UCF’s Tau Kappa Epsilon fraternity has jousted its way to raising more than $8,000 to benefit St. Jude Children’s Research Hospitals.
The fraternity surpassed its goal of $7,500 — and far exceeded last year’s earnings of about $2,000 — after a week of philanthropy events such as Pie-A-Teke and partial proceeds nights at Chick-fil-A on University Boulevard and Blake Pizza in the Plaza on University shopping center.
The main fundraising event was TKE’s Joust for Jude at Lake Claire on Sunday. While the turnout wasn’t as large as TKE brother Robert Taylor expected, the jousting competition and sponsors raised about $6,000.
The fraternity’s chapter also earned funds by participating in the Orlando St. Jude Walk/Run to End Childhood Cancer on Sept. 26.
“We’re passionate about St. Jude, and it’s great that we raised that much,” said Taylor, a junior radio-television major.
Taylor oversaw the Joust for Jude event as the vice president of TKE this semester, but he’s passing on the torch to another brother, Geoffrey Saine, Saturday night at the fraternity’s formal. Alex Dieguez, who was the philanthropy chair this fall, will hand down the reins to Drew Koer.
The Joust for Jude event also brought joy to one Kappa Alpha Theta sister who was announced to be TKE’s Sweetheart.
Livvy Shaheen, a junior social work major, will be crowned as TKE’s Sweetheart at the fraternity’s formal Saturday night, and her reign will last until next year’s Joust for Jude.
“You’re expected to uphold their values and represent them well,” she said in regards to what being TKE Sweetheart entails.
Shaheen said she worked hard to go to the fraternity’s different events this semester and to raise funds for the St. Jude philanthropy in the hopes of becoming Sweetheart.
She said the TKE brothers are her best friends — other than her own sorority sisters.
Looking to the future, Taylor hopes the fraternity’s spring philanthropy event, Ronald RayGun, will be as successful as the joust. The bracket-style laser tag tournament, which is named after one of TKE’s most notable alumni, brings in a lot of support and participation from the UCF community each year.
Paige Wilson is a Digital Producer for the Central Florida Future. Follow her on Twitter at @ByPaigeWilson or email her at PaigeW@CentralFloridaFuture.com.