Saturday, April 22 from 8 a.m. to noon outside the main entrance of the Mary Miske Center for Scientific Inquiry. The wheelchairs, canes, walkers, and other devices collected will then be donated to Wheels for the World, a non-profit organization that refurbishes items and sends them to those in need. 

“Students and staff from Clarke University’s Doctor of Physical Therapy program have been involved with Wheels for the World for more than 15 years,” said Brad Kruse, Chair and Associate Professor of Physical Therapy. “Citizens of Dubuque and the surrounding communities continue to support this charity through their donations, keeping these items out of the landfill while providing for a need for those less fortunate. These donations have supported the mobility needs of individuals in various regions of the world, including Haiti, Central America and Africa.” 

Is there a cause at Clarke where you’d like to lend your support? Please contact the Mackin Office of Institutional Advancement by email at or phone at (563) 588-6405 and they will be happy to assist you.