Athletes used the #headstrong hashtag to support the HEADstrong Foundation, a cancer charity, on Instagram during the month of February.
The trend began with professional athletes voicing their support by posting pictures of themselves while playing their sport. Like other social media “challenges, users tag both the person that nominates them and 3 other athletes who they hope will also participate.
HEADstrong was created by Hofstra student Nick Colleluori, who passed away from cancer at the age of 21, and aims to improve lives affected by cancer through generating resources for costs associated with treatment.
Junior cross country and track athlete Ellie Guthrie decided to show her support because she wanted to “encourage people to donate to [the foundation] and become more aware of it.”
“I hope and believe that [the challenge] will make an impact,” added Guthrie.
Some students question whether or not the trend is really motivated by athletes who simply want exposure for themselves.
Sophomore Elizabeth McGrath observed that posting about HEADstrong is not the same as donating to the cause. “When people post about [the foundation], it is spreading awareness, but it doesn’t take effect until they actually do something like donate which I don’t think half of the people did.”
Junior and ballet dancer Meaghan Wottrich was uncertain about whether or not the HEADstrong challenge would prove beneficial for the foundation. “I think it is a trend as of right now, but I hope that it continues to grow,” said Wottrich.
Meanwhile, senior tennis player Cal Hunter views this social media frenzy as a way to assist those battling cancer and “actually spread awareness.”
Ultimately, despite questions about the intentions of student participants, sophomore Sophie Webster believes that the challenge has “helped us to put our life here at Campo in perspective to the rest of the world.”