School Holds Annual Run for Color to Support WSA
Students and faculty members gathered to participate in or volunteer to help run the sixth annual Run for Color last Sunday.
Students and faculty members gathered to participate in or volunteer to help run the sixth annual Run for Color last Sunday. The event was organized by Head Athletic Trainer Jason Larson H’03 ’19, Assistant Dean of Students Emilie Kosoff H’88 ’96 ’00 ’18 P’19, and Student Council Community Service Representative Lauren Recto ’20. Due to inclement weather, the course of the run was changed to the Green Field, with participants gathering in the Irwin Dining Center. Runners were still invited to enjoy a variety of refreshments and could purchase merchandise, including socks, shirts, sweatshirts, and more.
“I think the event is a way for Lawrentians to come together and support a very special member of our community. A lot of times what we do in community service—both in direct service and fundraising—is to help organizations and people outside the gates of Lawrenceville; so, this is a way to help someone within our community,” Director of Community Service Rachel Cantlay P’07 ’09 ’11 said.
The Run for Color was initially started in honor of Ella Larson, who is the daughter of Jason Larson and Director of Nursing Amy Larson, with the proceeds of the event going towards The Williams Syndrome Association (WSA). Over the past few years, the School has raised over $30,000, a contribution that has inspired the Executive Director of WSA, Terry Monkaba, to travel from the association’s headquarters in Michigan and attend this year’s run.
While one purpose of the event was certainly to incentivize students to become more aware of the cause, Jason Larson added that another aim was to “introduce Ella to the Lawrenceville community and inspire some of the brightest young minds to work in the field of medicine, particularly pediatric genetics or pediatric cardiopulmonary in the future.” He hopes that someday, a Lawrentian will invest in the branch of scientific research to help discover a cure to Williams Syndrome.
The event began with a speech given by Jason Larson, who then handed over the podium to Monkaba. She spoke on behalf of her son, who is also diagnosed with Williams Syndrome, and shared his story with the community. Following her address, runners gathered at the start of the course as student volunteers prepared to throw color. Ella, who had always sat on her father’s shoulders in previous years, participated in the run for the first time.
Reflecting on the event, particularly regarding the last-minute changes as a result of the weather, Recto said. “I think that the Community Service Council and the Housemasters were really an integral part of making this year’s event a success because being in communication with them allowed us to reach underclassmen and encourage students to attend.”
Reflecting on her first Run for Color at Lawrenceville, Quincy Leung ’22 said, “I thought it was a very unique experience, especially because we did the run in the rain. Since this is supporting a good cause, I wanted to show that our community cares for Ella and those who are diagnosed with Williams Syndrome.”